Optimal Pricing and Quality of Academic Journals and the Ambiguous Welfare Effects of Forced Open Access: A Two-Sided Model

34 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2012

See all articles by Frank Mueller-Langer

Frank Mueller-Langer

University of the Bundeswehr Munich; Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition; European Commission, Joint Research Center

Richard Watt

University of Canterbury - Economics and Finance; The Society for Economic Research on Copyright Issues (SERCI)

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Date Written: April 25, 2012

Abstract

We analyze optimal pricing and quality of a monopolistic journal and the optimality of open access in a two-sided model. The predominant aspect of the model that determines the quality levels at which open access is optimal is the nature of the relationship between readers and authors in a journal. In contrast to previous literature, we firstly show that there exist scenarios in which open access is a feature of high-quality journals. Second, we find that removal of copyright (and thus forced open access) decreases journal profits but has ambiguous social welfare effects.

Keywords: academic journal, two-sided market, open access, welfare effects, copyright

JEL Classification: L11, L82, O34

Suggested Citation

Mueller-Langer, Frank and Watt, Richard, Optimal Pricing and Quality of Academic Journals and the Ambiguous Welfare Effects of Forced Open Access: A Two-Sided Model (April 25, 2012). TILEC Discussion Paper No. 2012-019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2045956 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2045956

Frank Mueller-Langer (Contact Author)

University of the Bundeswehr Munich ( email )

Munich
Germany

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition ( email )

Munich
Germany

European Commission, Joint Research Center

Seville
Spain

Richard Watt

University of Canterbury - Economics and Finance ( email )

Private Bag 4800
Christchurch
New Zealand

The Society for Economic Research on Copyright Issues (SERCI) ( email )

Apartado de correos 1100
Palma de Mallorca, 08080
Spain

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