an endless stream of questions, with
each stakeholder protecting their position. The Pull Model may also lead
to for-profit publishers abandoning
the academic publishing market (if
it becomes unprofitable for them to
exist), relinquishing this responsibility to not-for-profit entities who would
fill the void. Laasko et al.
2 provides an
overview of approaches to convert to
open access, some of which can be used
to guide the Pull Model transition and
mitigate pitfalls along the way.
Time is becoming a factor in this
debate, as the seeds of such a transformation are already in motion. Vogel5
notes that universities in Germany
decided to not pay subscription fees
to Elsevier, effectively challenging the
subscription fee model. Park and Seo3
outline a Korean publishing service
that facilitates open access. Satlow4
provides a commentary on separating the review process from the dissemination process. By separating the
key facets of the publishing ecosystem, the proposed idea provides an à
la carte menu for financial support,
which shares some of the free market
aspects of the Pull Model.
encourages institutions and their faculty
to work more closely in assessing publication quality. With these ends in mind,
the future of publications will continue
to change, and the Pull Model, though
disruptive to the existing publishing ecosystem, is one step to initiate a discussion on such a transformation.
1. Bohannon, J. Who’s downloading pirated papers?
Everyone. Science 352, 6285, 508–512.
2. Laasko, M., Solomon, D., and Bjork, B.-C. How
subscription-based scholarly journals can convert
to open access: A review of approaches. Learned
Publishing 29, 4 (Apr. 2016), 259–269.
3. Park, M. and Seo T.-S. Creating a national open access
journal system: The Korean journal publishing service.
Journal of Scholarly Publishing 48, 1 (Jan. 2016), 53–67.
4. Satlow, M. Academic publishing: Toward a new model.
Commentary, Chronicle of Higher Education 62, 38
5. Vogel, G. German researchers start 2017 without
Elsevier journals. Science 355, 6320 (2017), 17.
The author thanks two anonymous reviewers for their
comments, resulting in a significantly improved Viewpoint,
which was also written with support to the author from
the National Science Foundation (CMMI-1629955). Any
opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations
expressed in this material are those of the author and
do not reflect the views of the U.S. government, or the
National Science Foundation.
Sheldon H. Jacobson ( firstname.lastname@example.org) is Founder
Professor in Computer Science at the University of Illinois
at Urbana-Champaign, USA.
Copyright held by author.
Reputable society publications and
publishers should welcome such a
business model shift. Some academic
institutions may find ways to avoid paying submission fees while having their
researchers still publish their research;
however, the sheer diversity of faculty
and their publication needs will make
this a challenge. In the Push Model, researchers who gain access without paying access fees can remain anonymous.
In the Pull Model, with submission
and eventual publication, researchers
who avoid paying submission fees will
be exposed by who they list as their institution affiliation and/or co-authors.
Therefore, the Pull Model creates a
transparency (for submissions) that the
Push Model is challenged to achieve (for
The best consequence of the proposed Pull Model is access for all. It also
introduces a free market mechanism for
scholarly publications, whereby publishers must compete for institution submission subscription fees, by establishing
themselves to be worthy outlets for dissemination, maintaining their reputation for quality, and preserving the integrity of the peer-review process. Lastly, it
Publishing at the
of computer scien g.