Volume 39, Issue 1, 2009

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Articles:

I POLICY DEBATES AND CONTROVERSIES
  • Bailing out the Titanic with a Thimble (Steve Keen)
  • Fiscal Stimulus Packages and Uncertainty in Times of Crisis Economic Policy for Open Economies (Ansgar Belke)
II RECENT TRENDS IN ECONOMIC RESEARCH
  • The Economics of Open Access Publishing (Christian Zimmermann)
  • The Stratified Economics of Open Access (John Willinsky)
  • But what have you done for me lately? Commercial Publishing, Scholarly Communication, and Open-Access (John P. Conley and Myrna Wooders)
  • Publishing an E-Journal on a Shoe String: Is It a Sustainable Project? (Piero Cavaleri, Michael Keren, Giovanni B. Ramello, and Vittorio Valli)
  • Open Access Models and their Implications for the Players on the Scientific Publishing Market (Steffen Bernius, Matthias Hanauske, Wolfgang König, Berndt Dugall)
  • Open Access Economics Journals and the Market for Reproducible Economic Research (B. D. McCullough)
  • Estimating the Potential Impacts of Open Access to Research Findings (John Houghton and Peter Sheehan)
  • The Economics of Open Bibliographic Data Provision (Thomas Krichel and Christian Zimmermann)
III PRACTITIONERS’ FORUM
  • The Devil is in the Detail: Hints for Practical Optimisation. A Comment (B. D. McCullough)
IV BOOK REVIEWS
  • Economic Gangsters: Corruption, Violence, and Poverty of Nations (Raymond Fisman and Edward Miguel)

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Bailing out the Titanic with a Thimble

Steve Keen

Pages: 3-24

Abstract: -

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Fiscal Stimulus Packages and Uncertainty in Times of Crisis Economic Policy for Open Economies

Ansgar Belke

Pages: 25-46

Introduction:
Policymakers in the EU member states and around the world, as for instance in Australia, are currently shaping rescue packages to prevent the financial crisis hitting their economies with unmitigated force. Each government is responding to the emerging problems with a country-specific set of measures. Given the global nature of the crisis, would coordinated action at the European level not be a better approach? Was the German government – much-criticized for its initial reluctance to adopt massive fiscal stimulation measures – right after all to exploit the option value of waiting in a situation of high uncertainty? The answer to the second question is a qualified ‘yes’. However, the answer to the first one is more complex and crucially depends on how reasonable it appears to model the impact of the economic crisis as an exogenous demand shock which has hit the euro area countries.

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The Economics of Open Access Publishing

Christian Zimmermann

Pages: 49-52

Introduction:
This special issue of Economic Analysis and Policy is devoted to try and understand the academic publishing industry and in particular the recent  move towards open access, as EAP has done in 2008. The various articles examine the motivations, the challenges and the roadblocks for authors, editors, publishers, libraries and readers. It also highlights some of the benefits of open access beyond the obvious increase in readership. Several examples from journal editors, content management providers and bibliographic data distributors are also provided.

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The Stratified Economics of Open Access

John Willinsky

Pages: 53-70

Abstract:
There is a growing recognition within the academic community that ‘open access’ to research and scholarship can increase its value and reach. A variety of open access models have developed over the last twenty years, including author self-archiving, immediate (sponsored) open access, delayed open access, and article-processing-fee open access. Yet the economics of open access is being largely determined, at this point, by the interests of a stratified scholarly publishing market that can be roughly divided among independent journals, scholarly society publishers, and commercial publishers. Each of these market segments is experimenting with forms of open access that hold promise for sustaining, if not extending, the segment’s current position. This paper reviews the economics of these open access models, while drawing attention to the consequences of this market stratification for access to knowledge and the sustainability of scholarly publishing as a whole.

