PeerJ has a new way to pay: One low fee to publish in full open access

The OA publisher now offers one of the lowest APCs in its category, in addition to its innovative lifetime membership model.

Open Access publisher PeerJ has announced that researchers will now be able to pay a fixed article processing charge (APC) of $695 per article to publish in their award-winning journal for biology, medicine and the life sciences. This is one of the lowest fees out there, among similar academic journals, and is also available for the new PeerJ Computer Science journal. The original PeerJ membership pricing remains in place, and authors can still pay a one-time fee allowing them to publish for free thereafter.

Open Access publisher PeerJ has announced that researchers will now be able to pay a fixed article processing charge (APC) of $695 per article to publish in their award winning, peer-reviewed OA journal for biology, medicine and the life sciences. This is one of the lowest fees among similar academic journals, and is also available for the new PeerJ Computer Science journal.

Since its launch in 2013, PeerJ has operated on an innovative model based on a one-time fee giving authors lifetime benefits to publish their work with the publisher. The announcement of the new payment option came as International Open Access Week got underway around the world, on October 19th.

Jason Hoyt, PeerJ CEO and co-founder, said they have “received a lot of feedback that some funders were unwilling to pay for ‘lifetime benefits’, and in addition we have heard that it can be difficult to explain the normal membership option to co-authors. As a result, it made sense to offer an alternative payment option for people in that situation.” The original PeerJ membership pricing remains in place, and authors can still pay a one-time fee allowing them to publish for free thereafter. 

PeerJ’s APC will be among the lowest in the industry for equivalent services provided to scientific authors. At $695, it is hundreds or even thousands of dollars less than comparable multidisciplinary journals, which charge $1,100-3,000 for Open Access. “We’re able to charge less because we’ve built our publishing platform in-house, and refine it continuously to create one of the most efficient workflows for publishing academic research. In short, it takes less time and human effort to publish the same quality of peer-reviewed research at PeerJ than elsewhere,” said Hoyt.

While the cost is low, the quality of PeerJ's publishing experience is high. First decisions are rendered rapidly (with a current median time of about 24 days); articles undergo a thorough, professional peer-review process; and published articles are made available on a cutting edge publication platform. PeerJ articles are indexed in PubMed, PubMed Central, Web of Science, Google Scholar, Scopus and more.

Pete Binfield, co-founder of PeerJ, said that “in an era when publishers can charge thousands of dollars for open access publication, this new APC option shows that there is an answer for funders and authors who are demanding more responsibly priced Open Access publishing."


All works published in PeerJ are Open Access and published using a Creative Commons license (CC-BY 4.0). Everything is immediately available—to read, download, redistribute, include in databases and otherwise use—without cost to anyone, anywhere, subject only to the condition that the original authors and source are properly attributed. 

PeerJ was the recipient of the 2013 ALPSP Award for Publishing Innovation.