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Open Access Policies

Please review the SEPM Open Access Policies found below: 

SEPM Open Access Policy
Open Access FAQs
Open Science Policy
Statement of Ethics in Research and Publication

SEPM Open Access Policy

The SEPM Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM) will respond positively to the new RCUK and OSTP policies on public access to research results and will implement new policies for articles received on or after August 8, 2013. These policies will apply to all authors, and the Society will retain its commitment to publishing only high-quality peer-reviewed research outputs.

The Society’s journals and online book publications will take a hybrid approach to publication, enabling a combination of Gold (author pays) Open Access, Green (repository) Open Access and access-controlled (subscription) articles. SEPM will also work with co-publishers to encourage the adoption of compatible policies.

Gold Open Access:

  1. For an article to be published on a Gold Open Access basis, the payment of an Article Processing Charge (APC) is required on acceptance of the article for publication. Payment must be received prior to online publication. The APC charged for Gold OA will be $2,700 for articles submitted in or after 2013.
  2. APC charges will be reviewed on a regular basis and may be waived for (e.g.) commissioned journal articles. A discount of $200 will be available for members of the Society, and discounts may be offered to authors from developing countries. The eligibility for a discount is restricted to the first author’s status.
  3. Gold OA articles will be published under the terms of the CC-BY 4.0 license. These terms include the readers freedom to Share — to copy, distribute and transmit the work; to Remix — to adapt the work; and to make commercial use of the work as long as the source of the work is attributed in the manner specified by the licensor (SEPM) (but not in any way that suggests that the authors or publishers endorse the use of the work). SEPM requires attribution to include a full reference, including author(s), date and publication.

Green Open Access:

  1. All articles may be published under these terms of Green Open Access.
  2. Authors may post a copy of the accepted version (i.e., post-peer review but pre-copy-edited and unformatted version) of their article, accompanied by a link to the relevant abstract at in their institutional repository or a subject-based repository required by their funder. There is no embargo period for posting accepted versions of manuscripts.  Authors may send a final published PDF version of their article to individuals. Under no circumstances may the publisher’s final version (e.g., final version of the online PDF) be posted to any online repository. All regular copyrights will apply.

Subscription Pricing:

  1. Subscriptions may be charged for SEPM titles for as long as they continue to contain articles for which no APC has been paid. For each journal/series a base-line subscription will be calculated annually for the following calendar year. This price will reflect the price of the journal assuming no Gold Open Access content.
  2. Each year an Open Access Discount will be provided to non-member renewing subscribers reflecting the level of APCs received from the previous year. The level of this Discount will fluctuate by year, but as the volume of Gold Open Access content grows, the level of discount should increase and the subscription price should decrease in real terms. The Open Access Discount will be explicitly stated on all price lists and subscription invoices.

Compliance with funder and license requirements:

  1. In all cases it is the author’s responsibility to ensure that their chosen route to publication is compliant with any requirements or obligation placed upon them by their funder or employer. SEPM takes no responsibility for advising authors on compliance.
  2. Authors wishing to have their article published via Gold Open Access have responsibility for ensuring that all components of their work (for example, data, figures or tables included in the final version) are compatible with the requirements of the CC-BY 4.0 license (CC BY 4.0 Deed | Attribution 4.0 International | Creative Commons ). SEPM cannot advise on such issues, nor undertake negotiations with rights holders on an author’s behalf.

Last updated 2019

SEPM Open Access FAQ

SEPM Society for Sedimentary Geology’s Open Access policy was established by the SEPM Council in August 2013. Authors submitting manuscripts for publication in online journals and books have the option to make their published article fully Open Access (commonly called ‘Gold Open Access’) on payment of a fee (Article Processing Fee or APC).

Open Access articles are published online in the usual way, but are made freely available to any user and have different terms and conditions of use than other articles at SEPM Online (

How can I tell if an article is Open Access?

Open Access articles have an Open Access logo by the article in the online table of contents and on the first page of the article. Such articles are subject to the Creative Commons CC-BY license. (CC BY 4.0 Deed | Attribution 4.0 International | Creative Commons )

SEPM Online also includes free access to some articles without the Open Access logo (for example, the introductory chapters of books or some older publications). Those articles can be accessed by all, but the regular copyright terms and conditions of use apply (SEPM Publications Permissions )

What can I do with an Open Access article?

SEPM Open Access articles are published under the Creative Commons CC-BY License. This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon the work, even commercially, as long as they credit the author for the original creation and do not put restrictions on the OA content. This license allows maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.

Authors are still bound by the Society’s code of publishing ethics. The Creative Commons license is does not give anyone permission to create duplicate publications based on OA content.

Is the Society now charging twice for Open Access articles?

There is some concern that publishers will ‘double-dip’ by charging both authors and readers via access subscriptions. However, that will not be the case for the Society. However, since for now, SEPM publications will likely contain both Gold OA content and non-OA content (hybrid publications) and since the amount of content in any given year is not possible to calculate before subscriptions are priced out, a discount will be given on renewals for any SEPM publication subscription for the next year. This will include a discount proportional to the amount of OA content included in that publication the previous 12 months.

