The information on this page applies to journal articles. Funding for books acknowledging UKRI is also available in certain circumstances. For details, see UKRI – monographs, book chapters, and edited collections.

Before applying for funding, check whether the open access fee can be fully covered or discounted via one of our Publisher agreements and discounts.

Apply for funding to pay open access fees / article processing charges (APCs)

Where your research funder permits, you should charge APC payments to active research awards. Your funder may provide funding for APCs in their award but if not you can apply to one of the following funds. All Imperial research staff and students can apply.

This video shows you how to apply for APC funding as part of the process of depositing your paper in Spiral via Symplectic Find out more here about Symplectic and Spiral.

How to apply for APC funding

This video shows you how to apply for APC funding as part of the process of depositing your paper in Spiral via Symplectic.

Find out more here about the relationship between Symplectic and Spiral.


The Research Councils UK (RCUK) open access fund is available to researchers with funding from any of the Research Councils:

  • Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
  • Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
  • Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
  • Innovate UK (IUK)
  • Medical Research Council (MRC)
  • Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
  • Research England (RE)
  • Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).

Conditions apply, see Research funders' open access policies for details.

Wellcome Trust, Cancer Research UK and British Heart Foundation

We have received block grants from the Wellcome Trust, Cancer Research UK and the British Heart Foundation, so authors with funding from those charities can apply for funding via Symplectic (conditions apply, see Research funders’ open access policies for details). Authors with funding from Versus Arthritis, Blood Cancer UK, or Parkinson’s UK should contact their funder for further information. 

Imperial Open Access Fund

The Imperial Open Access Fund (Imperial Fund) is available to authors who do not have eligible open access funding in their research award or whose work is not externally funded.

The Imperial Fund will only pay for original research articles in journals listed on the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). The Open Access team can consider other publication types – but please check with us first before submitting your paper to a journal.

DOAJ lists high quality, open access, peer-reviewed journals – and inclusion has strict criteria. Some journal websites state that they are listed in DOAJ when they are not or misuse the DOAJ logo. You should always check the DOAJ website that a journal is indexed. Please see our FAQ What is open access? for further advice.


You can only apply for funds on acceptance of your manuscript or conference proceedings by the publisher, not before. To find out if you are eligible for APC costs to be covered by one of the funds held in the Library please contact the open access team.

To make an application for APC funding, deposit your accepted manuscript in Symplectic and select "yes" when prompted.

If there is already an entry in Symplectic for your accepted paper either add a new manual record, or edit the existing one, to submit a new APC funding application. The option to add or edit a manual record is in the “data sources” section of the Symplectic record.

If your application is approved, you will receive an email within 2 to 5 days which will include further instructions and a purchase order (PO) number to facilitate payment.

The open access funds are only for open access fees - other charges such as colour, page and submission fees must be funded from elsewhere. You may be required to request separate invoices.

 Please wait for your application to be approved before requesting an invoice.