Springer Science+Business Media or Springer is a global publishing company that publishes books, e-books and peer-reviewed journals in science, technical and medical (STM) publishing. Springer also hosts a number of scientific databases, including SpringerLink, Springer Protocols, and SpringerImages. Book publications include major reference works, textbooks, monographs and book series; more than 168,000 titles are available as e-books in 24 subject collections. Springer has major offices in Berlin, Heidelberg, Dordrecht, and New York City.
Julius Springer founded Springer-Verlag in Berlin in 1842 and his son Ferdinand Springer grew it from a small firm of 4 employees into Germany's second largest academic publisher with 65 staff in just 30 years. In 1964, Springer expanded its business internationally, opening an office in New York. Offices in Tokyo, Paris, Milan, Hong Kong, and Delhi soon followed.
The academic publishing company BertelsmannSpringer was formed after Bertelsmann bought a majority stake in Springer-Verlag in 1999. The British investment groups Cinven and Candover bought BertelsmannSpringer from Bertelsmann in 2003. They merged the company in 2004 with the Dutch publisher Kluwer Academic Publishers which they bought from Wolters Kluwer in 2002, to form Springer Science+Business Media.
In 2011, Springer acquired Pharma Marketing and Publishing Services from Wolters Kluwer.
In 2013, the London-based private equity firm BC Partners acquired a majority stake in Springer from EQT and GIC for $4.4 billion.
In 2014, it was revealed that Springer had published 16 fake papers in its journals that had been computer-generated using SCIgen. Springer subsequently removed all the papers from these journals. IEEE had also done the same thing by removing more than 100 fake papers from its conference proceedings.
In 2015, Springer retracted 64 of the papers it had published after it was found that they had gone through a fraudulent peer review process.
Springer provides its electronic book and journal content on its SpringerLink site, which launched in 1996.
SpringerProtocols is home to a collection of protocols, recipes which provide step-by-step instructions for conducting experiments in research labs.
SpringerImages was launched in 2008 and offers a collection of currently 1.8 million images spanning science, technology, and medicine.
SpringerMaterials was launched in 2009 and is a platform for accessing the Landolt-Börnstein database of research and information on materials and their properties.
AuthorMapper is a free online tool for visualizing scientific research that enables document discovery based on author locations and geographic maps. The tool helps users explore patterns in scientific research, identify literature trends, discover collaborative relationships, and locate experts in several scientific/medical fields.
For some of its journals, Springer does not require its authors to transfer their copyrights, and allows them to decide whether their articles are published under an open-access license or in the traditional restricted license model. While open-access publishing typically requires the author to pay a fee for copyright retention, this fee is sometimes covered by a third party. For example, a national institution in Poland allows authors to publish in open-access journals without incurring any personal cost - but using public funds. Springer is a member of the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association.