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Open Access Publishing

The Lyell Collection

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Open Access Policy

The Geological Society’s Open Access policy evolves with the research funding and publishing landscape. There are several routes to Open Access publishing with the Geological Society which make the final published article freely accessible and usable to all.

Read the Open Access Policy

How can I find Open Access articles?

You can view Open Access articles in the Lyell Collection. The articles will also be Open Access in GeoScienceWorld, if the journal is included in that collection.

How can I tell if an article is Open Access?

Open Access articles have an Open Access logo against the article in the online table of contents and on the first page of the online article. Such articles are subject to the Creative Commons CC-BY license (see below).

The Lyell Collection also includes free articles without the Open Access logo (for example, the introductory chapters of books). Those articles can be accessed by all, but the regular terms and conditions of use apply.

What can I do with an Open Access article?

Geological Society Open Access articles are published under the Creative Commons CC-BY License. This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon the work, even commercially, as long as they credit the author for the original creation. This license allows maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.

Authors are still bound by the Society’s code of publishing ethics. The Creative Commons license is not a passport to duplicate/redundant publication.

Are subscription rates discounted to account for Open Access income?

GSL is committed to responsible subscription pricing and has implemented a transparent pricing policy. This ensures that both an APC and subscription income is not received for Open Access articles in GSL journals and books.

Click to view the pricing methodology

How much does it cost?

The Open Access Article Processing Charge can be found on the Author Information page of the relevant journal or book series. A discount is available to Fellows of the Geological Society for GSL-owned journals (where the first author or at least half the authors are Fellows). There are also discounts for members of AAG and EAGE for GEEA and Petroleum Geoscience, respectively. 

Research4Life: corresponding authors based in countries classified as ‘Group A’ and ‘Group B’ (via R4L) are eligible for a full APC waiver on articles published in Earth Science, Systems and Society (EScubed) and GeoHorizons.

Authors at institutions that have signed a read and publish agreement with the Geological Society of London may qualify for an APC discount. The list of qualifying institutions can be found on our Read and Publish Agreements page.

Only one form of discount or deal can be applied to the APC.

Which articles are eligible?

Any article that is to be published online in the Lyell Collection will be eligible, including those published for partner societies. Your funder's open access policy may differ between journals and books, or article types, and it is recommended you check this.

How do I select this option?

There will be a section in the online submission form allowing authors to choose Open Access.

Will paying for Open Access make any difference to the review process or publication time?

The article will go through the peer-review and production process in the same way as other articles. No preferential treatment will be offered other than free access and use of the published article.

Will the GSL Open Access policy comply with funding requirements?

The Geological Society offers routes to Open Access publication that comply with the UKRI Open Access policy and those of funders implementing Plan S and the US Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). All UKRI-funded authors and editors are able to publish with the Geological Society.

Click to find out how to publish your funded research Open Access with the Geological Society

Can I use material from elsewhere in my Open Access article?

Authors should check that any material that they use in their article that was not created by them has full permission to publish under the CC-BY license. Some picture libraries and other copyright holders might have policies against commercial reuse. You cannot use those figures in a Geological Society Open Access article. All material in the article must be compliant with the CC-BY license.

Transformative Journals

The Geological Society’s owned and co-owned journals have Plan S Transformative Journal status. Each journal commits to annual OA growth criteria and will move to fully open access when 75% of its research content is published Open Access. The Geological Society commits to transparent pricing to ensure that, for open access articles, an article processing charge and subscription income is not received.

  No. of articles published in 2021*  Number of OA CC BY articles published in 2021
OA % in 2021  TJ OA % target for 2022  TJ OA article target for 2022** 
Journal of the Geological Society
 96  19  20%  25%  24
Quarterly Journal of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology
 69  2  3%  8%  5
Petroleum Geoscience  38  4  11%  16%  6
Geochemistry: Exploration, Environment, Analysis  36  4  11%  16%  6
Proceedings of the Yorkshire Geological Society  15 1 7% 12% 2
N/A - the journal launched in January 2023 and is developing a content base from scratch.
Article numbers will be shared on this page in due course.
*baseline figures can be either the preceding year’s output or an average of the preceding 3. JGS and GEEA use the average. 
**based on same number of published articles as in 2021.