Open Access Support for University of Nottingham Authors

Introduction | RCUK & Open Access | Open Access FAQ | Using a Repository | Help

RCUK and Open Access Mandates

The UK Research Councils (RCUK) have released a statement on the dissemination of research outputs ( Apart from the EPSRC, individual Research Councils have released their own more detailed policies which introduce requirements for grant holders to make their work available through "Open Access" as a condition of grant. Further information on these policies and the requirements is available from the Research Councils' websites.

The Wellcome Trust and other major bio-medical research funders have also introduced a policy on "Open Access" which requires grantholders to submit an electronic copy of the final manuscripts of their research papers into UK PubMed Central (UKPMC) (

Over the period September 2006 to February 2007, the University Research Committee consulted with colleagues and formulated proposals to update and develop the University's policy in this area. This produced the following recommendations:

Key Recommendations

The key recommendation from the Research Councils is that where possible, research outputs - peer-reviewed articles, book-chapters, etc - that arise from a grant should be made available through an Open Access route. Material that is Open Access is freely available through the web, without using any of the special licences and subscriptions that universities and other readers currently have to hold in order to give access for staff. The purpose of the recommendation is to increase the dissemination, readership and use of funded research.

Research in this area has shown positive benefits for academics such that making their work available in this way increases readership and citations. It is important to note that this does not alter any current dissemination or publication process. It does not affect peer-review in any way. This is a supplement to normal dissemination methods and is in no way a replacement.

Requirements for authors - and University support

Currently six Research Councils (AHRC, BBSRC, ESRC, MRC, NERC, STFC) have mandates which require Open Access dissemination for outputs from grant-funded projects. Other funding bodies have released recommendations that research outputs be disseminated via Open Access routes. This is part of a world-wide move towards Open Access dissemination involving other funding bodies.

The University maintains an Open Access repository called Nottingham ePrints that is suitable for use in fulfilling the requirements and recommendations from some of the Research Councils. University staff are encouraged to use this resource both to meet the specific requirements of the Research Councils and for any other research outputs where staff choose that they should be available through Open Access.

Some funding bodies, such as the Wellcome Trust, have a requirement for authors to deposit their articles in a national repository called UK PubMed Central. Some publishers offer an Open Access Option when publishing material where for an additional cost, the publisher will archive the article on behalf of the author. The Wellcome Trust has provided the University with additional funds to assist individuals funded by them to meet the cost of this Open Access publishing option.

Information, advice and assistance

There is a short document "Research Outputs and Funder Policies" which outlines the responsibilities of University of Nottingham researchers to provide open access and the assistance which is available.

Enquiries about accessing the funds provided by the Wellcome Trust should be directed to Research Innovation Services.

A summary and further information on the different funding bodies' policies in this area is available through a SHERPA service called JULIET.

A summary and further information on the different publishers' policies relating to open access archiving is available through a SHERPA service called RoMEO.

For further advice or assistance please contact your Library Faculty Team.