U15 Statement on Sustainable Publishing


Access to research and scholarly outputs is essential for scientific discovery, innovation, and education. To maximize knowledge transfer and impact, our researchers’ work must be made readily available around the globe. Research-intensive universities also require timely and continuing access to international research results and scholarship in order to advance and disseminate knowledge, and to develop the next generation of researchers. This research life cycle depends upon a healthy communication ecosystem anchored in the following principles:

Open Access

The U15 shares international concerns regarding the necessity for an accessible and sustainable model of scholarly publishing. We are committed to the widest possible access to research and scholarly outputs.

Public Interest

An individual or an institution’s access to research results should not be limited by their ability to pay for that access. The U15 is committed to disseminating scholarly publications and other research outputs as widely as possible in order to maximize their economic, cultural, social and health benefits, and the effectiveness of public investments in research.


Critical evaluation of research lies at the heart of intellectual discourse and scientific method. The U15 supports rigorous peer review processes and effective research impact measures in all forms of academic publishing including articles, monographs and books. It also recognises that there is an unavoidable cost for the substantial expertise that is contributed to scholarly endeavours in the humanities and social sciences by not-for-profit university presses.


The highest possible proportion of public dollars invested in research and education should be spent directly on research and education. While supportive of strong private-sector relationships, and understanding the complexities of scholarly publishing, the U15 is concerned that the business model that is prevalent among for-profit book and journal publishers may impose undue financial pressure on the research and education ecosystem.


The digital environment provides new opportunities for accessing and preserving a wide range of research outputs within a global knowledge commons. The U15 encourages the collaborative development of new models of scholarly communications that would benefit the academy and the public by leveraging the power of the digital age in ways that enhance the quality of scholarly and scientific publications.


Statements & Releases

December 13, 2017
Ottawa, ON (December 13, 2017) – The U15 Group of Canadian Research Universities welcomes Science Minister Kirsty Duncan’s announcement today of the first Canada 150 Research [...]
November 2, 2017
Ottawa, ON (November 2, 2017) – Today Minister Kirsty Duncan announced changes to the Canada Research Chairs program that would limit the number of renewals. [...]
October 27, 2017
Ottawa, ON (October 27, 2017) – The U15 Group of Canadian Research Universities welcomes the announcement of the Canada Research Coordinating Committee by Ministers Duncan [...]