How much does it cost?

For 2013 and until it may be changed, the charge for Gold Open Access Article Processing Charge is set at $2700. A discount is available to SEPM Members (as first authors) publishing in SEPM publications of $200. No other discounts are available at this time.

Authors who select this option will need to complete a payment authorization form after their article is accepted and they will be sent an invoice shortly after SEPM starts preparing their article for publication. An author’s intention to pay the open access fee will have no effect on the peer review process and acceptability of a manuscript.

What content is eligible?

Any content that is to be published online at SEPM Online will be eligible. If the Society publishes a book that is available in print or CD only, then Open Access publishing will not be available for those titles.

How do I select this option?

There will be a section in the online submission form allowing authors to choose Open Access. Until that option is made part of the automated online submission, please contact the journal or book managing editors (JSR-Melissa LesterPALAIOS – Kathleen Huber; Special Publications – Michele Tomlinson)

Will paying for Open Access make any difference to the review process or publication time?

No. All manuscripts will go through the usual peer-review and production process in the same way as other articles. Associated editors and reviewers will not know if you will be publishing it as OA. No preferential treatment will be offered, other than the free access and use of the published article.

Will the SEPM Open Access policy comply with funding requirements?

As the Society uses the most liberal of the Creative Commons licenses, its Open Access policy should satisfy most research-funding bodies who require research that they fund to be Open Access. But it is up to the author to determine what the funding agency requires and if SEPM OA fulfills the requirements.

If you are required to make your research Open Access, but do not have funds, the Society’s will allow you to post your final accepted manuscript online, which complies with many funding agencies ‘Green Open Access’ criteria, but it will not be the final formatted and published version nor will it be “free” on the SEPM journal web pages.

Can I use material from elsewhere in my Open Access article?

Authors should check that any material that was not created by them, but that they use in their article, is used with full permission of the copyright holder or licensee to publish under the CC-BY license. Some picture libraries, commercial publishers and other copyright holders have permission policies against OA republication, especially with commercial reuse permitted. You may not use such content in an SEPM Open Access article. All material in the article must be compliant with the CC-BY license. This is an author’s responsibility and SEPM will not take any responsibility in this area.

Last updated 2013. 

Open Science Policy

Data access and sharing

SEPM is committed to promoting best practice in research, including facilitating access to research data that underpin articles published in JSR, PALAIOS, and SEPM Special Publications. Assessment of results presented in an SEPM article requires all data necessary to understand, evaluate, replicate, and build upon the reported research to be made available and accessible, subject to any legal, ethical, and commercial constraints on data sharing. Many funding bodies and institutions also now require that such research data must be preserved for long-term storage and shared. Such material may include:

  • data used to generate, or be displayed in, figures, graphs, videos, animations, or tables in an article;
  • new protocols or methods used to generate the data in an article;
  • new code or computer software used to generate results or analyses reported in an article;
  • derived data products reported or described in an article.

It is best practice for SEPM articles to include an explicit statement in their “Acknowledgments” section that clarifies how users can access the data from that paper (e.g., via supplements or repositories) and states any restrictions on access. This data access statement could include a weblink (e.g., a DOI or other persistent identifier) from which the data can be accessed. In the case that access to the data is not available at all, it is recommended that authors give clear and justified reasons (e.g., “the data underlying this article are not available by agreement with our partners, to protect their commercial confidentiality”).

SEPM encourages authors to identify and archive their data in approved data centers. If there is no relevant public repository available, and the data are such that they cannot easily be included in a supplement, then authors are expected to curate their data for at least 5 years after publication and to provide a transparent process to make the data available to anyone upon request.

Open Access publishing

SEPM’s Open Access policy has been effective since August 2013 and is outlined above. Authors submitting papers for publication in JSR, PALAIOS, and SEPM Special Publications have the option to make their published article fully Open Access (i.e., Gold Open Access) on payment of the stipulated fee, with a discount for SEPM members. Authors can also satisfy Green Open Access requirements by posting a copy of the accepted version of their article (i.e. post-peer review but not the copy-edited or publication-formatted version) in an institutional or a subject-based repository, where it is available with no embargo period once the article has been officially published online. Our policy is consistent with the requirement of many funders that publicly-funded research should be freely accessible in the public domain, and we encourage SEPM authors to make their research available through the Open Access options outlined above.


Preprints have been used extensively in the physical sciences for over two decades as a community-policed means of sharing research results and data. SEPM endorses the use of preprints via repositories such as arXiv ( and EarthArXiv ( which we consider to exist symbiotically with selective journals; most research posted as a preprint ultimately undergoes formal peer review and journal publication, with the published, peer-reviewed article constituting the quality-assured version of record. We encourage prospective SEPM authors to post their work as a preprint, as a precursor to submitting it to JSR, PALAIOS, and SEPM Special Publications.

