These requirements and recommendations apply to journals and book series participating in KOALA consortial funding. They were developed based on the requirements of the Plan S initiative, supplemented by the Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing of COPE, DOAJ, OASPA and WAME. Unless otherwise stated, they apply to both journals and book series.

As of December 2021

Copyright und Licensing


Immidiate access to the full text
The full text must be accessible without delay, free of charge and without registration or other technical barriers.

Copyright retention
Authors must retain the copyright and right of use to their work.

CC BY as the standard license
All publications need to carry a Creative Commons license. CC BY should be the default license, while CC BY-SA and CC0 are also accepted. CC BY-ND can be used if an author explicitely requests it and the use is justified.

Machine-readable license in the metadata
The applied license needs to be embedded in a machine-readable format in the metadata.

Human-readable license in all text formats
All published text versions (HTML, PDF, ePub etc.) need to carry the applied license in plain text.


Machine-readable license in the full text
It is recommended to embed a machine-readable version of the applied license in the full text.

Published Open Access statement
The journal or book series should publish an Open Access statement, such as:

"All contributions to the journal XYZ are published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence. You may freely use the published contributions under the terms of the licence. There is no exclusive transfer of rights of use ("copyright transfer") to the journal. XYZ does not charge authors any costs for publication (so-called Article Processing Charges, APC/Book Processing Charges, BPC) or submission (so-called Submission Charges)."


Technical requirements, metadata and indexing


Long-term digital preservation
Digital long-term digital preservation of the content must be guaranteed (if necessary by a service provider).

The journal or book series must have an ISSN or eISSN.

Indexing in DOAJ or DOAB
The journal or the titles of the book series must be indexed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) or the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB) or in the process of being indexed.

Use of DOI or other PIDs for every article/volume
Each journal article or volume of a book series must be furnished with a separate Persistent Identifier (PID), e. g. DOI or URN. There must be versioning, e. g. for revisions.

Metadata under CC0
The publications (article, contribution to an anthology, volume, etc.) must be provided with metadata in a common, non-proprietary format (e. g. according to the Dublin Core scheme in JATS) under CC0.

Information about funding in the metadata
In the metadata of the publication (article, contribution to an anthology, volume, etc.), there must be a separate metadata field to be filled in optionally to indicate any funding received.

No data tracking
The technical systems used must not collect any data on usage that goes beyond what is technically necessary. The data collected must be described in a data protection declaration in accordance with the applicable regulations (e. g. GDPR).


Deposit Open Access Policy with Sherpa Romeo
It is recommended to register the self-archiving policy of the journal or book series in Sherpa Romeo.

PIDs at chapter level
For the individual volumes of a publication series, it is recommended that separate PIDs be assigned at chapter level. This applies to both contributions in anthologies and chapters in monographs.

Availability of citation data
It is recommended that bibliographic and citation data be made openly available in accordance with the principles of Open Citations.

Technical support or interfaces for PID for authors (ORCID iD) and institutions (ROR)
It is recommended to implement interfaces to support the use of Persistent Identifiers for authors (ORCID iD) and institutions (ROR).



Transparent funding without author-facing costs
Journals and publication series funded by KOALA consortia may not charge any author-facing costs, including charges for colour illustrations, overlong articles or similar. Transparency is expected towards the consortium leader with regard to financial expenditure. If the journal or book series, the editorial staff, or the editors regularly receive grants from third parties, this must be reported on the website.

Editorial policies, review processes, scope etc.


No mirror/sister journal
There must be no so-called mirror or sister journal, i.e. a thematically similar subscription journal where there is significant overlap in the editorial team.

Transparent ownership and management information
Information about the ownership and management of the journal or book series must be published on the publication's website.

Information about the editorial board and editors
Information on the editorial board and/or the editors of the journal or series must be published on the website. At a minimum, the names of the editorial board members or editors, their institutional affiliation and, if applicable, their role must be mentioned. At least one contact option (via contact form or by providing an email address) must be available.

Established (peer) review process
The journal or book series must have a solid process of content quality assurance (peer review) according to the standards of the discipline. If the practice of editorial review is common in the respective discipline, there must be at least two reviewers per text. Detailed information on the review process and the reviewers as well as the review criteria must be published on the website.

Publication of statistics on the number of submissions, reviews, etc.

Key statistics must be published annually:

  • Number of submissions
  • Number of reviews requested
  • Number of reviews received
  • Number of accepted submissions
  • Average time between submission and publication.

Information about the publication frequency
The publication frequency of the journal or book series must be published on the website. For book series, an approximate indication (e. g. "2-4 volumes per year") is sufficient.

Information about aims and scope
Information about the aims and scope of the journal or book series must be available on the website, e. g. in a section titled "About the journal".


Publication date, submission date and date of acceptance
It is recommended to publish the publication date, submission date and acceptance date for each article or volume.

Publication of instructions for authors
It is recommended to provide information and guidelines for authoring, formatting, citation styles, etc.

No advertising
It is recommended that no third party advertisements be placed on the website and that a statement about this is published on the website.

Ethical guidelines
It is recommended that ethical guidelines are established and published. These should address the following issues:

  • how complaints are handled;
  • how conflicts of interest are identified and made transparent;
  • if relevant, which policies on data sharing and reproducibility are in place;
  • if relevant, how how consent was obtained for publications that affect personal rights;
  • if relevant, which policies for publications regarding vulnerable populations, minors or research using animals are in place;
  • wich options there are for for post-publication discussions and corrections.

The pledging round for the bundle of six journals from the bundle "KOALA Mathematics and Computer Sciences 2024-2026" was successful! 54 Institutions

KOALA is still looking for more supporters! We extended the due date for signing up for financial contributions until 1 September 2023. Detailed…

The report “Konsortiale Open-Access-Lösungen aufbauen (KOALA): Erfahrungen mit Redaktionen und Verlagen” is published and freely available at…

First journals and book series set to change to collaborative Open Access funding