The author investigates the possible consequences of Open Access for learned societies with their own journal like the Dutch Flemish association for gender history. For learned societies, the advantage of Open Access is that contributions in their journals become easily accessible for researchers. But it remains uncertain whether small associations are able to meet the technical requirements for Open Access. More important is the financial aspect. When the content of the journals of learned societies has to be online and freely accessible, members may no longer wish to support these associations financially. When the associations start losing members, they are affected financially and may no longer have the means to publish their journals. In this situation, they may lose more members and may in the end even be threatened in their existence. This has other consequences as well, because learned societies and their journals contribute to the diversity and vitality of the humanities and allow a wide audience to get acquainted with results from academic research.
- Open Access