What are accepted ways of splitting publication fees among coauthors, when authors are from different research groups and potentially even different institutions? Especially with open access publication, the fees tend to come out at a substantial amount.

In general, the corresponding author seems to be responsible to the journal for the payment of the fee. I wonder what would be commonly acceptable agreements with coauthors to split such fees?

There is already a general question on splitting collaboration costs here, but the current answer does not apply to publication fees, and I am really interested in this specific case.

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    I think an issue like this should be sorted out early on in the collaboration. Obviously one would expect the first author (team) to cover (most of) the costs, possibly sharing according to input (author order) but in general: whoever has money should use it. – Peter Jansson Jun 20 '13 at 8:43
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    @PeterJansson: Of course the first part doesn't apply to fields (like math) where authors are unordered/alphabetized. – Charles Jun 20 '13 at 20:57
  • I understand this question is different from collaboration cost. I think you can use the same concept. First, try the institution(s). Their reputation benefits from the publication. They should share some cost. Second, authors with full time salary may be able to (not necessarily willing to) share the cost. If still not enough, divide the cost evenly among the coauthors. I don't have personal experience with this case. Only my two cents. – scaaahu Jun 21 '13 at 8:09
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    In a field where there are journals that are very good and do not have a substantial fee, I would hope that the author who is pushing for the open access journal would foot the bill. – wsc Jun 22 '13 at 0:00

I think your question is a little backwards: All ways of splitting the publication fees are acceptable. You might run into some problems with your grant officer about transferring money around, but in the end they will get over it.

The more important question in my opinion is: What behaviour is acceptable from you and your co-authors. I believe the answer is to be nice since these are your co-authors after all. I wouldn't be too put off if a co-author refused to contribute to open access fees or if I was asked to contribute 1/N of the fees for an N author paper where I was a tertiary author and currently under-funded.

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