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Is there a special, Year 1, exception for TJ titles which do not meet their 2021 (Year 1) Open Access target?

The Transformative Journal programme is a new initiative, designed to provide another route by which publishers can provide a Plan S-aligned publishing option to cOAlition S funded-researchers. Given that this model is still in its infancy, cOAlition S has agreed that if a Transformative Journal does not meet its Year 1 (2021) OA target, then the Transformative Journal title can remain in the programme, provided that the journal agrees that the Year 2 target is calculated as if the Year 1 target had been achieved. Figure 1, below, provides an illustration.

Journal Year 1 OA penetration target Year 1 actual penetration rate Year 2 target (5% absolute growth) Year 2 target (15% relative growth) KPI target for Year 2 based on:
A 15% 12% 20%
(i.e. Year 1 target 15% + 5% = 20%)
(i.e. Year 1 target 15 * 1.15 = 17.25)
Absolute growth
B 50% 47% 55%
(i.e. Year 1 target 50% + 5% = 55%)
(i.e. Year 1 target 50*1.15 = 57.50)
Relative growth
Figure 1: Year 2 targets assume year 1 targets were met


This option may be helpful for publishers who are confident that Year 2 targets will be met. This confidence may arise because the publisher believes that they will conclude a number of Transformative Agreements (Read & Publish etc) and/or they are more proactively marketing the Transformative Journal option in Year 2.

Publishers who would like to make use of this option must request this in writing from cOAlition S, specifying which titles they are proposing would make use of this exception, and providing the Year 2 target data in line with the information set out in Figure 1. This request must be received by the cOAlition S Office no later than 09.00 BST on Tuesday 3 May 2022.

Any title which fails to meet its Open Access target will be withdrawn from the Transformative Journal programme.

Titles that fail to reach their Year 1 Open Access penetration target, and who do NOT seek the exception detailed here, will be removed from the Transformative Journal programme.

For the avoidance of doubt, the Year 1 exception relates to the OA penetration rate achieved in 2021. Publishers who join the TJ programme after 2021 – or existing TJ publishers who add new titles to their TJ list – will not be able to make use of this Year 1 (2021) exception.