Subscription Journals become Open Access

Duncker & Humblot is starting a pilot project for the Open Access transformation together with ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft: Starting with volume 2022 the two economics journals Credit and Capital Markets – Kredit und Kapital and Journal of Contextual Economics – Schmollers Jahrbuch will be flipped to Open Access by means of the so-called ›Suscribe to Open‹ model.

What is ›Subscribe to Open‹ (S2O)?

›Subscribe to Open‹ (S2O) is a pragmatic approach to convert well-established subscription journals to Open Access. The model keeps the existing subscription structures and processes. As long as the subscription total does not fall below a predefined minimum all new journal content will be published Open Access.

However, as per the basic concept of the S2O model the journal is moved back behind the paywall as soon as the subscription amount sinks under the critical value. In this case, new content is made accessible exclusively to the subscribers again.

Short History of S2O

The ›Subscribe to Open‹ model was developed by the US-based journal publisher Annual Reviews and implemented in 2020 for the first time. A tabular overview provided by the S2O Community of Practice lists an initial set of 24 S2O journals in 2020 and 78 for 2022. The current number of S2O practicing publishers is limited to only ten worldwide (November 2021) – Duncker & Humblot included. The actual design of the S2O model varies from publisher to publisher.

The ›Diamond Way‹ of Open Access

The S2O model comes along with the so-called ›Diamond Way‹ of Open Access. ›Diamond Open Access‹ refers to publications which are freely and instantly accessible for the users as well as free of costs for the authors. Thus, the ›Diamond Way‹ is considered to be an enhancement of the ›Gold Open Access‹ model where authors respectively their institutions are charged for ›Article Processing Charges‹ (APC) or ›Book Processing Charges‹ (BPC).

FAQ for Subscribers

What is changing for subscribers through the S2O model?

Nothing. Through your subscription of a S2O journal – Credit and Capital Markets or Journal of Contextual Economics – you will receive access to the new journal content as usual. The only difference is that your subscription now also enables the Open Access publication of the journal.

What means S2O regarding the print version which is included in my subscription?

Nothing. As long as you keep subscribing the S2O journal, you will continue to receive your print copy of the journal.

What happens if I cancel my subscription of a S2O journal?

Your subscription enables the Open Access publication of the journal. Hence, your cancellation could make it necessary to change the journal back to Paid Access. New content would then be accessible exclusively to subscribers again. You also would not receive your print copy anymore, if included in your subscription.

Do I (or my institution) have any further advantages through a S2O subscription?

Your S2O subscription is a small but important contribution to the ongoing Open Access transformation. In comparison to other established transformation models the S2O model is extremely cost-efficient overall. You also enable free of charge Open Access publishing for authors because S2O journals dispense with any ›Article Processing Charges‹ (APCs) or ›Publish & Read Fees‹ (PAR fees).

Where can I direct further questions about your S2O model?

Do not hesitate to contact us at:

FAQ for Authors

What is different for authors in S2O journals?

In our S2O journals Credit and Capital Markets and Journal of Contextual Economics your Open Access article will be published without any charge for you or your institution.

What about my copyright and usage rights if I publish my article in a S2O journal?

You retain the copyright of your Open Access article. In our S2O journals we publish your article on the basis of the Creative Commons license CC BY 4.0. If your article is shared or adapted appropriate credit and indication of possible changes must be given. Apart from that you and any other may distribute, re-use and change your article without any restriction.
For further information please also have look on our fact sheet Author's Rights in Gold Open Access.

What happens to my article if the S2O journal changes back to Paid Access?

Once released Open Access articles remain freely accessible – whatever happens. If your article is destinated for a future issue which was planned to be published Open Access at the time your submission was finally accepted, your article will be published Open Access without any charge, even though the journal might change to the Paid Access mode in the meantime.

I like your S2O model – how can I support it?

Campaign for our S2O project in your institution and your scientific community. Each subscriber helps us to maintain the service standard and high quality of our Open Access journals.

Where can I direct further questions about S2O and Open Access publishing?

Do not hesitate to contact us at:


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