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NERL and Cambridge University Press Strike Open Access Agreement

By March 3, 2022March 7th, 2022Press Release

The NERL consortium has entered into an agreement with Cambridge University Press to support open access publishing in Cambridge journals.

From January 1st 2022, corresponding authors affiliated with participating NERL institutions can publish an unlimited number of research articles open access in Cambridge hybrid and gold journals at no additional cost. For participants this agreement also expands the number of journals licensed or otherwise sustains access to the complete package of journals offered by the publisher.

The NERL Program Council project team, led by Brigitte Weinsteiger, Gershwind & Bennett Family Associate Vice Provost for Collections & Scholarly Communications at the University of Pennsylvania, worked closely with Cambridge to establish the terms of the partnership, and interrogate the publisher’s transformative agreement model against NERL’s core values. The result is a financially sustainable agreement for both parties that furthers a number of shared priorities around the transition to a more equitable and open research landscape.

Research from NERL members accounts for over 25% of Cambridge’s US originated output, and this agreement ensures a new and significant portion of research in Cambridge journals can now be published open access.

Weinsteiger said, “I am delighted that NERL and Cambridge could arrive at a mutually beneficial agreement that not only expands global access to the important research coming out of NERL institutions, but also secures the necessary funding for Cambridge’s publishing while remaining financially sustainable for all parties.”

Greg Eow, President of the Center for Research Libraries, the administrative host of NERL, added: “This agreement marks an important moment for NERL. By signing its first Read and Publish Open Access agreement, NERL further demonstrates its commitment to partner with publishers to foster a healthy academic publishing environment for the good of all.”

Kellie O’Rourke, Head of Library Sales, Americas for Cambridge, said: “We have a long history of collaboration with NERL, and are delighted to bring this influential group of institutions into a transformative agreement. This partnership has huge potential to advance us toward our goal of becoming a majority open access journals publisher by 2025, and demonstrates our ongoing commitment to working with organizations of all types and sizes to secure sustainable open futures for the research we publish.”

Participating Institutions (correct as of 1st March 2022)


Amherst College North Carolina State University
Boston College Northeastern University
Brandeis University Princeton University
Brown University Providence College
Central Connecticut State University Stanford University
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
College of the Holy Cross Syracuse University
Columbia University University of Delaware
Cornell University University of Georgia
Dartmouth University University of Kentucky
Duke University University of Maryland – College Park
Emory University University of Massachusetts – Amherst
George Washington University University of New Hampshire
Georgetown University University of Notre Dame
Georgia Institute of Technology University of Pennsylvania
Georgia State University University of Pittsburgh
Johns Hopkins University University of Virginia
Mount Holyoke College Wesleyan University
New York University Yale University


About NERL: A national leader in negotiated licensing, NERL maximizes effective and sustainable access to content for its member institutions. By building and supporting alliances between higher education and the information industry, NERL serves as an advocate for the collective power and influence of academic libraries and their parent .

The NERL and Cambridge project was chaired by Brigitte Weinsteiger of the University of Pennsylvania with contributions by Sarah Forzetting of Stanford University, Jessica Morales of the University of Notre Dame, Ken Peterson formerly of Dartmouth University, Lindsay Cronk of the University of Rochester, Jesse Koennecke of Cornell University, and Scott Warren of Syracuse University.

About Cambridge University Press: Cambridge University Press is part of the University of Cambridge and is the academic publishing group of Cambridge University Press & Assessment. It publishes academic books and journals and serves customers in higher education through the provision of world-leading research and education products and services.