Crue Spanish Universities-CSIC Alliance and Elsevier agree four-year pilot for reading and open access publishing

Amsterdam, March 25, 2021

Elsevier, a global leader in research publishing and information analytics, the Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities (Crue Universidades Españolas) and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) have agreed on a new four-year pilot to support continued reading and open access (OA) publishing for universities and CSIC’s researchers in Elsevier’s hybrid journals. It is one of the largest transformative agreements Elsevier has reached and compliments the pilot agreements already in place across many European countries.

Elsevier will support the Crue-CSIC’s goals by enabling their researchers to publish OA across a broad range of Elsevier journals, making their latest research freely available at the point of publication. This agreement will support 59 participating Spanish institutions and will apply to articles accepted from January 1, 2021 through to the end of 2024.

Elsevier aims to find the right solutions to meet the diverse needs of academic institutions, researchers and funders around the world, while ensuring published research remains trusted and high quality.

Prof. Francisco Mora, Vice President of Crue, President of Crue’s Open Science Working Group and rector of the Universitat Politècnica de València said: “I am satisfied with the substantive step we have taken towards new forms of dissemination of science and above all towards the socialization of knowledge by ensuring its free access. It is important that both researchers and the general public have access to scientific publications without limitation since with their taxes they contribute to the creation of that knowledge.”

Jesús Marco, CSIC Vice President for Research said: “This agreement is part of the CSIC scholarly strategy of progressively moving away from the licensing model based on content subscription and payment for reading. The institution's commitment to Open Access as a lever for the promotion of Open Science means we aim to move our agreements with scientific publishers to a read-and-publish model. We are happy to have achieved this agreement with Elsevier, which is the sixth of its kind in the CSIC and to which we expect to be followed by many others. We are also very pleased to have achieved this in alliance with the Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities.”

Gino Ussi, Executive Vice President, Elsevier said: “Spanish researchers are generating more and more high-quality research. We are delighted to support the open access goals of the Crue-CSIC institutions and ensure that the truly world class researchers across Spain continue to be able to access high quality, trusted research in our journals. We thank Crue and CSIC for their collaborative approach which resulted in this tailored agreement.”

This agreement is the 17th transformative agreement Elsevier has reached with customers across Europe, the US, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Elsevier is testing and learning from these agreements enabling us to provide our customers with choices that meet their diverse needs.

In 2020 Elsevier published 81,000 open access articles, up 65 percent from 2019, making the company one of the largest open access publishers in the world. Nearly all of Elsevier's 2,600 journals now enable OA publishing.

Elsevier enables researchers to stay up to date with the latest science, technology, and health findings worldwide via ScienceDirect, Elsevier's leading platform of peer-reviewed scholarly literature. Overall, ScienceDirect gives researchers access to 16 million articles from over 2,600 journals published by Elsevier and our society partners.

Playing our part in widening free access beyond OA
Where the need is greatest and we can make the biggest difference in a sustainable way, Elsevier makes research completely free to access. In addition, all our reading and discovery platforms have extensive free-to-read options. Some examples of this commitment include:

  • Authors who publish with our journals are immediately able to share their peer reviewed, accepted manuscript on non-commercial personal homepages or blogs, within their institution, and with collaborators.
  • We offer free access to relevant research for health emergencies, including the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Patients and caregivers are provided with papers related to medicine and healthcare upon request to help them better understand the latest research on their conditions.
  • We ensure everyone can access a collection of the work from each year’s Nobel Prize winners.
  • We have also completely opened the archives for 140 journals, including Cell Press research journals after 12 months.
  • Through Research4Life, institutions in 120 low- and middle-income countries receive affordable access to nearly 100,400 peer reviewed resources. As founding member, Elsevier provides over a quarter of that content, as well as access to the abstract and citation database Scopus and trainings for librarians.
  • We automatically apply waivers or discounts to articles in fully gold OA journals for which all authors are based in a low-income country.


About Crue Spanish Universities
Crue Universidades Españolas is a non-profit association made up of a total of 76 Spanish universities: 50 public and 26 private. As the main interlocutor of Spanish universities with the central government, it plays a key role in all regulatory developments that affect Higher Education in Spain. Likewise, it promotes initiatives of different nature to foster relations with the productive and social fabric, as well as institutional relations, both national and international. In February 2019, Crue approved the document ‘University Commitment to Open Science’, which includes concrete measures for the implementation of Open Science.

About CSIC (the Spanish National Research Council)
CSIC is the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain and the third largest in Europe. CSIC consists of 120 institutes (67 on its own and 53 joint institutes in collaboration with 43 public universities). Total staff, distributed across institutes and central services amount to a bit more than 11,000, out of whom around 5,300 are directly devoted to doing research, including permanent, hired researchers, fellows and in training researchers. Belonging to the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, CSIC main objective is to develop and promote research that will help bring about scientific and technological progress, and for this purpose it collaborates with a wide network of Spanish and foreign entities. CSIC researchers contribute to more than 12.000 scientific publications per year, with nearly 70% of then in the top impact factor quartile journals.

About Elsevier
As a global leader in information and analytics, Elsevier helps researchers and healthcare professionals advance science and improve health outcomes for the benefit of society. We do this by facilitating insights and critical decision-making for customers across the global research and health ecosystems.

In everything we publish, we uphold the highest standards of quality and integrity. We bring that same rigor to our information analytics solutions for researchers, health professionals, institutions and funders.

Elsevier employs 8,100 people worldwide. We have supported the work of our research and health partners for more than 140 years. Growing from our roots in publishing, we offer knowledge and valuable analytics that help our users make breakthroughs and drive societal progress. Digital solutions such as ScienceDirect, Scopus, SciVal, ClinicalKey and Sherpath support strategic research management, R&D performance, clinical decision support, and health education. Researchers and healthcare professionals rely on our 2,500+ digitized journals, including The Lancet and Cell; our 40,000 eBook titles; and our iconic reference works, such as Gray's Anatomy. With the Elsevier Foundation and our external Inclusion & Diversity Advisory Board, we work in partnership with diverse stakeholders to advance inclusion and diversity in science, research and healthcare in developing countries and around the world.

Elsevier is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers.

Media contacts
Alejandro Carra
Crue Universidades Españolas
+34 913 896 297

Marta García
+34 915 681 476

Andrew Davis
Elsevier Communications, UK
+44 7393 242 466