The Open Scholarship Initiative
Working together in partnership with UNESCO to improve the future of open

OSI Governance


OSI is a project created and led by the Science Communication Institute (SCI), a US-based 501c3 nonprofit public charity. The executive director of  SCI appoints the program manager for OSI (for the past three years, the same person has filled both roles). The OSI summit group serves as the strategic management arm of OSI, and is comprised of representatives from most of OSI’s stakeholder groups, as well as OSI’s steering committee. OSI’s steering committee is the senior executive team; most members have helped steer OSI from its outset in 2014. In practice, the full OSI group is a “coalition of the willing.” Leaders and participants are not paid and travel costs to conferences are most often paid for out of their institutions’ budgets.

  • Program Director, Glenn Hampson
  • Summit group chair, T. Scott Plutchak
  • Summit group members: See table below
  • Steering group members: See table below
  • OSI participants: See participants list in this website

OSI summit group

  Abel Packer Co-founder and director, SciELO Scholarly journal editors
  Ali Andalibi Associate Dean of Research, Science, George Mason University Research universities
  Anthony Watkinson Principal Consultant CIBER Research Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
X Bhanu Neupane Program Manager, UNESCO Government policy organizations
X Bryan Alexander President, Bryan Alexander Consulting Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
X Christopher Erdmann Chief Strategist for Research Collaboration, NCSU Libraries Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
X Claudia Holland Scholarly Communication Coordinator, Mississippi State Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
  Colleen Campbell Director, OA2020 Partner Development, Max Planck Digital Library Non-university research institutions
  David Mellor Project Manager, Journal and Funder Initiatives, Center for Open Science Open knowledge groups and “born-open” publishers
X Eric Olson US Outreach Coordinator, ORCID Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
X Frances Pinter Founder and executive director, Knowledge Unlatched Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
  Gemma Hersh VP, Policy and Communication, Elsevier Commercial publishers
  Glen Campbell Managing Director, BMJ North America Commercial publishers
X Glenn Hampson (ex-officio) Program Director, OSI  
  Jason Steinhauer Director, Lepage Center for History in the Public Interest, Villanova University Open knowledge groups and “born-open” publishers
  Jennifer Pesanelli Deputy executive director, FASEB Scholarly societies
X John Warren Head, Mason Publishing Group, George Mason University and library publishers
X Joyce Ogburn Digital Strategies and Partnerships Librarian, Appalachian State University Research universities
  Kim Barrett Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Editor-in-Chief, The Journal of Physiology Scholarly journal editors
  Margaret Winker Secretary, World Association of Medical Editors Scholarly journal editors
X Mel DeSart Head, Engineering Library and Head, Branch Libraries, University of Washington Scholarly libraries and library groups
  Nancy Davenport University Librarian, American University Research universities
  Patrick Herron Senior Research Scientist for Information Science + Studies, Duke University Research universities
  Richard Gedye Director of Outreach Programmes, STM and Publisher Coordinator, Research4Life Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
X Rick Anderson Associate Dean for Collections & Scholarly Communication, University of Utah Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
  Rob Johnson Director, Research Consulting Government policy organizations
X Scott Plutchak (chair) Director of Digital Data Curation Strategies, UAB Scholcomm & publishing industry experts
  Sioux Cumming Programme Manager Journals Online, INASP Open knowledge groups and “born-open” publishers
  Win van der Stelt EVP Strategic Relations, SpringerNature Commercial publishers


Summit group construction (ideal)

Stakeholder group Percent of OSI delegates Summit reps (25)
1. Research universities 35% 7
2. Commercial publishers 10% 2
3. Scholarly societies and society publishers 5% 1
4. Non-university research institutions and publishers 5% 1
5. Open knowledge groups and “born-open” publishers 5% 1
6. University presses and library publishers 5% 1
7. Government policy organizations 5% 1
8. Funders, public and private 5% 1
9. Scholarly libraries and library groups 5% 1
10. Broad faculty and education groups 5% 1
11. Tech industry 5% 1
12. Scholarly research infrastructure groups 5% 1
13. Other universities and colleges 5% 1
14. Scholarly communications and publishing industry experts Up to 20 per meeting 1
15. Active researchers and academic authors Up to 20 per meeting 1
16. Scholarly journal editors Up to 10 per meeting 1
17. Journalists Up to 10 per meeting 1
18. Elected officials Up to 10 per meeting 1


The current composition of the summit group doesn’t match the target composition as noted in the above table. The reason for this mismatch is two-fold:

  1. The current group contains summit members plus members of the OSI steering committee—a core group of 10 advisors who have helped guide OSI since its inception. There is significant overlap between these two groups. And,
  2. Summit group volunteers were not successfully recruited for all stakeholder groups.

The gender balance of this current group is also skewed. The full OSI group is close to balanced, but the 4/11/18 iteration of the summit group skews male as a consequence of who accepted the invitation to participate in this group.

Draft currently under consideration

OSI Governance Guidlines


The principles and practices of scholarly communication are critical to the advancement of research and research knowledge.  OSI’s mission is to build a robust framework for communication, coordination and cooperation among all nations and stakeholders in order to: improve scholarly communication; find common understanding and just, achievable, sustainable, inclusive solutions; and to work collectively toward these solutions that increase the amount of research information available to the world, as well as the number of people who can access this information regardless of location or financial capability. The guiding principles of OSI are to involve the entire stakeholder community in a collaborative effort; to value all stakeholder voices and perspectives; to thoughtfully consider the consequences of all approaches; to coordinate and collaborate on developing joint solutions and efforts; and to pursue and continue refining solutions over time to ensure their implementation, effectiveness, and success.


