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The future of publishing

After nearly 400 years in the slow-moving world of print, the scientific publishing industry is suddenly being thrust into a fast-paced online world of cloud computing, crowd sourcing and ubiquitous sharing. Long-established practices are being challenged by new ones – most notably, the open-access, author-pays publishing model. In this special issue, Nature takes a close look at the forces now at work in scientific publishing, and how they may play out over the coming decades.

Image credit: Brendan Monroe


  • Disciplinary action

    How scientists share and reuse information is driven by technology but shaped by discipline.

    Nature ( )


  • Sham journals scam authors

    Con artists are stealing the identities of real journals to cheat scientists out of publishing fees.

    Nature ( )

News Features

  • The library reboot

    As scientific publishing moves to embrace open data, libraries and researchers are trying to keep up.

    Nature ( )


  • Beyond the paper

    The journal and article are being superseded by algorithms that filter, rate and disseminate scholarship as it happens, argues Jason Priem.

    Nature ( )

  • A fool's errand

    Objections to the Creative Commons attribution licence are straw men raised by parties who want open access to be as closed as possible, warns John Wilbanks.

    Nature ( )

  • How to hasten open access

    Three advocates for a universally free scholarly literature give their prescriptions for the movement’s next push, from findability to translations.

    Nature ( )

Books and Arts

  • Q&A: Knowledge liberator

    Robert Darnton heads the world's largest collection of academic publications, the Harvard University Library system. He is also a driver behind the new Digital Public Library of America. Ahead of its launch in April, he talks about Google, science journals and the open-access debate.

    Nature ( )


  • Open to possibilities

    Opting for open access means considering costs, journal prestige and career implications.

    Nature ( )