Statement of Ethics in Research and Publication

The following principles of ethical and professional conduct apply to all persons who submit manuscripts or book proposals for review or publication by SEPM and to those persons who review or edit manuscripts for publications related to SEPM. General policy rules include:

  1. Author Inclusion and Exclusion
  2. Data and Copyright Issues
  3. Editor and Reviewer Roles
  4. Research Misconduct – Recognition and Guidelines for Action

Author Inclusion and Exclusion

General Rule: Recognition of authorship should indicate a substantive contribution to the intellectual content of the publication, and all substantive contributors should have the option of being listed as coauthors. Author order in the byline is a collective decision of the authors or study group. The authors should resolve disagreements about author order before the article is submitted for publication.

1. Individuals will claim authorship of a paper only if they have made a substantive contribution. Authorship may legitimately be claimed if persons:

  • a. Conceived the ideas or experimental design, and or;
  • b. Participated actively in execution of the study, and or;
  • c. Analyzed and interpreted the data, and or
  • d. Wrote the manuscript.

2. Authors will not add or delete authors from a manuscript submitted for publication without consent of those authors. This consent must be forwarded to the publication editors.

3. All authors who have contributed intellectual content must have read and agreed to the content of the submitted manuscript or book proposal, as well as any subsequent versions. Authors may not include as coauthor(s) on publications any individual who has not read and agreed to the content of the all versions of the manuscript up to and including the final version.

Data and Copyright Issues

General Rule: SEPM does not publish articles as original material if the underlying ideas have beenpreviously published. The readers, reviewers, and editors of SEPM publications expect that manuscripts or book proposals submitted for publication:

  1. Are the work of the author(s)
  2. Represent original work
  3. Have not been plagiarized - i.e., taken from another source or author without explicit acknowledgement or permission - including self-plagiarism

4. Authors will not submit for publication any manuscript or book proposal containing data they are not authorized to use.

SEPM assumes the principal investigator(s) of a research project retain the right to control use of resulting unpublished data unless otherwise specified by contract or explicit agreement. A copy of all such agreements must be forwarded to the editors upon submission of the manuscript. Submission of a manuscript by a corporate employee will be presumed to indicate that the employee's company has consented to release of such material for external publication by the company.

5. Authors will not present research data, methods, results, or interpretation as new if they have been published or submitted elsewhere.

The corresponding author must include in the cover letter a statement to the SEPM editor about all submissions and previous materials that might be considered to be redundant or duplicate publication of similar work. This statement will indicate if the manuscript includes materials on which the authors have previously published, have submitted a related report to another publication, or have distributed the materials on the Internet. Copies of the related material should be submitted to the relevant SEPM editor to assist with the editorial decision of the manuscript, accompanied by a cover letter that explains in detail how the submitted manuscript overlaps with and differs from other submitted or published work––including Internet resources.

6. Authors will not submit a manuscript or book proposal for publication while a comparable manuscript or proposal is under review for possible publication elsewhere.

It is the responsibility of the authors to inform the publication editors of any other submitted manuscripts or book proposals that may compromise this rule.

7. When using ideas or results of other persons in manuscripts submitted for publication, authors will give full attribution of sources. If the ideas or results have not been published, they may not be used without permission of the original researcher. Illustrations or tables from other publications or manuscripts may be used only with permission of the copyright owner.

Authors frequently wish to reuse previously published images and other copyrighted material. It is each author' s responsibility to follow journal or publisher guidelines to reuse any copyrighted material and provide proper attribution. This aspect includes the author's own work even if the copyright was transferred to a publisher or journal. Authors should contact the journal or publisher of the source material or consult the permissions information page that can be found on many of their web sites. Permission should be granted in writing and the authors should retain this documentation. The SEPM editor should receive a copy of this notification with the initial submission.

8. Authors submitting manuscripts for publication will promptly report to editors any errors in research results or interpretations discovered after submission or publication.

Editor and Reviewer Roles

General Rule: Progress in science relies heavily on effective communication of trusted information. Review by objective, impartial, and competent reviewers represents the fundamental basis for maintaining this trust. As such, editors and reviewers play important roles in SEPM’s mission and have special responsibilities.

9. Editors or reviewers will treat manuscripts under review as confidential, recognizing them as the intellectual property of the author(s).

10. Scientists will not serve as editors or reviewers of a manuscript if present or past connections with he author or the author’s institution may prevent objective evaluation of the work.

11. Scientists will not purposely delay publication of another person’s manuscript to gain advantage over that person.

Research Misconduct - Recognition and Guidelines for Action

As a society responsible for communication of the most important science in sedimentary geology, SEPM is dedicated to integrity in its research products and publications. SEPM considers research misconduct a serious offense; such offenses include data fabrication, data falsification, inappropriate image manipulation, or plagiarism.

Detailed discussion of issues of misconduct is well beyond the scope of this statement. In general, however, SEPM follows the best practices of Committee on Publication Ethics. These practices for specific cases of research and publication misconduct are available at:

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