Business model

PTPBio charges neither readers nor authors, and meets its obligations to its publisher through the support of several sponsors.

Universities and academic libraries are increasingly burdened by the rising costs of purchasing the products of scholarship, including research conducted at those same institutions. Meanwhile, the growth of open-access publishing has made some scholarship available without cost to readers or libraries. However, the move to free and open access has often been achieved not by cutting costs, but by shifting costs to authors and their funders, typically in the form of expensive “article processing charges.”

It doesn't need to work that way. The funds flowing to publishers do not compensate authors or referees, who offer their work for free, and only sometimes compensate editors. High-quality production can be done inexpensively or free with rapidly-developing electronic tools. Rather, costs are rising because funds are flowing out of academic institutions to commercial publishers, which are dispensable. Academic libraries have long-standing expertise at hosting and archiving research, and thus can straightforwardly become electronic publishers. When professors volunteer as editors, the remaining costs are minimal, sustaining libraries' maintenance and internet-hosting services.

It follows that with the support of Michigan Publishing at University of Michigan Library, PTPBio can be produced and made free to the world annually for about $1500 to $2000 USD. The journal's entire annual operating budget is less than the cost of making a single article open access at related journals. Similarly, the journal's entire annual operating budget is in the range of what a single library may pay for a single closed-access journal subscription. PTPBio's business model therefore offers a far better deal to libraries, and in turn to the students and taxpayers who are normally the ultimate funders of scholarship. If adopted more widely, it would save immense quantities of money academic institutions now spend to purchase access to scholarship, much of it originally generated by the institutions themselves.


Still, the journal must meet its low costs. So, PTPBio seeks academic libraries, research centers, and other institutions or individuals interested in supporting its mission and the free global availability of its articles. The journal will gratefully receive contributions of any amount, and will happily share our annual report with potential sponsors.

Donations may be made by check to “Hofstra University” with “PTPBio, Fund 80140” on the memo line. They can be mailed to: PTPBio Journal, 104 Heger Hall, 115 Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY 11549-0115, USA. Please email the journal with any questions, or if you would like to receive a formal invoice from Hofstra University, or to arrange to transfer funds without cutting a check.