Editorial Dialectica Goes Open Access

Philipp Blum

Dialectica Goes Open Access

We are happy to announce that Dialectica is now an Open Access journal. Starting with this issue, the journal has adopted the so-called “Platinum” or “Diamond” Open Access model under which we do not charge access fees to readers nor article processing charges to authors. Thanks to the generous support of the Swiss National Science Foundation (CRSK-1-190939) and swissuniversities (OAHUBSP), all new issues are available at dialectica.philosophie.ch. In the near future, we hope to make freely available a full bibliography and a detailed submission statistics.

We hope that this audacious step will increase our readership, attract more and better submissions and reward our many industrious referees, without whom our journal would not be possible. By making all tools and techniques devised for our OA-transition freely available, by documenting the transition process itself, putting the reasoning behind our decisions out for your scrutiny and disclosing the difficulties encountered in establishing a sustainable financial model, we also hope to convince other well-established philosophy journals to free themselves of the increasingly tight grip of profit-oriented publishers and to turn the ideals of Open Science into action.

The success of our discipline’s transition to Open Access will depend on four factors:

  • that established journals, in particularly the most important ones, start the transition to Open Access immediately, with the aim to sever their links to for-profit publishers;
  • that the many new journals coming into existence, reflecting in theme and character the diversity of our growing discipline, are all fully (i.e. Platinum) Open Access;
  • that philosophers strongly support the transition by making a collective decision to only submit to, referee for, and edit Open Access journals;
  • that our funding bodies make their support contingent on publication in OA venues, and that new funding models are devised which allow universities and libraries to directly fund the running costs of OA journals – an “OA coalition” of philosophy journals should be created to press for this cause.

While we hope to have contributed to the first of these objectives, our transition has two further goals. First, to strengthen our institutional basis in Switzerland, notably by recruiting more Swiss philosophers into the Editorial Committee. Second, to make the refereeing process faster and more positive-oriented. In our new “fishpond” model, members of the Editorial Committee pick anonymized papers that they hope to promote and send them out to referees. If, based on the reports, they make a successful case to the committee, the papers are accepted. Submissions are sent back to the authors after one month if they have not been picked up. This is not to be understood as a (desk-) rejection, but simply as an acknowledgment of the limitedness of our resources. We hope that this triple-blind, positive-oriented process will shorten the turn-around time for authors and make the editorial and referee work more attractive.

The ongoing transition process has already benefitted from much help, including much needed technical advice by Denis Maier and Albert Krewinkel. Let me thank, first and foremost, my co-editor Fabrice Correia, the members of the Editorial Board and the Editorial Committee, Julien Dutant, the head of the Dialectica OA initiative, the members of the SNSF Spark project team (Jonathan Biedermann, Sharon Casu, Thomas Hodgson, Nemo Krüger, Ryan Miller, Sandro Räss, Marco Toscano, Christian Weibel), our library consultants Rebecca Iseli Büchi and Gian-Andri Töndury and the new managing editor of Dialectica, Marco Schori – philosophers who sacrificed some of their research time to make a practical impact in our common quest to make the world a little better.