In the shift beyond content licensing and towards supporting researcher workflow, Elsevier has few competitors. A key question is whether Digital Science and SpringerNature should be understood strategically as one company, or two. Who owns Digital Science?
The merger of Macmillan and Springer holds many lessons and some interesting twists. More than anything, it indicates a future in which scale continues to confer advantages.
Springer’s acquisition of Papers shifts the publisher into the workflow, and provides a unique opportunity to become a unifying resource.