Accessibility statement

Research Publications and Open Access Policy


The University of York is committed to the values, principles and culture of open research, as set out in our Open Research Statement. Open research practice enables a wide range of audiences to freely discover and engage with our excellent research, makes the research process transparent, and creates new opportunities for outputs and methods to be reused, reproduced and credited. It generates an environment for more effective and efficient research, and a culture where open is the default.

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that the published outputs of research conducted at York are made open access wherever possible, in accordance with our commitment to open research. This approach also supports our researchers in meeting the open access requirements of research funders including UKRI, Wellcome Trust and others in cOAlition S, as well as ensuring that requirements for a future Research Excellence Framework can be met.

Traditional, subscription-based publication models require authors to grant publishers an exclusive right to publish their work, or to transfer copyright to the publishers. Reuse of the published work is subsequently controlled by the publishers while authors retain limited rights about when, where, how and with whom their output can be shared. This approach is increasingly divergent from the principles of open research and from the expectations of research funders

This policy aims to enable:

  • the University and its researchers to disseminate their research and scholarship as widely as possible, to achieve the greatest impact and make it available to the widest possible audience;
  • the University and its researchers to comply with funder requirements to make research articles and conference proceedings open access immediately upon publication;
  • researchers to publish their work in a publication venue of their choosing.

This policy recognises that it is not necessary for an author to sign over their copyright or grant an exclusive licence to a publisher in order for their work to be published or disseminated.


  1. This policy applies to all scholarly articles (including original research articles, review articles, and articles published in a conference proceedings) which have been accepted for publication in a journal, conference proceedings or publishing platform, which have been created by employees of the University of York in the course of their employment, where publication is an expectation of their employment. For scholarly articles created by postgraduate researchers in the course of their studies, those authors are strongly encouraged to follow the principles set out in this policy.
  2. The University of York confirms the current practice (stated in Regulation 12: Intellectual Property of the University Ordinances and Regulations) that the University does not assert ownership of copyright in books or articles created by staff or students. In most cases this will mean that authors themselves will initially own the copyright for their manuscripts. 
  3. Upon acceptance of publication each staff member grants the University a non-exclusive, irrevocable, worldwide, sub-licensable licence to make manuscripts of scholarly articles and conference papers publicly available under open access principles as per the terms of a Creative Commons Attribution licence CC BY (or under an alternative licence if requested eg by third party funder). This does not prevent authors from publishing their work in a venue of their choice, but it does grant the University the right to make the accepted manuscript openly available without embargo.
  4. Each staff member will ensure that an electronic copy of the accepted manuscript of each scholarly article is provided to the University. This would usually be done through the established manuscript deposit process.
  5. The University will deposit the provided accepted manuscript in an open access digital repository, with information about the work (metadata) usually available immediately upon deposit. The accepted manuscript itself will be made accessible to the public on the date of first (usually online) publication (or the conference end date for conference proceedings) under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence.
  6. The University recognises that there may be situations outside an author’s control where it is difficult to follow this policy exactly. In this case it will be permissible to voluntarily opt out of the requirement for immediate open access upon publication, or the assignment of a CC BY licence. However, this may cause the research output to be non-compliant with funder terms and conditions or requirements for future Research Excellence Framework submissions. To opt-out, authors should contact the Library’s Open Research team with details of the publication.
  7. Research publications should acknowledge all authors, funding, and the University of York, following best practice and using standard persistent identifiers wherever possible.
  8. The University strongly encourages authors to make other outputs that are not scholarly articles as openly available as possible, as early as possible eg monographs, scholarly editions, text books, book chapters, collections of essays, datasets, software.

Status of this document
Document owner: Library, Archives and Learning Services
Approved by University Research Committee: 24 November 2022
Review cycle: 3 years
Date of next review: 2024