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Library Research Support: Open Research: Paying for Open Access

This guide is intended to provide advice and support on open access research, including guidance around Durham Research Online (DRO), open access publishing, research data management and related topics.

This guide outlines the support available to authors at Durham University, where the option to publish open access will incur a charge. 

  • Funder Open Access Block Awards: Funding available for eligible authors and articles.
  • Durham University Funding: Limited funding support from Durham University Library & Collections.
  • Publisher deals: We may have an agreement with a publisher which will cover some or all of the open access charges for an article.
  • Rights Retention: Alternative options available to funded authors where funding is unavailable.

Paying for Open Access

Funding available to cover open access publication costs

Authors seeking to publish open access in a journal or conference proceeding may be presented with a charge, usually in the form of an Article Processing Charge (APC), levied by a publisher in order to cover their costs for publication.

The guide outlines the different mechanisms available to authors at Durham, which may be able to cover the costs of open access publication where these apply. 


Key prinicples for authors
There remain several key principles to follow for all Durham Authors:
  • Authors should be comfortable that any costs indicated by the journal or publisher are reasonable for the services being provided. If not, you should consider whether publication in another venue is more appropriate.
    • APCs vary significantly, but the average APC we paid in 2021-22 was £2,549.90 (inc VAT), and ranging in price from £612.88 to £5,028.00.
  • You should be certain that the journal is a trusted and credible research publisher, and that the journal of publication is not a predatory journal.
  • In line with the University's Research Integrity Policy 10.1.(e), all researchers should "appropriately acknowledge anyone who has directly or indirectly assisted their work. This includes collaborators, funders and participants."
  • In line with the University's Research Integrity Policy 10.1.(f), all researchers should "adhere to any conditions set by funding or other bodies regarding the publication of data or findings, including the timing and manner of publication (e.g. open access)."
  • In line with the University's Open Access Policy 4.2.(iv), ensuring before submitting to a publisher that "the means to pay any resulting APCs charged by a journal are in place" and "communicating to the required persons at the earliest opportunity, if funding is required for the payment of an APC, where this may be charged to any external or centrally held funding."
UKRI Open Access Block Award
Durham University receives an Open Access Block Award from UKRI to support compliance with its open access policy for research articles. The use of this block grant is permitted to cover a range of costs, but it is important to note that some costs are no longer permitted as eligible costs chargeable to this block award.

For the period April 1st 2022 to March 31st 2023, Durham University has received an award of £553,381.

 

Conditions of use

This funding may be used where:

  • An article is required to acknowledge funding from UKRI or any of its Research Councils
    AND...
  • The required acknowledgement of that funding has been included in the article in line with the expectations of the funder.
    AND...
  • One of the following statements is true:
    • The corresponding author on the research article is affiliated with the University of Durham, OR;
    • The Principal investigator (PI) of the acknowledged grant is affiliated with the University of Durham.

We have set out below the detail of what can and cannot be charged to the UKRI block award, for information. Please contact openaccess.publishing@durham.ac.uk if you are unsure if any open access costs can be covered by an existing central funding stream.

Eligible Costs

This following are costs authors may face which we are able to charge to the UKRI Open Access Block Award, whilst funds remain:

Fully Open Access Journals and Platforms

  • Article Processing Charges (APCs) (and similar charges under other funding models) for publication in a fully open access journal which is registered in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
  • Submission fees for articles in fully open access journals registered in the DOAJ, and other open access platforms (see UKRI OA FAQ H12 "Can the block grant be used for journal submission fees?") where publication will otherwise be in compliance with UKRI Open Access Policy.
  • APCs or other charges which support open access publication in fully open access platforms, other than open access journals mentioned above.
  • Find out how to request funds from the Block Grant Award here

Hybrid Open Access Journals

The UKRI Open Access Block Award can NOT be used to cover the cost of APCs in hybrid journals, except in the following cases:


Costs which can no longer be charged to the UKRI Open Access Block Award
The following costs can no longer be charged to the UKRI Open Access Block Award.
  • APCs or other open access costs for publication in any hybrid journal, except where covered in exceptions listed above as eligible costs.
  • Any other non-open access charges associated with publication, including page and colour charges, and non-open access publication charges and fees.

