E-IR has a piece on ‘The Importance of Open Access‘.
It is rightly critical of the ‘author pays’ model, and shows how its own model is dependent on a large team of volunteers. I’ve shared links to E-IR collections in the past, and written one piece for the site. They are now moving to ‘a series of short-form scholarly monographs‘.
An interesting development from the site’s initial aims, and one to watch. Whether the entirely voluntary staffing model is sustainable is one question; the other is whether these books, while undoubtedly great exposure, will be taken seriously by promotion, tenure and research assessment committees. It’s good that authors retain copyright in their work, and can reuse material, but this does raise the issue of whether other publishers, on more traditional models, would accept to publish work where a large part was already available open access.