Submission and Publication Fees for Sociological Science will be structured as follows:
Submission fees are collected through our submission site, Scholastica.
- Full professor: $300 + $15/500 words
- Associate professor: $150 + $15/500 words
- Assistant professor: $50 + $15/500 words
- Students, post-docs, non-tenure track faculty: $0 + $10/500 words
Rank refers to the most senior co-author on the paper. Individuals with positions not listed here should consult the editorial staff for more information.
Per word publication fees are computed in 500-word increments.
Publication fees do not include typesetting of accepted manuscripts in LaTeX, which is the responsibility of the author(s). For authors who do not wish to convert their accepted manuscript to LaTeX themselves, Sociological Science charges a modest conversion fee. See here for more details.
Sociological Science accepts payment by check, credit card, and PayPal. In cases where your institution requires establishing a vendor relationship between the journal and the institution, Sociological Science charges an additional $75 to complete the necessary paperwork.
1) Why does Sociological Science charge publication fees?
As an open access journal, Sociological Science makes all publications immediately available to any reader, anywhere. There are no subscription fees, and no paywalls. Yet we still have operating costs. Submission and publication fees go toward defraying those costs and maintaining the viability of the journal. In the absence of publication fees for accepted papers, we would either have to charge substantially higher submission fees or turn to institutional support (advertising does not seem a viable alternative at this time). We decided against high submission fees in order to encourage a wide range of submissions and to encourage authors to take risks. We have forgone institutional support in order to maintain editorial independence, although it is possible that in the future we will find a partner who can support us without compromising this principle.
2) Where does the money go?
Sociological Science is a not-for-profit journal. All sources of revenue (submission and publication fees) go toward covering our expenses as a journal. The expenses involved in moving a manuscript from submission to publication include:
- On-line tools for submissions and the review process
- Document preparation and typesetting
- On-line publication and dissemination
- Archiving, registration in the DOI system, etc.
We have worked hard throughout the development of the journal to keep these expenses as low as possible by using low-cost and open-source solutions. For example, we have worked with Scholastica, an academic publishing startup devoted to providing a high-quality, low-cost alternative to the dominant (and expensive) editorial management systems like Manuscript Central. This website has been developed using WordPress, and we use a low-cost online hosting service. We ask authors to do the bulk of the typesetting using LaTeX (free). Currently, Sociological Science is run entirely on the blood, sweat and tears (and some laughter) of the editorial staff; the journal has no employees.
3) Why do you have a per-500-word publication fee?
We do this for two reasons. First, many of the costs of producing an individual paper are variable costs – for example, longer manuscripts take longer to copyedit. Setting our fee in this way reflects this fact. Second, the editorial staff places a high value on concision. By charging by the word, we put that principle into practice.
4) Why do different people pay different flat fees per paper?
We expect senior faculty to subsidize the publication opportunities for junior scholars.
5) What do I get for the publication fee?
- Rapid publication of your accepted manuscript, with worldwide immediate access.
- You retain copyright under a Creative Commons license, unlike traditional journals where you surrender copyright to the journal.
- Your paper will be archived in independent, permanent open access archives.
5) How do the publication fees for Sociological Science compare to others?
Here are some examples:
- PLOSOne: $1,350/article
- BioMed Central: $1,755-$2,300/article
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: $75/page + $1,350 Open Access charge
- PeerJ: $139/author post-acceptance price, limit one paper per year
- Bentham Open Sociology Journal: $250/article
6) How do you know you have gotten the pricing right?
We don’t. As this article in Nature suggests, it is very hard to estimate the costs of running a scholarly journal — the available estimates vary widely (between $290/article to $20,000/article). In addition to the difficulty of estimating our costs in advance, it is difficult to estimate the volume and mix of papers. Our current pricing structure is our best guess. We reserve the right to change it in the future, but if and when we do so we promise to be open and transparent about the reasons for doing so. Our commitment will always be to operate at the lowest cost possible consistent with the highest standards of excellence.
7) Do authors from lower-income countries have to pay publication fees?
No. Publication fees are waived for authors from countries characterized by the World Bank as low-income and lower-middle-income. See here for the list of countries.
8) Who is responsible for making the payment?
Whoever submits the manuscript is responsible for paying or arranging for their institution to pay the publication fee. Sociological Science will provide a receipt of payment but will not invoice institutions.