Correction October 1, 2006:
OAIster is poised to exceed 10 million items in the near future, not 1 billion! My apologies for this mistake, and many thanks to Walter for catching it. Heather
The Dramatic Growth of Open Access continues! The number of open access journals included in DOAJ continues to increase at a rate of about 1.5 per calendar day, while the increase in material in open access archives in showing a dramatic increase in the rate of growth, for all archives followed, as well as absolute growth. There have been some significant events in the past quarter which the author predicts will accelerate the rate of growth of OA, including funding agencies' open access policies, hybrid open access journal programs, new OA presses and significant work on models for small publishers to transition to open access.
The growth illustrated by open access archives in the past quarter is best described as "wow!". OAIster is poised to exceed 10 million [a billion items] (not all are open access) far ahead of my June predictions (end of 2007, then the end of 2006). With over 9.4 million items and growth of more than 1.8 million items in the past quarter, it now seems very likely that OAIster will exceed a billion items in the very near future.
All archives tracked (arXiv, rePec, E-LIS, the CARL Metadata Harvester, and now, PubMedCentral) are showing a noticeable increase in growth rate over the last quarter. Seasonable variations in archiving patterns could be a factor.
Open access advocates and students now have two excellent sources of data for illustrating the Dramatic Growth of Open Access: the Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR) , by Dr. Tim Brody, which provides the number of OAI records for 746 archives, an estimated percentage that are fulltext, and charts illustrating the growth of each archive. The University of Michigan Digital Library Production Service's OAIster now also features growth charts for archives and records harvested.
Strong growth continues in full open access publishing as tracked by the Directory of Open Access Journals.
There were many events occurring in the past quarter which will result in increasingly dramatic growth of open access, particularly:
Open Access Funding Agency Policies:
Four of the UK Research Councils announcing strong open access policies - for an in-depth report on the funding agency policies, see the August 2006 SPARC Open Access Newsletter.
Journal Hybrid Open Access Programs:
A number of publishers have announced hybrid open access journal programs in the past quarter, which is likely to increase the number of open access articles available in the future. My prediction is that this will also result in an increase in the number of fully open access journals, as more traditional publishers have an opportunity to experiment with shifting to an open access business model. Details and analysis are available in the September 2006 SPARC Open Access Newsletter.
New OA presses and approaches:
A quieter trend for now which I think will have a big impact in a year or two is the development by universities and libraries of new OA presses, many using open source software solutions such as Open Journal Systems. Charles Bailey has now blogged about 12 such presses in Digital Koans. SPARC's Raym Crow has published a significant work on Publishing Cooperatives, a blueprint for open access approaches that I predict will significantly advance the transition to OA by smaller traditional publishers.
Early figures are from my preprint, The Dramatic Growth of Open Access: Implications and Opportunities for Resource Sharing, Journal of Interlibrary Loan, Document Delivery & Electronic Reserve, 16, 3 (2006), and my updates:
Dec. 31, 2005 Update and 2006 Predictions
March 31, 2006 Update.
June 30, 2006 Update.
Directory of Open Access Journals:
September 30, 2006: 2,401 journals (45 titles added in the last 30 days)
June 30, 2006: 2,292 journals (38 titles added in the last 30 days)
March 31, 2006: 2,158 journals (78 titles added in the last 30 days)
Dec. 31, 2005: 1,988 titles
February 2005 - over 1,400 titles
September 30, 2006: 697 journals searchable at article level - 109,840 articles in DOAJ total
June 30, 2006: 653 journals searchable at article level -- 101,434 articles in DOAJ total
March 31, 2006: 594 journals searchable at article level -- 92,751 articles in DOAJ total
Dec. 31, 2004: 492 journals searchable at article level - 83,235
This is an increase of 134 journal titles during April - June, 2006; a 6% growth rate, or equivalent of an annual 25% growth rate.
Note that the DOAJ list does not represent all open access journals, only the ones that have met DOAJ standards, and have gone through the DOAJ vetting process. Jan Szczepanski's list is much longer: over 4,705 titles total as of early December 2005.
September 27, 2006: 9,417,772 records from 680 institutions
June 30, 2006: 7,605,729 records from 647 institutions
March 22, 2006: 7,040,586 records from 610 institutions
Dec. 22, 2005: 6,255,599 records from 578 institutions
February 2005: over 5 million records, 405 institutions
This is an increase of 1.8 records in a quarter, or an equivalent of over 7 million records annually. By percentage, this is an 24% increase in this quarter, or an equivalent of about 100% annually (at this rate, OAIster would double in size in a year). The number of institutions has increased by 33, 5%, or the equivalent of 20% annually.
Highwire Press Free Online Fulltext Articles
September 30, 2006: 1,435,924 free full-text article
June 30, 2006: 1,354,559 free full-text articles
March 31, 2006: 1,335,546 free articles
Dec. 31, 2005: 1,131,135 free articles
early January 2005: over 800,000 free articles
This is an increase of 81,365 articles, or a 6% increase (equivalent to 24% annually), supporting the suggestion that less than 1% increase in the previous quarter may have been a fluke due to timing of release.
696,503 OAI records, 100% freely accessible (data from the Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR) by Dr. Tim Brody. The ROAR site shows the impressive, if only beginning, growth curve of PMC.
September 30, 2006: 386,716
June 30, 2006: 374,166 e-prints
March 31, 2006: 362,334 e-prints
Dec. 31, 2005: Open access to 350,745 e-prints in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science and Quantitative Biology.
This is an increase of 19,716 e-prints in this quarter, a 5% increase in this quarter, or the equivalent of 20% annually.
RePEC: Research Papers in Economics
September 30, 2006: over 428,000 items of interest, over 321,000 of which are available online
June 30, 2006: over 385,000 items of interest, over 282,000 of which are available online
March 31, 2006: over 367,000 items of interest, over 266,000 of which are available online
Dec. 31, 2005: over 350,000 items of interest, over 250,000 of which are available online.
February 2005: over 200,000 freely available items.
This is an increase of 39,000 items available online, a 14% increase, or the equivalent of a 55% annual increase, roughly double the rate of increase reported in the last quarter.
September 30, 2006: 4,285 documents
June 30, 2006: 3,885 documents
March 31, 2006: 3,539 documents
Dec. 31, 2005: 3,095 documents
This is an increase of 400 documents, just under 10% or the equivalent of a 50% annual increase.
Canadian Association of Research Libraries : Metadata Harvester
September 30, 2006: 24,370 items from 12 archives
June 30, 2006: 22,819 items from 12 archives
March 31, 2006: 22,566 records from 12 archives
Dec. 31, 2005: 21,922 records from 11 archives.
This is an increase of 1,551 items, or a 7% increase (equivalent of 28% annually), a significant increase in growth rate from last quarter's 1% (4% annual equivalent).
This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.