In addition, open access access fees associated with monographs, book chapters and edited collections can not be charged to the UKRI open Access Block Award. UKRI will be making dedicated funding available once the monographs policy is live in 2024, and before then it is permissible to include these costs in grant applications.


Funding from the UKRI Open Access Block Award is used to cover the 'publish' element of some publisher agreements, where these are eligible costs. These allow us to Durham authors to publish open access in thousands of journals at no additional cost at the point of publication.
Wellcome Trust Open Access Block Award
The Library receives a small Block Grant Award from the Wellcome Trust. This award is to fund open access publishing costs for original research papers which have been supported in whole or in part by Wellcome, and published in line with their Open Access policy.

Full guidance on funding is available via Wellcome here.

 

Conditions of use

This funding may be used where:

  • An article which is required to acknowledge funding from the Wellcome Trust, and where that required acknowledgement of that funding has been included in the article,
    AND...
  • One of the following statements is true:
    • The corresponding author on the research article is affiliated with the University of Durham, OR;
    • The Principal investigator (PI) of the acknowledged grant is affiliated with the University of Durham.

We have set out below the detail of what can and cannot be charged to the Wellcome Trust block award, for information. Please contact openaccess.publishing@durham.ac.uk if you are unsure if any open access costs can be covered by an existing central funding stream.

Eligible Costs

This following are costs authors may face which we are able to charge to the Wellcome Trust Open Access Block Award:

Fully Open Access Journals and Platforms

  • Article Processing Charges (APCs) (and similar charges under other funding models) for publication in a fully open access journal which is registered in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
  • APCs or other charges which support open access publication in fully open access platforms, other than open access journals mentioned above.
  • APCs for research/study protocols, systematic reviews, scoping reviews and meta-analyses published in fully open access journals and platforms.

Hybrid Open Access Journals

The Wellcome Trust Open Access Block Award can in general terms NOT be used to cover the cost of APCs in hybrid journals, except in the following cases:

  • APCs for articles published in Hybrid Journals which are covered by a JISC-approved transitional agreement to which Durham University is a party to, and where the article is covered by that agreement. See Wellcome's support for Transformative Arrangements 2021-2024.
    • In these instances, the APC will usually be automatically covered by the agreement and there will be no APC payable by the author or the University.
  • APCs and other open access costs for publication in journals approved by cOAlition-S as meeting the research sector requirements for a sustainable transition to open access. See the Plan S Addendum for compliant Transformative Journals
  • APCs for articles published in Hybrid Journals, where the journal is covered by a JISC-approved transitional agreement, but where the APC for a specific article is not covered by that agreement because:
  • APCs for articles in Hybrid Journals where the author originally submitted their manuscript to that journal before January 1st 2021, and where the article will otherwise be able to meet the requirements of the Wellcome Trust Open Access policy.

Costs which can not be charged to the Wellcome Trust Open Access Block Award
The following costs can no longer be charged to the UKRI Open Access Block Award.
  • APCs or other open access costs for publication in any hybrid journal, except where covered in exceptions listed above as eligible costs.
  • Any other non-open access charges associated with publication, including page and colour charges, and non-open access publication charges and fees.

In addition, open access access fees associated with monographs, book chapters and edited collections can not be charged to the Wellcome Trust Open Access Block Award. These must instead be requested directly from the Trust, as detailed on the policy guidance pages.

Durham University Open Access Funding
The University recognises that existing funding streams from funders, including UKRI and the Wellcome Trust, are insufficient to support the total potential costs of open access publishing for both funded and unfunded Durham authors.

