Surf any news website or pick up any newspaper and it is likely you won’t have to read far before the words open access appear.

That has never been more true than this month as new open access policies from RCUK and the Wellcome Trust come into effect.

This Open Access Special Report has been developed to run through some of those changes and update you on open access developments at Elsevier.

In Complying with open access policies and mandates you can discover more about the OA options we offer and how we are engaging with institutions and funding bodies to ensure compliance with recent regulations.

Understanding the fine print: what changes when publishing open access provides a detailed look at the licenses governing author and reader rights in an open access world. We outline the Creative Commons licenses we have on offer and turn our thoughts to the future.

In How authors can publish open access in your journal we discuss our Open Access Articles program, currently available in 1,500 of our journals. This initiative allows authors to choose the open access path when publishing in our subscription journals.

And last but not least, in What is the green route? we look at what Green Open Access means, not only for the author but for your journal and the general public.

This edition also marks the launch of a new development for Editors’ Update – a Special Report.  This format allows us to streamline our usual content and focus on a particular topic in the news. These periodic Special Reports will be published in addition to our regular quarterly editions. If there is a topic you would like us to highlight, please do let us know by emailing us at editorsupdate2@elsevier.com.

As always, your thoughts on any of the articles in this edition are very welcome and we provide an opportunity to post your comments at the end of each piece.

Issue 39 of Editors’ Update is scheduled for a June release so, until then, thanks very much for reading and I hope to hear from you soon.