What is Open Access?

What is Open Access?

Open Access means making research publications and data freely available so anyone can benefit from reading and using research.

Open Access originates from the principle that publicly funded research should be made publicly available, ensuring that the outcomes of research reach the widest audience as quickly as possible.

Research is classed as Open Access when it is freely available to read, share, and reuse, without any legal, financial, or technical barriers.

Many funders require Open Access as part of their grant conditions and provide financial support to cover publishing costs. Researchers should be aware of the terms of their funding to ensure they are able to fulfil the Open Access requirements regarding research data and publishing.

For help and information about funder policies and how to meet Open Access requirements please contact Research Services by emailing Discovery@dundee.ac.uk.

The University of Dundee Research Policy sits within the Policy Roadmap as part of the Research Governance and Policy Handbook. Staff should familiarise themselves with these policies prior to undertaking a research project.

Open Access is also a requirement of the UK’s Research Excellence Framework (REF). Specifically, all articles and conference proceedings must be made open access within 12 months of publication, with arrangements in place within 3 months.

Making your research Open Access can be done through the Discovery Research Portal. Research Services offer a mediated deposit service for this which will allow your work to be made Open Access and meet the REF, University, and funder requirements.

Please contact Discovery@dundee.ac.uk when you are accepted for publication or looking to submit your research to a journal or publisher.


How Can I publish Open Access?

Publisher’s offer numerous ways to make your research Open Access. The traditional publishing model, where journals are published behind paywalls and accessed via subscriptions, allows articles to be Open Access by the author (or their institution) paying a one-off fee to make an article freely available without subscription.

An alternative route is to make the accepted manuscript version of an article available via a repository like the Discovery Research Portal. Most publishers have a policy that determines how soon after publication an accepted manuscript can be made Open Access this way.

This form of Open Access is free of charge and can be used to comply with REF and most funder requirements.

An increasing number of journals are publishing all their content Open Access, with no subscription fees. There may be a cost for publication charged to the author which, in many cases, can be paid by a research funder or institution.

The University of Dundee also has a number of Read & Publish agreements with academic publishers. These agreements allow University of Dundee staff to publisher Open Access at no extra cost. Most of the agreements allow articles to be published Open Access regardless of whether they are funded or not. At present, the University has deals with several publishers that allow staff to publish in over 8000 journal titles in a wide range of disciplines including STEM, Arts & Humanities, Social Sciences, Education, and Medicine.

For a list of active Read and Publish agreements, please visit the following website https://libguides.dundee.ac.uk/readandpublish

Use the Open Access Journal Finder to check if a journal is part of a Read and Publish Agreement. 

Get in touch with Research Services via Discovery@dundee.ac.uk for advice on publishing your work Open Access.


Where can I find out more?

More information about Open Access and the services available to support open research in general can be found by reading our handy guide.


Where can I get support?

LLC Research Services offer a range of services to support research staff and students with Open Access.

Contact Discovery@dundee.ac.uk for more information regarding: 

  • Open Access payments
  • Requests for Open Access funding from our institutional fund and Read and Publish agreements
  • Information about Open Access and Research Data Management and how to comply with your funder’s requirements
  • Information about licensing, including Creative Commons
  • REF open access compliance
  • Discovery Research Portal and Pure