A paper was discussed at University Research Committee (17th March 2022) and University Provost Board (4th April 2022) and support was agreed in principle to the establishment of an appropriate funding stream to support open access publication in line with University Strategy, where authors could not be supported via other means. This funding stream, if confirmed, will not be available until August 1st 2022 at the earliest.

Recognising this funding gap, University Library and Collections has agreed to offer limited open access funding support, available as outlined below for any costs identified on or before 31st July 2022.

Conditions of use

This funding may be used where:

  • An article which is required to acknowledge funding from either (i) UKRI or any of its Research Councils or (ii) the Wellcome Trust.
    AND...
  • Where the required acknowledgement of that funding has been included in the article in line with the expectations of the funder.
    AND...
  • The article is unable to meet the open access requirements of the acknowledged funder through any other means (e.g. Route 2: Green Open Access)
    AND...
  • The costs for open access publication are not eligible costs chargeable to any other source of funding (including, but not limited to, any funder open access block award, costs in the original funding award or any individual or department research incentivisation funding)
    AND...
  • One of the following statements is true:
    • The corresponding author on the research article is affiliated with the University of Durham, OR;
    • The Principal investigator (PI) of the acknowledged grant is affiliated with the University of Durham.
All authors should also have included the appropriate Rights Retention Statement in their submitted manuscript, so that if we are unable to cover the costs of publication the author still has a means of meeting their funders contractual open access requirements.

Eligible Costs

The following are costs authors may face which may be able to covered:

  • Article Processing Charges (APCs) up to £3,000 + VAT.

Where an APC exceeds £3,000 + VAT, and cannot be covered in full by any other available funding, please contact us at openaccess.publishing@durham.ac.uk at the earliest opportunity to discuss options which may be available.

At present, we can only commit to cover eligible costs which are invoiced for between 1st April 2022 and 31st July 2022, and as we have limited funding available we can not guarantee that funds will be available to cover all APCs during this period.


 

Transitional Agreements and other Publisher deals

We have leveraged existing funding streams to support open access publication through a range of publisher agreements, many negotiated at a national level through cooperation with other Research Organisations across the sector.

These include Transitional Agreements (such as with Springer, Elsevier and the Cambridge and Oxford University Presses), agreements with native open access publishers (such as Public Library of Science, Open Library of Humanities and Frontiers) and Compliant Green agreements (such as with AAAS).

They are aimed to support Durham authors to make their research open access immediately upon publication, whilst constraining the costs of subscription access and publication and ensuring a sustainable income stream for academic publishers.

Further details of existing publisher agreements can be found on our Publisher Agreements Guide.


What are Transitional Agreements?
A transitional agreement is a purchase model for access to the journal content of a publisher, which is intended to convert subscription expenditure to support immediate open access publishing of research output in those journals covered by the deal, in addition to continued access to non-open access content that remains behind a paywall.

Transitional Agreements can take several forms, including:
 
  • Read and Publish: Institutions pay one fee to read paywalled content and to enable their authors to publish OA in a journal or group of journals. Typically, the "read" element of the fee is based on current subscription spend and the "publish" element of the fee is based on recent APC spend or recent published output.
    • Examples: Springer Compact, Wiley Read and Publish Agreement
  • Publish and Read: All institutions pay an agreed amount for papers published by affiliated authors and receive read access to the publisher's content for no extra cost. The fee can be fixed based on historic output multiplied by a notional APC or calculated over the agreement period by multiplying actual articles published by the notional APC.
    • Examples: PNAS Publish and Read Agreement, Wiley and Projeckt DEAL (Germany)
  • Subscribe to Open: Converts subscription access journals to OA using existing library subscription income, with no fees for publishing.
    • Examples: Annual Reviews S2O, Berghan Open Anthro

 


The Rights Retention Approach

"Rights Retention" is a new initiative from cOAlition-S funders, including the Wellcome Trust, UKRI and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, each of whom has published cOAlition-S aligned policies which include a rights retention requirement.


What is the 'Rights Retention Strategy'?

