Publication & Open Access

The Royal Historical Society is actively engaged in ongoing debates about the future of arts and humanities publishing.

Our new Open-Access book series, New Historical Perspectives, is aimed at early career historians (with no publication fees for authors). Books are commissioned and edited by the RHS, and published by the Institute of Historical Research and the University of London. Find out more about the book series, and the first volumes, here.

The New Historical Perspectives series has a number of distinctive features:

  • published simultaneously in both hard copy and as fully Open-Access high-quality digital publications through the Humanities Digital Library, a new publishing platform from the University of London.
  • no fees for early career researchers publishing in the NHP series. The RHS and IHR will also advise on the correct licenses to ensure authors retain maximum control of their published works
  • includes a wide variety of different book types, including monographs, edited volumes, and shorter form works (such as those too long to be journal articles but not as long as traditional monographs).

We are engaging closely with wider debates about open access publishing:

  • July 2019: Interim Working Paper Plan S and the Hybrid History Journal Landscape: a preliminary mapping of current preparedness for Plan S open access implementation among UK and international ‘hybrid’ History journals and designed to elicit further evidence, feedback and corrections for a more comprehensive analysis to be published in October 2019.
  • May 2019: response to the Updated Guidance on Plan S, available here.
  • April 2019: RHS published a Working Paper assessing the implications of Plan S compliance for history researchers, focusing particularly on those with Wellcome funding.
  • February 2019: we submitted a response to the consultation on the ‘Plan S’ open-access initiative, which is available here.
  • January 2019: publication of a briefing paper, call for evidence and interim report, available here.

Publishing and the Research Excellence Framework

In early 2018, the government announced that for REF2027 policies on open access journal articles would be extended to include monographs.

UK Scholarly Communications Licence

Read our briefing (March 2018): The UK Scholarly Communications Licence: What it is, and why it matters for the Arts & Humanities.