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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 (the same person has filled both roles since 2014). OSI’s steering committee guided this group in its early years; this group was the senior executive team between early 2015 and around 2019. OSI’s summit group served as the strategic management body in 2018-19, comprised of representatives from most of OSI’s stakeholder groups, as well as OSI’s steering committee. Since about 2020, OSI activities have been mostly led by SCI in close consultation with select OSI members (particularly with regard to writing reports). 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 (SCI Executive Director)
  • 2018-19 Summit Group: See table below
  • 2015-20 Steering Group (leadership subset of summit group): See table below
  • 2020-25 guidance: See involvement profiles below
  • OSI participants: See participants list in this website

2018 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



OSI Governance Guidlines

Proposed on 11/2/16 for adoption by OSI members
Revised on 11/16/16 and 4/5/17 based on feedback from OSI members
Final version presented to OSI2017 delegates on 4/18/17
Revised (simplified) version emailed to OSI2018 planning group on 6/30/17
New revised version incorporates recommendations from planning group, 7/5/17
New revised 2, incorporates more simplifications and recommendations, 7/21/17
New revised 3 incorporates edits from Mel DeSart, 8/22/17
Revised on 1/9/19 based on summit group feedback from 11/18 meeting


The principles and practices of scholarly communication are critical to the advancement of research and 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
  • OSI: The Open Scholarship Initiative
  • OSI listserv: The main conversation tool for OSI. Individuals on this list have been directly added, with consent, by OSI management. These individuals are carefully selected for diversity (including geographic, stakeholder group, institution size, gender, and seniority). They are free to leave the list (and OSI) at any time
  • OSI management: The OSI program director, staff, and other decision-making leadership of OSI (such as the summit group chair)
  • OSI participants: Individuals who belong to the OSI listserv and are active in OSI conversations and/or activities
  • OSI alumni and observers: Individuals who have voluntarily remained on the OSI listserv but may not be currently active in OSI. These individuals were active at one point (as conference attendees and/or listserv participants), but may now mostly follow the list and occasionally submit feedback through the list or directly to OSI management.
  • 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, 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 the involvement of 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.

3.1. Stewardship. Until or unless an alternative arrangement is deemed desirable by OSI participants, the stewardship responsibility for this effort rests with SCI. The SCI executive director assigns the program director for OSI, subject to such considerations that SCI may deem necessary appropriate (such as consultation with OSI members and the SCI board; note as well that these two roles might be filled by the same person).

  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 (see article 4.2 below) 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.
  2. Change in stewardship. Details on how stewardship for OSI can change may be added to this document at a future date.

3.2. Consultation. On all matters related to the content and substance of OSI, the OSI program director works together with OSI participants and the OSI summit group to produce programs, products, position papers and more, which attempt to accurately reflect the sense of the OSI community. The OSI program director solicits and considers advice and feedback provided by OSI participants and the OSI 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.

  1. OSI participants. OSI participants work together on a variety of scholarly communication projects and discuss matters with each other on the OSI listserv, at annual OSI meetings, and through other channels. They are continuously consulted for feedback on scholarly communication issues and OSI-related matters.
    1. It is vital that the scholarly communication stakeholder community works together to build OSI, and views OSI 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 therefore strives to ensure that it’s participant recruitment efforts (including listserv membership, annual meeting delegates, and summit group members) reflect this variety. Practical considerations will result in some deviations from the ideal.
    2. OSI participants are all individuals who have been invited by the OSI program director to attend an OSI conference or to join the OSI listserv.  Participants can recommend individuals to be invited by submitting names to the program director. Interested individuals can also request an invitation by contacting the program director.  
    3. Number: There is no limit on the number of participants allowed in OSI.
    4. Rights and authority. All OSI participants have the same right to be heard in OSI listserv conversations, and to 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.
    5. Tenure. OSI participants are assumed to be interested in continuing their affiliation with OSI until they remove themselves from the OSI listserv or request to be removed. Because some individuals may not be active participants, however, and may not respond to surveys but are still interested in maintaining contact with the group, we will sometimes refer to the full list as “OSI participants, alumni and observers.”
    6. Engagement: Most engagement between OSI participants takes place through the OSI listserv. OSI conferences are also important. Other types of engagement—between all participants or only subsets of participants—are also encouraged and supported (including but not limited to conference panels, the OSI summit group, and issue and editorial groups).
  2. OSI summit group. A committee of OSI participants known as the OSI summit group exists to discuss and recommend priorities and projects which can advance the overall goals of OSI.
    1. The summit group is a body of OSI participants who volunteer—some at the request of the program director—to serve in an advisory capacity to OSI.
    2. The number of participants in this group may vary from year to year at the discretion of the program director.
    3. The summit group meets on a regular basis, with the meeting frequency determined by the program director (depending on the type of oversight and input needed).
    4. Discussions adhere to Chatham House Rules.
    5. Summit group members are not assumed to be speaking on behalf of the organizations they work for.
    6. Care is taken to ensure that the summit group is a diverse body.
    7. The summit group may decide to elect a chair. The chair works with the program director to set the agenda for meetings, and also works in close consultation with the program director to develop OSI’s strategic plans. Other responsibilities may also be requested of the chair such as running summit meetings.  
    8. Summit group decisions are reached by consensus, as determined by the program director.  
  3. Other groups. Other groups also exist in OSI, including but not limited to editorial oversight committees, conference planning committees, and issue discussion groups. These groups can each develop their own governance rules.
  4. Other consultation. As deemed valuable, the program director may also create other kinds of consultation mechanisms not specifically mentioned here.

Article 4: Funding and support

OSI may elect to receive financial and in-kind support from a variety of entities, including but not limited to governments, foundations and individuals. These entities receive no special privileges or consideration in return for their support—only increased visibility as deemed reasonable by OSI (such as including their name and/or logo on the program cover and/or mentioning their name in press releases), except as otherwise approved by the OSI summit group. Funding and support decisions that may be problematic are referred to the OSI summit group for advice. OSI may define the funding and support it receives in a variety of ways, such as gifts, grants or sponsorships. At the time of this document’s consideration, these three definitions are sponsors, partners and hosts.

4.1 Sponsors. Entities that provide financial support to OSI.

4.2 Partners. Entities involved in helping shape the program or focus of OSI, such as UNESCO. Partners are also listed as sponsors in order to avoid disclosure confusion (since some disclosure materials may only require a complete list of sponsors).

4.3 Hosts. Hosts are the universities and institutions that host OSI meetings. Hosting OSI meetings gives institutions and universities a unique opportunity to showcase their work and involve individuals (in the case of universities, these might be administrators, researchers, faculty, staff and students). Hosts may also be granted certain privileges with regard to participating in planning meetings, in which case they may also be considered partners. Hosts are also listed as sponsors due to their in-kind support, and for the disclosure clarity described in section 4.2.

Article 5: 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 6: 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 members choose through the mechanism described herein.

Article 7: 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.