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Plan S delayed a year amid raft of changes

The controversial open-access initiative Plan S has been postponed for a year, to give publishers and research organisations longer to align with the intended systemic shift in academic publishing.

Revised implementation guidance for Plan S, published on 31 May, includes changes intended to address the main criticisms of draft guidance from 2018. Chief among these was that the original start date of 1 January 2020 was simply too soon for publishers and research organisations to prepare for the plan, which will require all researchers supported by signatory funders to make their work openly available immediately so that the maximum value can be squeezed from it.

“The launch of Plan S has triggered an unprecedented global debate about open access, and this in itself I think is a positive development,” Marc Schiltz, the co-initiator of Plan S and president of the association of research funders and performers Science Europe, told journalists ahead of the launch. “Based on the feedback…We have revised Plan S without compromising the fundamental principles.”

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