I need to budget the cost for publication for a European grant that requires open access, either green or gold, and I am struggling to figure out the costs over a five year period. Some multidisciplinary journals can have open access fees up to €10,000 and specialized journals between €2000-4000.

When I add things up it comes to a considerable amount, around €100,000+. I find unreasonable to pay this much for publishing when research money should pay for research, so I am wondering how people budget these publication costs in recent funding application. What are some real costs after 5 years?

I know that in some cases the green open access does not cost because the publisher allows to post the accepted version on a repository within six months. But publishers are becoming more restrictive about this.

  • 1
    It would help if you specify the field. Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 9:26
  • Everything above €500 seems absolutely unreasonable.
    – Arno
    Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 9:30
  • 6
    @Arno in my field (theoretical biology), I am not aware of any decent journal that has open access fees below (or even close to) €500. Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 9:38
  • 2
    100,000 USD will pay for 25 publications with a price tag of 4,000 USD each. It sounds like you are planning for a major research project. If you are applying for one postdoc and five Ph.D. students over three years, suddenly 100,000 USD for publications sounds like a lot less, no? Also: publication is part of research, so with OA, publication costs are research costs... Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 12:21
  • 2
    Depends also on the country. As researcher at a German university, you could get away with zero publishing costs (for the project budget) if you stick to journals covered by suitable open access agreements (such as project DEAL), or if your university provides open access funding from other sources. Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 21:50


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