Many funding organisations require that the outputs of the research they fund be made Open Access. These include:
Most funder requirements apply even if the research was only partially funded by that organisation. If your output acknowledges support from more than one funder, you must ensure that all requirements are met.
See OA and the next REF for guidance on HEFEC's requirements for Open Access.
The majority of research funders have some form of publications policy and it is important that you read and understand these as soon as possible.
In some cases publication costs should be written into grant applications in which case you will need to know the requirements before applying to the funder.
The easiest way to get information about a funder’s policy is through the SHERPA/JULIET database.
It is recommended that you also check your funder’s website or contact them for further details.
Many funders specify that you must deposit research in either an institutional or subject archive.
It is important for both the publisher and the funder that you deposit the correct version of a research paper.
Funders will usually state a maximum acceptable embargo period. This is the period of time between publication of the paper and it being made available through an open access repository. Publishers will usually specify a minimum acceptable embargo period. It is important to ensure that the funder and journal policies correspond before submitting your paper.
Some funders are satisfied as long as your paper has been made available through an established open access repository. Some funders will specify a particular repository in which authors must deposit a copy of their paper. It is not uncommon, for example, for funders in health-related disciplines to insist that a paper is deposited in PubMed Central or Europe PubMed Central.
It’s always worth checking whether funders have any specific requirements to do with deposit.
Most funders will want you to publish. Some organisations may by funding your research for commercial or other reasons that mean they do not want you to publish your findings. This should have been established from the very beginning of a grant.
The majority of funders are happy for you to publish where you would like as long as the journal allows you to meet their requirements. Some funders will specify that you must publish research in a journal that accepts gold open access or even one that is only gold open access. A small number of funders may require you to publish within specified journals.
Any other information regarding the funder’s publishing requirements.
Any other information about the funder’s open access or other publishing requirements including qualification of policies listed above.
Research Councils UK:
- Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
- Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
- Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
- Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC)
- Medical Research Council (MRC)
- Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
- Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
Research Councils UK, the umbrella organisation for the seven UK Research Councils, announced a new Open Access policy in July 2012 which was revised in February 2013.
The RCUK policy came into force from 1 April 2013 and affects anyone whose research is funded in whole or in part by any of the UK Research Councils.
RCUK have described their policy as “a journey, not an event” and expect the policy to evolve and compliance to improve over a transitional period of five years. It is acknowledged that it will take time for the policy to be fully implemented.
Researchers are expected to publish any peer reviewed research papers which acknowledge Research Council funding in journals that comply with RCUK Policy.
There are two ways in which this can be achieved:
A journal will provide unrestricted access to the final published version of a paper on its own website. The paper must be made available under a Creative Commons CC-BY licence. This will usually involve the payment of an article processing charge (APC) to the publisher.
The journal allows the “final Accepted Manuscript” (i.e. the post-print) to be deposited in a repository and made available as Open Access within an acceptable time after publication (an embargo period). For AHRC and ESRC funded research the maximum accepted embargo period is 12 months; for all other Research Councils the maximum acceptable embargo period is 6 months.
If an author attempts to make a paper Open Access under method 1 (the gold route) but finds that funds are not available then RCUK have indicated that they are willing to accept depositing of a manuscript in a repository with a longer embargo period. This will be a maximum 24 months for AHRC and ESRC and a maximum of 12 months for all other Research Councils.
Research Councils UK (RCUK) have expressed a preference for the gold route to Open Access; however their policy leaves the choice of which route to take with the author or research organisation. If an author wishes to go the green route to Open Access it is important that the journal of choice allows the article to be made Open Access through a repository within an acceptable embargo period.
1. Will your chosen journal allow you to deposit the accepted manuscript in a repository and make it Open Access within 6 months (or 12 months for AHRC or ESRC)?
YES - Go green. You can deposit your article to White Rose Research Online (WRRO) and set an embargo period if required.
NO - Next question:
2. Will your chosen journal allow you to deposit the accepted manuscript in a repository and make it Open Access within 12 months (or 24 months for AHRC or ESRC)?
YES – Your first choice should be to try gold. Apply to the York Open Access Fund for payment of APCs and let your publisher know that you want to pay for Open Access. If funds are not available to pay for the APC then you will be informed of this but you can still make your paper Open Access through WRRO once the embargo period has elapsed.
