A study of Canadian authorship in selected SPARC Alternative journals in the early years after their introduction
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The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) is an initiative of the Association of Research Libraries. In 1998 SPARC introduced the Alternative Program working with partners to launch new journals to compete with existing high-priced titles in the STM field. Currently there are 11 titles in this program listed on the website (http://www.arl.org/sparc/partner/partnerlist.html), three of which are freely accessible. This study examines the earliest adopters, Organic Letters and Evolutionary Ecology Research to determine author satisfaction with these journals. Organic Letters although originally a SPARC Alternative journal is no longer listed under this Program. A survey of Canadian authors in these journals in the first five years since inception provides insight into the reasons why they chose to publish in these journals and has definite implications for librarians. The results of these surveys are discussed in the larger framework of existing scholarly communication models.