  • SCI: The Science Communication Institute, a 501c3 non-profit charity (formerly known as the National Science Communication Institute, or nSCI)
  • OSI: The Open Scholarship Initiative, created and presently managed by SCI
  • OSI management: The OSI program director, any staff reporting to the director, and any oversight above the director from SCI or UNESCO
  • OSI participant: An individual who belongs to the OSI listserv
  • OSI summit group: An advisory group for OSI comprised of OSI participants
  • UNESCO: The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Article 1: Goals

The goals and priorities of OSI are defined by OSI management, the OSI summit group (defined below), and OSI participants subject to the provisions described herein.

Article 2: Mechanisms

The mechanisms for achieving OSI’s goals will vary and evolve over time, including but not limited to online conversations and annual meetings.

Article 3:  Authority

OSI relies on participation and feedback from OSI participants to ensure that the focus and priorities of OSI’s activities reflect the focus and priorities of the broad stakeholder community in scholarly communication and scholarly publishing.

3.1. Stewardship. Until such time and unless otherwise desired by OSI participants, the stewardship responsibility for this effort will rest with the Science Communication Institute (SCI). The SCI executive director appoints the program director for OSI, subject to such considerations that SCI may deem appropriate (such as consultation with OSI member and the SCI board).

  1. OSI program director. The OSI program director is responsible for hiring program staff, raising funds, managing all other aspects of OSI, and making all final decisions regarding the operation and financing of OSI, in consultation with partners as they may exist over time on strategic matters and with thorough and careful consideration given to input provided by the OSI summit group. The OSI program director reports to and is overseen by SCI (as described above).

3.2. Consultation. On all matters related to the content and substance of OSI, the OSI program director shall work together with OSI participants and the OSI summit group to produce programs, products, position papers and more, which accurately reflect the sense of the OSI community. The OSI program director shall solicit and consider advice and feedback provided by OSI participants and summit group to the fullest extent practicable where the director deems this information to be helpful and/or necessary. This advice is crucial for the proper functioning of OSI but it is not binding—there shall be no mechanism, for instance, compelling the program director to adopt measures by majority vote of the members (in order to protect OSI from imbalance that may occur as a result of participant recruitment over time, or participant engagement).

  1. OSI participants. OSI participants shall work together on a variety of projects and discuss matters with each other on the OSI listserv, at annual OSI meetings, and through other channels. They will be informally consulted as warranted (in the judgement of OSI management or the OSI summit group) for feedback on OSI-related matters.
    1. Appointment. OSI management will attempt to identify individuals who should become OSI participants and will reach out to these individuals as needed on an ongoing basis.
    2. Balance. See Article 4: Participant representation.
    3. Rights and authority. All OSI participants have the same right to participate in OSI listserv conversations, make recommendations to the OSI summit group, offer advice and perspective to OSI management, participate in OSI projects and efforts, and other activities not otherwise described herein.
    4. Tenure. OSI participants will opt-in annually to reaffirm their commitment to participate in OSI.
  2. OSI summit group. A committee of OSI participants known as the OSI summit group will be empowered to revise (as needed) the proposals developed by conference workgroups and other OSI participants and groups, and to prepare agreements and action plans built on these proposals after first consulting with relevant workgroups, participant groups, and the full OSI group. The summit group will also be empowered to recommend changes to the OSI governance guidelines or other OSI materials.
    1. Details on how the summit group shall operate and be elected will be added to this document as an amendment by the summit group itself.
    2. The first summit group will be appointed by the OSI director. Members of this first group will serve until an election process is determined for future OSI summit groups.

Article 4: Participant representation

It is vital that the scholarly publishing stakeholder community works together to build OSI, and views this effort as a collective investment—of time, money, intellect, effort, and goodwill—in order to ensure that OSI develops in a sustainable manner, and is both representative of and responsive to this community. To this end, including a broad array of perspectives in OSI is important. OSI will strive to ensure that listserv membership, annual meeting attendance, and summit group composition reflect this variety in rough proportion to the goals and quotas defined annually by the OSI summit group and reviewed by OSI participants (noting that group definitions and numbers are going to be continually refined over time as OSI’s outreach and understanding grows).

Article 5: Sponsors, partners & hosts

OSI sponsors, partners and hosts (as defined below) receive no special privileges or consideration in terms of agenda items or favorable decisions—only increased visibility from sponsorship acknowledgements. Sponsorship and funding decisions that may be problematic will be referred to the OSI summit group for advice.

  • 5.1 Sponsors and funders. OSI may be supported by sponsors and funders over time, including individuals, universities, companies and government organizations.
  • 5.2 Partners. Some OSI sponsors and funders will be deemed “partners” on the basis of their financial support or project involvement at the discretion of OSI management.
  • 5.3 Hosts. Hosts will most often be universities. Hosting OSI meetings gives institutions a unique opportunity to showcase work and involve individuals (in the case of universities, these might be administrators, researchers, faculty, staff and students) beyond what would be possible as a meeting participant. Hosts may also be granted certain privileges with regard to participating in planning meetings, and may also be considered partners in some cases.

Article 6: Legal commitments

There are no legal commitments involved in participating in OSI as an individual participant, institution, summit group member, supporter, or any other capacity, except for the OSI program director, who is legally bound to this effort through the contracts that are signed for its funding and for program-related needs and activities.

Article 7: Durability

As long as the Science Communication Institute is entrusted with this effort, SCI will ensure the long-term durability of OSI and its products and assets at a minimum through calendar year 2025, barring any other management arrangements that OSI participants choose through the mechanism described herein.

Article 8: Transparency

All records related to OSI (apart from private communications and the unique reports filed to sponsors so requesting) will be available for public review from SCI until 2026. If another entity assumes responsibility for OSI (or if OSI becomes its own entity), this responsibility for transparency will be required to endure.