September 14, 2018, by Rob Ounsworth

Open access: research funders issue 2020 deadline

I would like to share with you an important and very significant change that is set to accelerate the transition towards open access (OA) publishing of research outputs, writes Professor Dame Jessica Corner, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Exchange.

From 2020, 11 national funding organisations across Europe, including UKRI, will require that every paper they fund to be freely available from the moment of publication.

This group, launched last week as ‘cOAlition S’, said: “By 2020 scientific publications that result from research funded by public grants provided by participating national and European research councils and funding bodies, must be published in compliant Open Access Journals or on compliant Open Access Platforms.”

The deadline for implementing this is 1 January 2020. Please note that the policy, while referring to ‘science’, includes all research outputs across all disciplines.

Professor Dame Jessica Corner: “We are digesting what this will mean for the University of Nottingham.”

Essentially publishers will be forced to switch to publication models that comply with these principles. This is a significant and important development and will radically transform how we make public the outputs from our research.

cOAlition S has outlined 10 principles of ‘Plan S’ which research funders (as well as stakeholders including universities) from across the world are invited to join….’and thereby contribute to the swift realisation of our vision of science without publication paywalls [restricting access to content via a paid subscription]’

Open access logo

The ten principles contained in Plan S include:

  • Authors to retain copyright of their publications with no restrictions
  • OA fees to be paid by funders or universities, not individual researchers
  • OA publication fees to be capped
  • Funders will ask universities to align their policies and strategies
  • Hybrid publishing models, which charge subscriptions but also make individual papers OA for an extra fee
  • Funders will monitor compliance and sanction non-compliance

At the moment we are digesting what this will mean for the University of Nottingham.

The announcement raises many questions for institutions, libraries and researchers, and how we might engage with our own researchers about this. We will discuss what these changes mean with our research community.

We will give you opportunities to inform any necessary updates to our policies, help decide how best as an institution we align ourselves with this new landscape, and how best to support our researchers in sharing their discoveries.

For now I wanted to share this important announcement with our research community and all colleagues who support delivery of our research outputs.

I invite you to reflect on this announcement and anticipate your robust and thoughtful responses as we consult colleagues on the University’s policies – both at a strategic level, and how we engage and support our research community with the demands and opportunities of open access.

Find out more

The cOAlition S statement on Making Open Access a reality by 2020

Plan S: UKRI joins European open-access ‘revolution’

Commentary from Science magazine

Research Libraries UK: Plan S – A major shift for Open Access in Europe

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