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OA 'Muscle'

Two major private biomedical research funders have joined Plan S, the recently launched European open-access initiative, ScienceInsider reports.

Science Europe, a coalition of European funding agencies, developed Plan S, which centers on 10 key principles, especially requiring publicly funded researchers to publish their results in open-access journals. Eleven countries including the UK, France, and the Netherlands signed on to the program, which was announced in September.

Now, ScienceInsider reports that the Wellcome Trust and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which fund $1.3 billion and $1.2 billion in research each year, respective, have joined the initiative. This, it says, will "add a lot of funding muscle" to the program.

The two charities had previously championed open-access publishing, though allowed their grantees to publish in hybrid open-access journals, in which free and subscription articles appear side by side, but will no longer allow that. Wellcome tells ScienceInsider it had tolerated that approach as part of a transition to open access, but says that transition is over.