NO – You should try to find a journal that will allow a shorter embargo period. You are still eligible to apply for APC funds from the York Open Access Fund which would allow your paper to be made open access. However, there is no guarantee that funds would be available and you may find yourself unable to comply with RCUK policy. If you find that you are unable to comply with RCUK policy because of journal restrictions please let us know. It is important that we know of any problems that York authors are experiencing so that we can report to RCUK. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RCUK will award block grants to universities to help with payment of article processing charge (APCs) for Open Access publication. At York this award will be managed through the York Open Access Fund. York staff whose work acknowledges RCUK funding are eligible to apply to the York Open Access Fund for payment of APCs. Application to the Fund should be done when a paper is submitted to the publisher. Please be aware that demand is expected to be high and we cannot guarantee that funds will be available.
White Rose Research Online (WRRO) is an Institutional Repository (IR) for the Universities of York, Leeds and Sheffield. Any member of the University of York can deposit their work to WRRO and make it Open Access. If a minimum embargo period is specified by the journal this can be set in WRRO to ensure that there is no breach of copyright.
For academic and research staff, depositing to WRRO should be done via PURE. For all other members of staff and students, papers can be deposited directly to WRRO.
Charity Open Access Fund partners
The Charity Open Access Fund (COAF) is a partnership between six major biomedical research funders in the UK. COAF harmonises the Open Access requirements placed on funded researchers and the process by which Open Access publication is funded.
The six charities which contribute to the Charity Open Access Fund are all part of a larger group of medical research funders who support Europe PubMed Central (Europe PMC) - an Open Access repository for biomedical literature which mirrors the US-Based PubMed Central (PMC).
As well as funding the Europe PMC repository, the group have agreed a core set of expectations for the research they fund.
The preference of the six COAF partner charities is for immediate Open Access under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence. Authors' first choice should be for 'gold' Open Access, and this will usually involve payment of a publication fee.
While following these core principles, each of the funding organisations has its own specific Open Access policy which can be found by following the links below.
The six COAF research funders each contribute a sum of money towards payment of Open Access publication costs and this money is split between UK universities and research institutions. At York, this funding is managed as part of the York OA Fund.
York authors whose work acknowledges support from one of the COAF partner charities should request payment of Open Access publication costs from the York Open Access Fund for all research papers and non-commissioned reports.
The Fund cannot be used to pay Open Access costs for output types other than research papers and con-commissioned reports, nor can it be used to pay publication costs other than Open Access costs (for example, additional page or colour charges).
To be eligible for payment of Open Access costs publishers must make papers available using a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license, and must automatically deposit a copy of the article to PubMed Central.
For more information read the Charity Open Access Fund FAQs for researchers.
To request payment of Open Access publication costs please complete the York OA Fund payment request form as soon as possible after submission of the paper to the publisher. We will contact you about the options available and next steps to take. When we pay Open Access costs we will pay publishers directly.
Open Access forms an important component of the NIHR's Publications Policy. The full OA policy is available at:
Outputs arising from research funded through the Horizon 2020 programmes of the European Commission are required to be made Open Access through either the Gold or Green route.
The Open Access mandate consists of two steps:
1. Beneficiaries must deposit a machine-readable electronic copy of the published version or final peer-reviewed manuscript accepted for publication in a repository. This condition can be met at York by depositing into PURE.
2. After depositing publications and, where possible, underlying data, beneficiaries must ensure open access to the deposited publication via the chosen repository. This can be achieved by following either:
a) Green route - to comply with this route, you will need to check whether your chosen journal offers a compliant embargo period (six months maximum, or twelve months for Social Sciences and Humanities). See Journal policies for more information.
b) Gold route - by paying an APC.
APC costs incurred by beneficiaries during Horizon2020 projects are eligible for reimbursement by the European Commission. APC costs incurred after the end of projects are not.
The FP7 post-grant open access pilot now offers funds to cover APCs for FP7 projects up to two years after they end. A maximum of three publications per FP7 project will be funded. Previously published FP7 publications are not eligible. Open access monographs are eligible.