May 26, 2022

SCOAP3 Open Access Initiative Formally Launches at CERN

From the CERN Press Office:

Representatives from the science funding agencies and library communities of 29 countries are meeting at CERN today to launch the SCOAP3 Open Access initiative. Open Access revolutionizes the traditional scientific publishing model with scientific papers being made freely available to all, and publishers paid directly for their indispensable peer-review services to the community.


The objective of SCOAP3 is to grant unrestricted access to scientific articles appearing in scientific journals in the field of particle physics, which so far have only been available to scientists through certain university libraries, and generally unavailable to a wider public. Open dissemination of preliminary information, in the form of pre-peer review articles known as preprints, has been the norm in particle physics for two decades. SCOAP3 now brings the vital peer review service provided by journals into the Open Access world.

In the SCOAP3 model, libraries and funding agencies pool resources currently used to subscribe to journal content and use them to support the peer-review system directly instead. Journal publishers then make their articles Open Access, which means that anyone can read them. Authors retain the copyright, and generous licenses for re-use are used.


SCOAP3 expects to be operational for articles published as of 2014.

From a CERN Blog Post

With a projected SCOAP3 budget of  36 million Swiss francs over three years, 12 journals from 7 publishers are now on the list for a possible contract for the provision of peer-review, open access and other publication services. Over 6600 articles relevant to the field were published in these journals in 2011; this represents the vast majority of the literature.

“It has taken an amazing team effort to get here, with volunteers from the library community, research institutions and funding agencies working hard together to steer the initiative, alongside constructive discussions with the publishers of the field,” says Salvatore Mele, head of Open Access at CERN, who convened the SCOAP3 Steering Committee over a year and a half. “This bodes well for the next crucial steps as SCOAP3 moves forward.”

Direct to SCOAP3 Web Site

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.