Association Insight International & European Association Insights Spring 2015 - Page 22

Association Insights | Article Publishing trends: 4 recommendations for scholarly and professional societies BY Chris Graf, Wiley Members continue to place high value on their society’s publishing program, but the economics of society publishing are shifting and publishing technology trends repeatedly add complexity and demand investment. In this short article, based on a presentation at the International & European Associations Congress in 2015, I share thoughts for the leaders of scholarly and professional societies who are interested in, and invested in, publishing. Economic trends In 2014, Outsell interviewed 20 scholarly and professional societies1. They found that income from meetings was 14% and membership was 10%, while 61% of revenue at the societies they talked with was derived from publishing. But the economics of publishing are shifting, impacting the sources of that income. The foremost shift in scholarly publishing economics comes from open access. Publishers are seeing modest 2.5% growth in scholarly and research publishing revenues, largely institutional subscriptions2. But the trend to watch from within those figures is the 34% growth in open access revenues. These take the form of article publication charges, paid by founders or institutions that mandate their research must be published “gold” open access3. Absent from these open access revenue growth figures, but an equally important driver of change and no less worthy of attention from society leaders, is “green” open access, again mandated by research funders. 22 | © Associations Network 2015 In society publishing, we’re seeing reasonable growth in advertising revenues at Wiley. PwC puts magazine advertising globally as scraping a return to growth in 2015, at less than 1%4. Our growth beats that comfortably. But the driving change, the trend to watch for advertising income, is in digital: PwC chalks-up growth in digital magazine advertising revenues at 17.6%. Leaders of scholarly and professional societies with a stake in research publishing need a way to handle open access, gold and green. And if their society banks advertising income from their magazine, then they need a way to handle digital adverts, too.