Hello 2021, hello Plan S!

The year 2021 has begun and Plan S, an initiative aimed at pushing open-access publishing that is backed by an international consortium of funding agencies and research organisations called cOAlition S, is coming into effect. In short, Plan S requires that scientific publications that result from research funded (at least partially) by grants of cOAlition S members starting in 2021 must be published in compliant Open Access journals or platforms.

Plan S defines a set of organisational and technical criteria that journals and other platforms must fulfill to be Plan S compliant. The organisational criteria are easily fulfilled by a non-profit, fully open-access journal such as Quantum:

In addition to this, Plan S includes a long list of technical requirements. At Quantum we have been working hard over the past years to make Quantum fully compliant with all these requirements. Some requirements leave some room for interpretation. Therefore no definite and final assessment of the compliance of journals is possible at this point in time while the Plan S journal checker tool is still in beta. Quantum is currently recognized as compliant with Plan S by this tool and on a very good track to be fully compliant with all technical requirements before the first research funded by 2021 cOAlition S grants is ready for publication. Quantum will aim to fulfill all requirements for all papers published in the upcoming 2021 volume.

The mandatory technical requirements are:

  1. Creative Commons license: Quantum is publishing all works under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license.
  2. DOAJ: Quantum is listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
  3. Long-term archiving: Quantum is depositing the full text of all publications in the CLOCKSS archive in addition to being an arXiv overlay journal.
  4. DOIs: Quantum is using Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for all its publications and is depositing high-quality meta-data into the Crossref database.
  5. Editorial and peer review processes and policies: Quantum has well defined publicly available peer-review and editorial policies in place and has been recognized for this by the European Physical Society
  6. License information embedded in published articles: Quantum is embedding machine readable license information in the PDF document produced by the arXiv prior to publication.
  7. Rationale for publication fees: Quantum is practicing open accounting, provides extensive rational for its article processing charges, and is by legal construction not allowed to run sustained profits.
  8. Funding information in meta-data: Journals must deposit the name of the funder and the grant number/identifier as part of the meta-data.

With the exception of the last point Quantum is already fully compliant today.

To collect funder information from our authors and submit this as part of our meta-data to Corssref, Quantum will roll out a new online form through which authors will be able to submit their final manuscript for publication in the first quarter of 2021 and we will retroactively add such meta-data for all works published after January 1st 2021.

With this, Quantum should be fully compliant with all Plan S requirements. We will continue to monitor changes in the Plan S requirements and ensure that Quantum remains an attractive publishing venue for cOAlition S funded authors.

Update 2021-02-04: The announced submission for is now online and we have begun adding funder information to the meta-data of the works already published in 2021.