This statement provides the University of York's commitment to the values, principles and culture of open research. It encourages and supports staff and students across all disciplines to explore and engage with open research practices in their work and study.

What is open research?

The core idea behind open research is that all aspects of the research cycle should be shared and accessible where possible. Research across all of our academic disciplines at York should be open as possible, as closed as necessary.

Open research at York strives to embed values of accessibility, reusability, reproducibility, collaboration and transparency in the research process. It is based in the belief that knowledge produces the greatest benefit when it exists in a commons, and that research produced through public funding should belong to and exist for the benefit of all. These values are especially relevant to the University of York's Strategic Vision as a 'University for Public Good'.

It is widely accepted that open practices allow for greater visibility and wider distribution of research, enabling a wide range of audiences to freely discover, engage with and participate in our research. Open practices unlock access to knowledge at an early stage in the research lifecycle and generate new opportunities for collaboration and participation.

The terms 'open research' and 'open science' are sometimes used interchangeably but are based on the same principles of collaboration and accountability which can be applied widely. Open research is relevant to all researchers, but its applications differ between disciplines.

Our commitment to open research

The University of York is committed to the long-term development of a research culture where open is the default.

We aim to actively create and pursue opportunities to grow and foster a values-driven, pluralistic, multi-faceted approach towards open research, embracing disciplinary differences and supporting our staff and students in the process.  We are also committed to incentivising and celebrating good practice, supporting and developing infrastructure and building communities of practice to help facilitate and promote open research at all levels and across all disciplines, while supporting the variety of ways in which open practices can be implemented. 

We believe that all stages of the research lifecycle can potentially be made open, within the bounds of the terms and conditions associated with research. This ranges from opening up research methodologies and workflows through to sharing open source software, open data and materials, and publishing open access journals and books. Open practice also extends into the teaching domain, for example in the production and dissemination of Open Educational Resources (OERs).

Open research offers opportunities for inclusivity and diversity, integrity, accessibility and attribution in the research process, but these are not always realised. We want to take an active role in monitoring and addressing these issues.

Governance and support

We have created strong governance structures for the advancement of an open research culture at the University of York.

The Open Research Operations Group reports into the Open Research Strategy Group and works with colleagues across the University to foster a community of open research practice and to position ourselves to meet REF and funder requirements in this area.

The Open Research Strategy Group provides the strategic guidance and direction for open research activities at the University of York. It reports to the University Research Committee and makes recommendations to identify and address issues with services, infrastructure and policies, in order to enable and promote an open research culture.