In the publish or perish environment of academia, getting papers into high-impact international journals is a metric for determining a researcher’s performance and job prospects.
But are South African academics legally allowed to sign over copyright, which is vested in them and in their institutions, to international companies?
These international publishing houses, such as Elsevier and Springer Nature, are able to make careers by publishing an academic’s work in their journals, which have high citations (in other words, research published in these journals will be cited in other academics’ work) and global reach, but they also have tight control over the way in which the work gets disseminated and when.
Research put out by the University of Montreal last month shows that five publishing houses, one of which is Elsevier, published more than 50% of all academic articles in the world.
To read more of this story, find the full article, which was first published in Mail & Guardian, click here.