The key expectation on authors from funders is to make their research articles Open Access immediately on publication, without embargo, and under a clear open licence, usually a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence

Rights retention supports the green (self-archiving) open access route (Route 2 in both the UKRI and Wellcome Trust Open Access policies), and aims to allow an author to publish in their journal of choice (even if that published Version of Record (VoR) remains behind a subscription paywall), whilst ensuring an author retains the right to share their Author Accepted Manuscript (AAM) immediately upon publication, in line with the expectations of their funder.

It essentially takes the form of an author including a statement in all article manuscripts submitted for publication, notifying the publisher of their funding obligations and that they, as author, are retaining the right to share their accepted manuscript under those terms.

The intended outcome is that:

  • Authors
    • Retain the rights to share and re-use their own AAM as they wish.
    • Are able to meet the open access requirements where these form any terms and conditions in their funding contract.
  • Institutions
    • Can share the accepted manuscripts provided to them by authors immediately from their institutional open access repository.
    • Can provide clear and consistent guidance for authors on how to comply and how and when AAMs will be shared.
  • Researchers
    • Gain immediate open access to a peer-reviewed version of research publications, which would otherwise be hidden behind a subscription paywall.
    • Through the use of standard open licencing can clearly see how they can, and cannot, re-use that published research.
  • Publishers
    • Are clearly notified at the first point of submission of the funder's open access requirements that the author of the manuscript is obliged to meet.
  • Funders
    • Can ensure the authors they fund have a mechanism for making research open access immediately upon publication which is not dependent upon an author's ability to pay for publishing.

What do researchers need to do?

This is advice is for research articles in scope of the Wellcome Trust Open Access policy, or research articles submitted after 1st April 2022 and in scope of the UKRI Open Access policy. 

Researchers are required to include a clear statement following the wording provided by their respective funder when submitting their manuscript for publication. This wording should be included in the funding acknowledgements section of the manuscript, and in any cover letter, email or submission system note accompanying the submission. 

Where an article acknowledges funding from both funders, the authors can choose either form of wording - it is not required that both statements are included.

UKRI
  • "For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising."
Wellcome
  • "This research was funded in whole, or in part, by the Wellcome Trust [Grant number]. For the purpose of Open Access, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising from this submission."

[Note that in both cases, where the author has requested and received permission from their funder to use an alternate open licence, then the licence applied can be substituted in the wording included.]


Challenges we will face

We do not know how all publisher's will respond to the inclusion of this statement, and we are aware some publisher's may contact an author, at various stages of the submission/publication process, about this statement (whilst some publisher's have indicated they will accept its use and have no concerns with its inclusion).

Please contact openaccess.publishing@durham.ac.uk if you have any concerns about its use, or are able to share any response received by a publisher.

We have set out the advice currently provided by funders below:

Wellcome
  • If a journal refuses to accept a submission which makes clear that any Author Accepted Manuscripts arising from the submission will already be licensed under a prior CC BY licence, you will need to reconsider where to publish your research. In such cases, let us know and we’ll update the journal’s details in the Journal Checker Tool.
  • Where a journal accepts a submission with a prior CC BY licence, but on acceptance imposes terms and conditions, via a publishing agreement or otherwise, that prevent you from meeting our OA requirements, follow these steps:
    • If the journal provides a paid open access option for individual articles, seek to publish via this route and request a waiver from the journal for the article processing charge (APC). NOTE: Wellcome funds can’t be used to pay the APC.
    • If the waiver requested in Step 1 is not given, then request a publishing agreement amendment via the journal editorial office. You can use this template addendum.
    • •If the requests outlined in Step 1 and Step 2 above are both rejected by the journal, contact Wellcome (openaccess@wellcome.org)
UKRI
  • If a publisher rejects your submission, advises you will need to pay for open access charges or changes terms of publication, contact your research organisation for advice.

 


 

Publisher Agreements

Publisher Agreements (Link to guide)

UKRI Policy

UKRI Open Access Policy

Wellcome Trust Policy

Wellcome Trust Open Access Policy

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