Opening the Future: A Funding Model for Open Access Books

Opening the Future is a collective subscription model for libraries, broadening your collections and funding further open access publishing.

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About CEU Press

Celebrating its 30th birthday in 2023, CEU Press publishes English language book publications from and about Central and Eastern Europe, in subjects ranging from politics and history to gender studies, Jewish studies, Cultural Studies, Economics, medieval studies, post-communism and classic literature. Every year, we add more than 30 new titles to our portfolio of more than 500 titles, and continuously grow and experiment with new subjects, new series, new title formats and open access models. Small but agile, we are recognised as the leading publisher in the history of the region, communism and transitions to democracy, and the foremost English language university press dedicated to research on Central and Eastern Europe and the former communist countries. All our published titles follow stringent peer review, editorial and production standards. 

The diversity of the region is reflected in the Press’s publications and its commitment to bring new voices to the world. Stringent peer review, editorial and production standards are a part of the Press culture.  

The OtF Model

Opening the Future brings together publishers and librarians to ensure that quality monographs are published open access affordably and sustainably, in a modified type of “subscribe to open model” (S2O) exclusively for books.  

With OTF, collections can grow at vastly reduced rates and funding future OA books demonstrably costs a fraction of closed monographs. 

We aim to publish 20+ frontlist OA titles per annum based on funding derived from an annual ebook package subscription fee converting to perpetual ownership after three years. After the first 18 months, we have achieved funding for 36 new titles across the next three years, but to continue, we need new supporters. Get in touch if your library would like participate. We have also made the pricing as affordable as possible, with tiered pricing available for all sizes of institutions. 

Membership of the OtF community - without subscribing to the backlist - is also available.

Shortlisted jointly with COPIM by ALPSP for their Innovation in Publishing award 2021.

Open Access for Books

The move to OA monographs must be a sustainable and bibliodiverse one - it must be sustainable for presses like ours and also for libraries. 

For us, OA enables works to become the foundation blocks of Humanities and Social Sciences and with which our civilisation stands a better chance of becoming fairer, more equitable and more inclusive.  

Open access for books is now high on the international policy agenda. Many models are prohibitive, though, for authors who do not have funding.  Book Processing Charges (BPCs), for example, worsen inequality by favouring the most wealthy institutions and authors, whereas collective library funding models like ours seek to spread the funding of OA books so that no single institution bears a disproportionate cost.