Hybrid Journals: Ensuring Systematic and Standard Discoverability of the Latest Open Access Articles

Santiago Chumbe, Brian Kelly, Roderick Macleod

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


An important current challenge for research information providers is ensuring the automated discovery of Open Access (OA) content in hybrid journals. We found no evidence of discovery services that are able to systematically identify the crucially important free full-text availability of OA articles regardless of where and how such articles have been published (i.e., in fully OA journals or in hybrid journals). A solution is important because hybrid journals are proliferating and consequently the chances of missing OA articles is real and is happening. Nearly all of the major publishers now provide such journals in order to take advantage of recent changes in research funder requirements, and to be competitive in the new OA business model. By working with a group of scholarly publisher partners and by using standard metadata elements that publishers are already familiar with, we show a systematic and standardized manner to identify OA at the article level. Our proposal is to embed OA-related elements in the metadata freely exposed by publishers for aggregators and discovery services. For example, in the Table of Content (TOC) Really Simple Syndication feeds the publishers use to announce new journal issues and content. Based on the initial results obtained, we discuss the capabilities of our solution, and evaluate the impact produced by our application in the systematic discoverability of OA content from the participating hybrid journals, using an implementation done with the freely available journal current awareness service—JournalTOCs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-155
Number of pages13
JournalSerials Librarian
Issue number1-4
Early online date19 May 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • hybrid journal
  • JEMO (Journal TOCs: Expanding Market Opportunities)
  • JournalTOCs
  • metadata standards
  • Open Access
  • research discovery
  • RSS feeds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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