Tomorrow’s issue of Nature has a special section devoted to the future of academic publishing. The topics covered are not particularly surprising (see also my older posts on this subject), but I found the articles really informative and enjoyable to read, in particular “Open access: The true cost of science publishing”, a News Feature by Richard Van Noorden (see picture below), or the comment on OA licensing by John Wilbanks.
What strikes me is that the discussion about “the future of publishing” currently still centers around legal and economic problems rather than on a media transition. Don’t get me wrong, OA is a good thing and should be a top priority for decision makers in research, but a far more interesting question seems to me how communication of research results will be done in 50 years, how and which content will be produced, and how it will be accessed and used. An article by Jason Priem looks at this, but I find there are still a lot of question marks on this particular page.
* Actually, a lot more pages than one, but I just went with the original Nature title
Figure from Van Noorden, Nature, 2013.