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University of Groningen Library Open access How to publish open access

Predatory publishers

When you submit your article to a journal, make sure that you are not dealing with a predatory publisher. Predatory publishers abuse the open access model by collecting Article Processing Charges without providing proper editorial and peer-review services. You can often recognize predatory publishers by their aggressive marketing strategies and spam emails. Yet predatory journals may look legitimate at first sight.


The following questions may help you assess whether you are dealing with a predatory journal:

  • Is the journal listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)? Journals listed here have to meet a range of ethical and quality standards.
  • Is the publisher a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), which promotes integrity in research and publication? (N.B. Not every high-quality journal is a member of COPE.)
  • Does the publisher belong to the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA)? OASPA members commit to a code of conduct which guarantees the quality of their journals.
  • Can the journal be found in a reliable database such as Web of Science, Scopus, PubMed or another database in your specific field of research?
  • Does the publisher offer clear information about peer review and the costs of open access?
Think, check, submit

The Think, Check, Submit initiative provides a checklist which can help you to identify trusted journals in which to publish your research.

If you have questions or are uncertain about the quality of a given journal, please get in touch with us for advice.

Open access support: openaccess | openaccess

Do you have questions on open access that are specific to your discipline? Contact one of the open science ambassadors at the University's faculties.

Last modified:22 April 2024 4.47 p.m.
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