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Version of 24 March 2006
This document is an Appendix to 'A Cost-Profile of Journal-Publishing'
© Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, 2005-06
Available under an AEShareNet licence or a Creative Commons licence.
This document is at http://www.rogerclarke.com/EC/JP-CP-ASJeJ.html
This Appendix presents an indicative cost-profile for a particular kind of journal-publisher.
The organisational category addressed here is an Association that publishes a single journal, in an electronic version in XHTML and/or PDF format, primarily as a service to its members, and secondarily for subscribers and (probably on a deferred basis) the general public. The revenue model is based on allocation of a proportion of the membership-fee.
It is an eJournal, and there is no hard-copy edition. Alternatively, a hard-copy version could be offered as a spin-off from the eJournal production process. This could be cost-neutral, with an additional fee aimed at recovering the costs of a small print-run or print-on-demand, plus handling and postage.
The eJournal may be published periodically (probably monthly or quarterly), or spasmodically. But an eJournal does not have to be constrained to the concept of an 'Issue', and publishing may be continual, as articles come out of the production process. An eJournal similarly does not have to be limited by page-counts or article-counts. It might publish 20-100 articles p.a.
For the purposes of computing per-article costs, however, the eJournal is assumed to resemble a hard-copy journal converted to electronic form, and to comprise quarterly Issues, each with 7-8 articles, for a total of 30 articles p.a.
The following tables reflect Bot et al. (1998), and information acquired from editors of three eJournals.
|Conception and articulation of the journal's name, scope, philosophy and modus operandi||Undertaken by senior academics|
|2||Preliminary negotiations within the intellectual community||Undertaken by senior academics|
|3||Preliminary negotiations with potential providers of operational resources||Undertaken by senior academics|
|4||Preliminary negotiations with potential providers of infrastructure||Undertaken by senior academics|
|5||Acquisition of investment and working capital||Undertaken by senior academics|
|6||Appointment of Board, Editor and Editorial Committee(s)||Undertaken by senior academics|
|7||Accumulation of Referees List||Undertaken by senior academics|
|8||Acquisition of infrastructure||Undertaken by senior academics, with some support from Association executives, and with the Web-site run probably using gratis, open source tools|
|9||Acquisition of operational resources||Undertaken by senior academics, but probably with a budget for an Assistant to the Editor|
|10||Acquisition of intellectual property (logos, trademarks, copyrights, licences)||Undertaken by senior academics, with some support from Association executives|
|11||Preparation of formal components of the printed journal and web-site||Undertaken by senior academics, with some support from Association executives|
|12||Preparation of web-site||Supervised by senior academics, with some support from Association executives, and undertaken by junior academics or students|
|13||Announcement to the community||Undertaken by senior academics|
|14||Issue of initial calls for papers||Undertaken by senior academics|
|Receipt, acknowledgement and management||Editor, Editorial Committee and Referees, supported by a paid assistant, and possibly also by junior academics or students. A 0.1 equivalent full-time (EFT) staff-member, say $10,000 p.a., equivalent to $2,500 per Issue or $330 per article|
|2||Conduct and management of the assessment process||Editor, Editorial Committee and Referees, generally gratis, but possibly with an honorarium for the Editor, and possibly allowances, free advertising or similar partial recompense|
|Production-editing||Partly by the Editor or a member of the Editorial Committee, partly by junior academics or students, and partly for-fee by an outsourced service provider. A 0.1 equivalent full-time (EFT) staff-member, say $10,000 p.a., equivalent to $2,500 per Issue or $330 per article|
|2||Cataloguing||Partly by the Editor or a member of the Editorial Committee, and partly by junior academics or students|
|Editorial||Effort by the Editor|
|2||Production-editing||Partly by the Editor or a member of the Editorial Committee, partly
by junior academics or students, and partly for-fee by an outsourced service
provider, but included within the production-editing costs immediately
|3||Production||For the Web-site, by the Editor, partly supported by a junior academic or student|
|5||Distribution||Network costs, absorbed by the Association|
|Marketing||Limited, undertaken primarily by senior academics, with some support by the Association|
|2||Customer relationship management||An Association responsibility and cost|
|3||Archive management||An Association responsibility and cost|
|4||Indexing||Dependent on commercial search-engines such as Google, or using an on-site search-engine, probably open-source and gratis|
|5||Governance||Undertaken by the Editor and Editorial Committee, in conjunction with Association executives|
|Editor and Editorial Committee(s)||Undertaken by senior academics|
|2||A pool of referees||Undertaken by senior academics|
|3||Communications channels||Arranged by senior academics, supported by junior academics or students|
|4||Norms for communications and formatting||Undertaken by senior academics|
|5||Production facilities||Undertaken by the Editor and Editorial Committee, in conjunction with Association executives||6||Subscription-list facilities||Undertaken by the Editor and Editorial Committee, in conjunction with Association executives|
|7||Distribution mechanisms||Undertaken by the Editor and Editorial Committee, in conjunction with Association executives|
|Interest on investment capital||Very little|
|2||Interest on working capital||Very little|
|Operations – Submission-Related||$10,000 p.a., equivalent to $2,500 per Issue or $330 per article|
|Operations – Article-Related||$10,000 p.a., equivalent to $2,500 per Issue or $330 per article|
|Operations – Issue-Related||Negligible|
|Operations – Generic||Negligible|
|TOTAL||$20,000 p.a., $5,000 per Issue or $660 per article|
The undertaking is funded from the membership fees paid by Members of the Association, perhaps to some extent offset by non-member subscriptions (particularly libraries and other institutions) and advertising. For an Association of 10,000 Members, the publishing costs of the journal are up to about $2 p.a. (of a fee of perhaps $300). For a small specialist group of 250 members, on the other hand, the costs would be closer to $90 p.a.
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From the site's beginnings in August 1994 until February 2009, the infrastructure was provided by the Australian National University. During that time, the site accumulated close to 30 million hits. It passed 40 million by the end of 2012.
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Created: 31 March 2005 - Last Amended: 24 March 2006 by Roger Clarke - Site Last Verified: 15 February 2009
This document is at www.rogerclarke.com/EC/JP-CP-ASJeJ.html