January 22, 2022

Open Access Journal eLife Will Begin Charging Publication Fee on January 1, 2017

From an eLife Blog Post by Mark Patterson, Exec. Director of eLife:

This month, eLife is announcing that a fee for publication of $2,500 (USD) will take effect on January 1, 2017. All papers submitted from January 1 will be subject to the fee if they are accepted for publication, although authors with insufficient funding will be eligible for a fee waiver.

The publication fee is one element of eLife’s long-term financial strategy, which continues to rely on the generous support of three major biomedical research funders: the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Max Planck Society, and the Wellcome Trust. For the first five years of our operation, we have used funder support to cover all of our costs, but the strong growth we have experienced in submissions and publications has motivated us to introduce a means to cover a portion of our costs – specifically, the costs that increase in line with our publishing volume.


We have set the publication fee at eLife on the basis of our costs, but we feel it is also important to consider the fee in relation to the fees for open-access publication in other journals


The eLife publication fee isn’t designed to cover our fixed publication costs or our investments in new products, services and infrastructure to support more effective publishing. These are covered by the generous support of our funders, which has been secured for the next five years.


eLife’s publication fee of $2,500 is based on our marginal costs and will help us to become a more scalable publishing operation. In this way, we help ensure that more authors will have the chance to benefit from the eLife editorial process, and that we can publish as much science that satisfies the standards set by the eLife editors as we receive.

MUCH more in the Complete Blog Post Incl. Links to Several Related Items

See Also: Open-access journal eLife to start charging fees (by Declan Butler, Nature)

The decision to ask for $2,500 puts eLife in the range typically charged by other open-access journals, Patterson says, such as those published by the Public Library of Science. And it is lower than those charged by competitors such as Science Advances ($4,600) and Nature Communications ($5,200).


The journal will still depend on its backers to pay what it terms fixed costs, such as for technology platforms, infrastructure, marketing and other staff. The total publishing cost per article in 2017, eLife estimates, will be around £3,085 [approx. $4,009/USD].

Read the Complete Nature Article

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) 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 Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.