European Journal of Law and Economics

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 475–503 | Cite as

The determinants of open access publishing: survey evidence from Germany

  • Thomas Eger
  • Marc Scheufen
  • Daniel Meierrieks


We discuss the results of a survey conducted in the fall of 2012 and covering 2151 researchers in Germany. We show that there are significant differences between the scientific disciplines with respect to researchers’ awareness of, and experience with, both open access (OA) journals and self-archiving. Our results reveal that the relevance of OA within a discipline may explain why researchers from particular disciplines do (not) publish OA. Furthermore, several aspects like copyright law, age, profession or the inherent reward system of a discipline also play a role. Consequently, the paper emphasizes that a “one-size-fits-all” approach, as promoted by most recent policy initiatives, is unlikely to provide an effective framework for shaping the future of scholarly publishing.


Academic publishing Open access Copyright Law and economics 

JEL Classification

C83 K11 O34 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Law and EconomicsHamburgGermany
  2. 2.Ruhr University of BochumBochumGermany
  3. 3.Albert Ludwigs University FreiburgFreiburgGermany

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