What to look out for

  • What is the policy start date?
  • What publication types (outputs) are included?
  • Do you need to a specific publishing licence?
  • Do you need to deposit in a named repository?
  • Is there an embargo period for deposit in a repository?
  • Will the publisher deposit in a repository for you?

Research funders have different open access policies.

You must publish any research papers arising from your research award in such a way that they fully meet your funder's requirements. The policy will be available on your funder's website and should be highlighted in the start-up documents supplied with your research award.

Funder policies will specify 2 separate sets of requirements - depositing in a repository and paying an open access fee or article processing charge (APC) to your publisher. You need to meet only one of these requirements.

Example: if your research is funded by the Wellcome Trust the journal you want to publish in must either:

  • permit you  to deposit a copy of the accepted version of your article to PubMed Central within 6 months of publication, free of charge

Or

  • in exchange for paying an APC, the publisher must make the published version of your article free to read on their website immediately on publication, using a Creative Commons Attribution licence and deposit a copy of the published article to PubMed Central

Click on the tabs to see the policies and sources of open access funding of major UK funders and the European Commission.

Common funders

OA funds

To help you comply with their open access policy, your research funder may provide funding directly to you for open access fees in their award, or they may provide the College with a central source of funding to which you can apply. The funds available at Imperial are:

  • Research Councils UK (RCUK) open access fund
  • The Charity Open Access Fund (COAF) – for authors with funding from the Wellcome Trust, Arthritis Research UK, Breast Cancer Campaign, British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK and/or Leukaemia and Lymphona Research
  • Imperial Open Access Fund -  for authors who do not have eligible open access funding in their research award or whose work is not externally funded. Please note: it will pay for the open access publication costs for articles in fully open access journals only.

To find out if your chosen journal is compliant with the RCUK and COAF open access policies, use the SHERPA Funders & Authors Compliance Tool. Use the Library's guide to SHERPA/FACT to help you interpret the search results display. If your funder is not listed use SHERPA JULIET which provides a central source of funder open access policy information.

For further assistance, please contact the Library’s open access team.

RCUK

Research Councils UK (RCUK)

Eligibility: available to academic staff with funding from any of the Research Councils: AHRC, BBSRC, ESRC, EPSRC, MRC, NERC and STFC, and RCUK-funded (fellowship) PhD students

Author criteria: RCUK funded corresponding or co-author when an acknowledged (in paper) RCUK grant is held at Imperial

Publication types: peer-reviewed journal articles and conference papers

APC licence: Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) only

Repository: MRC: PubMed Central; BBSRC, EPSRC, NERC, STFC: any; ESRC: ERSC Catalogue

Acceptable embargo period: MRC: 6 months; BBSRC, EPSRC, NERC, STFC: 12 months; ESRC: 24 months

Who can deposit: author or publisher

Imperial rules: corresponding author must be at Imperial and accepted manuscript should be uploaded to Symplectic at time of APC application

Source of APC funding: APCs are not eligible costs on research grants from these funders. Grant holders should apply for open access funds via the Library.

Full policy:  Imperial RCUK Fund Management Policy (pdf) and RCUK Policy on Open Access (pdf)

To apply: Log in to Symplectic and click on Deposit your work

COAF

Charity Open Access Fund

Eligibility: available to researchers with funding from Wellcome Trust, Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Bloodwise or Parkinson’s UK

Author criteria: member of staff is at Imperial College London and meets one of the following:

1) Research has been funded in whole or in part through a Wellcome Trust, Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Bloodwise or Parkinson’s UK grant (either during the award, or after the funding period has ended).

2) Researcher is a Wellcome Trust, Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Bloodwise or Parkinson’s UK Investigator Award holder/ Wellcome Fellow or any other individual in receipt of salary support from one of the charities appears as a co-author during the period of their award (this applies even where the specific research project is not COAF-funded).

3) Research has been carried out from Wellcome Trust Centres/Africa & Asia Programmes which has been supported through the Core Award, even if the research has been primarily supported by grants from one or more other funders.

Publication types: peer-reviewed journal articles and non-commissioned reviews

APC licence: Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) only

Repository: PubMed Central

Acceptable embargo period: 6 months

Who can deposit: publisher only

Imperial rules: the accepted manuscript should be uploaded to Symplectic at time of APC application. Where a journal does not meet the rules of the Charity Open Access Fund but meets the policy of your funder, you should speak to the charity direct about APC funding

Source of APC funding: APCs are not eligible costs on research grants from these funders. Grant holders should apply for open access funds via the Library.

Full policy: Charity Open Access Fund policy

To apply: Log in to Symplectic and click on Deposit your work

Non- compliant papers: the Wellcome Trust will withhold the final 10% of the ‘total transferable funds’ budget on a grant where non-compliant publications are identified in an end of grant report, see Complying with our open access policy. Sanctions apply to Wellcome funded research papers published since 1 October 2009.

FP7 and Horizon2020

FP7 and Horizon2020

Publication types: peer-reviewed journal articles

APC licence: Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) preferred, but other CC licences are acceptable

Repository: Spiral or suitable subject repository

Acceptable embargo period: STM: 6 months HMM: 12 months

Who can deposit: author or publisher

Imperial rules: use award funding before applying to the Imperial Open Access Fund (for fully open access journals only)

Source of APC funding: active research award or once closed, Imperial College Open Access Fund (for fully open access journals)

Full policy: Open Access in FP7 and  Open Access to Scientific Publications and Research Data in Horizon 2020 (pdf)

To apply: Log in to Symplectic and click on Deposit your work

NIHR

National Institute for Health Research

Publication types: publication of peer-reviewed research articles (including review articles not commissioned by publishers) and conference proceedings

APC licence: Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) only

Repository: Spiral or PubMed Central

Acceptable embargo period: not specified

Who can deposit: author or publisher

Imperial rules: the accepted manuscript should be uploaded to Symplectic at time of APC application

Source of funding: an NIHR Open Access Fund is to be established but is not yet available.

Full policy: NIHR Policy on Open Access for its funded research

To apply: Log in to Symplectic and click on Deposit your work

No external funder

Eligibility: available to researchers who do not have eligible open access funding in their research award or whose work is not externally funded. Publishing in a full OA journal, which is listed in Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). It must be established that co-authors do not have OA funding available before accessing Imperial fund.

Author criteria: at least one of the authors was at Imperial when the paper was submitted, and that there should be Imperial affiliation and/or acknowledgement, where possible, that we paid the APC.

NHS Trust staff are not eligible for APC funding. Staff with honorary contracts will be eligible to apply to the fund.

Publication types: peer-reviewed journal articles and other publication types on request

APC licence: Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) preferred, but other CC licences are acceptable

Repository: Spiral or suitable subject repository

Acceptable embargo period: not applicable

Who can deposit: author or publisher

Imperial rules: the accepted manuscript should be uploaded to Symplectic at time of APC application

Source of funding: Imperial Open Access Fund (for fully open access journals only)

Full policy: Imperial's open access policy

To apply: Log in to Symplectic and click on Deposit your work