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But what have you done for me lately? Commercial Publishing, Scholarly Communication, and Open-Access

John P. Conley and Myrna Wooders

Pages: 71-87

Abstract:
We discuss our experience in both commercial and open-access publishing. We argue that, in the papyrocentric (paper-centered) era before 1990, commercial publishers served a useful and necessary purpose. In the electronic era, post 2000, the academy has very little to gain from commercial publishers, who may actually impede rather than facilitate scholarly communication. We consider the costs of running an open-access journal and argue that they are considerably less than is commonly supposed. We describe the role of workflow and content-management software systems and how they can facilitate not only open-access journals, but also working-paper series, conference organization, scholarly societies, and other forms of scholarly communication.

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Publishing an E-Journal on a Shoe String: Is It a Sustainable Project?

Piero Cavaleri, Michael Keren, Giovanni B. Ramello, and Vittorio Valli

Pages: 89-101

Abstract:
The aim of this article is to report on an experiment in publishing an open access journal and learn from it about the larger field of open access publishing. The experiment is the launch of the European Journal of Comparative Economics (EJCE), an on-line refereed and open access journal, founded in 2004 by the European Association for Comparative Economic Studies and LIUC University in Italy. They embarked upon this project in part to respond to the rising concentration in the market for scientific publishing and the resulting use of market power to raise subscription prices and restrict access to scientific output. We had hoped that open access journals could provide some countervailing power and increase competition in the field. Our experience running a poorly endowed journal has shown that entry to the field may be easy, yet that making it a sustainable enterprise is not straightforward.

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Open Access Models and their Implications for the Players on the Scientific Publishing Market

Steffen Bernius, Matthias Hanauske, Wolfgang König, Berndt Dugall

Pages: 103-115

Abstract:
Open Access (OA) as a new form of distributing scientific literature is broadly accepted by scholars, but in most disciplines the realization of the paradigm is progressing rather slowly. The reason for this lies, on the one hand, in a lack of incentives for individual authors. On the other hand, there are many different approaches to OA and their effects on market participants are complex. In this article we regard the implications of different OA models for scholars, publishers, libraries and funding organizations and try to explain the motivations behind the actions currently taking place on the scientific publishing market.

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Open Access Economics Journals and the Market for Reproducible Economic Research

B. D. McCullough

Pages: 117-126

Abstract:
Most economics journals take no substantive measures to ensure that the results they publish are replicable. To make the data and code available so that published results can be checked requires an archive. Top economics journals have been adopting mandatory data+code archives in the past few years. The movement toward mandatory data+code archives has yet to reach the open access journals. This is paradoxical; given their emphasis on making articles readily available, one would think that open access journals also would want to make data and code readily available. Open access economics journals should adopt mandatory data+code archives en masse. Doing so will give them a competitive advantage with respect to traditional economics journals.

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Estimating the Potential Impacts of Open Access to Research Findings

John Houghton and Peter Sheehan

Pages:  127-142

Abstract:
Advances in information and communication technologies are disrupting traditional models of scholarly publishing, radically changing our capacity to reproduce, distribute, control, and publish information. The key question is whether there are new opportunities and new models for scholarly publishing that would better serve researchers and better communicate and disseminate research findings. Identifying access and efficiency limitations under the subscription publishing model, this paper explores the potential impacts of enhanced access to research outputs using a modified Solow-Swan model, which introduces ‘accessibility’ and ‘efficiency’ parameters into calculating returns to R&D. Indicative impact ranges are presented for Government, Higher Education and Australian Research Council R&D expenditures. We conclude that there may be substantial benefits to be gained from more open access to research findings.

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The Economics of Open Bibliographic Data Provision

Thomas Krichel and Christian Zimmermann

Pages: 143-152

Abstract:
In this paper, we discuss the provision of bibliographic data as an extension of the open source concept. Our particular concern is the sustainability of such endeavors. We describe the RePEc (Research Papers in Economics) project, probably the largest ‘open source’ bibliographic database. It demonstrates that open-source bibliographic data collection is sustainable.

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The Devil is in the Detail: Hints for Practical Optimisation. A Comment

B. D. McCullough

Pages: 155-157

Abstract: -

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Book Reviews:

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