The Optimal Open Access Policy for Institutions Print
Institutional Managers & Policy Makers

The following optimal wording for an Institutional Policy on Open Access for [institution] is recommended to accommodate publisher embargoes:

The [institution name] expects the authors of papers reporting publicly-funded research to maximise the accessibility, usage and applications of their findings. To this end:
The [institution name]:
(1) requires electronic copies of any research papers that have been accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, and are supported in whole or in part by public funding, to be deposited into the institutional digital repository immediately upon acceptance for publication.
(2) requires that the metadata (title, authors, institutional affiliation, name of journal that has accepted the paper) be exposed from the time of deposition of the research paper
(3) requires that the full-text be exposed no later than 6 months after publication of the research paper
(4) encourages authors to retain ownership of the copyright of published papers where possible
The policy should be accompanied by an explanation to authors as to why Open Access to research outputs is desirable for both themselves and the institution.
The following FAQs may also be included to provide extra contextual information:
What are the benefits to researchers of Open Access?
As authors, researchers benefit because their research papers are given a much wider dissemination and can be read without restriction by anyone with Internet access. This increases the impact of their research. Indeed, evidence is accumulating to show that open access articles are cited 25-250% more than non-open access articles from the same journal and year. As readers, researchers benefit because they will increasingly be able to access and use the full text of all the research published in their area, not just the research available to them via the subscriptions their institution can afford.
What are the benefits to [institution name]?
First, [institution name's] research will be more accessible to global researchers, hence better known and more widely used and cited. The prestige of high-profile [institution name] researchers will increase; even lesser-known researchers will gain more exposure and impact. Second, all [institution name] research will be open to all [institution name] entrepreneurs and the general public with Internet access. This will be beneficial both commercially and culturally. Third, access, usage and citation data on this research will increasingly become available and analysable to help shape researchers', institutions' and nations' strategies and policies.
What should be deposited when I have a paper ready for publication?
The final manuscript of the author's research paper should be deposited. This is the author's own final draft, as accepted for journal publication, including all modifications resulting from the peer-review process. (In addition, depositing pre-peer-review preprint drafts is welcome, if the author desires early priority and peer feedback, but this is of course not a requirement. In some cases publishers may permit their own published version, either in SGML/XML or PDF, to be deposited as well; this too is welcome, but not a requirement.)
When should papers be deposited?
An electronic version of the author's final manuscript resulting from research supported, in whole or in part, by public funding must be deposited immediately upon acceptance for publication.
Will authors still be able to publish in a journal of their choice?
Authors will of course still decide in which journal they choose to publish their research papers. They will merely have to ensure that a copy of the final, peer-reviewed paper is deposited in their institutional repository immediately upon acceptance for publication.
How can I find out whether my journal has a policy compliant with depositing my manuscript in my institutional repository?
You should consult the individual journal's policy which is given at: or at About two-thirds of journals do allow this practice. If the journal you wish to publish in does not permit it, please remember that your contractual obligations are first to this institution and then to journal publishers.
How do I ensure contractual compliance?
Authors' contractual obligations with this institution to conduct their research pre-date any contractual agreement with the journal in which the resulting research is published (apart from the brief transitional period when this new policy is first announced). Hence authors can ensure in advance that any later contractual agreement for publishing their research complies with the author's earlier contractual agreement with the institution, informing the journal that they are under an existing obligation to deposit in an open access repository. The [institution’s] rules are mandatory and binding on all employees carrying out research in the institution.
What kind of papers should I deposit?
The policy applies to peer-reviewed, original (primary) research publications and reviews that have been supported, in whole or in part, by public funding. The policy does not apply to book chapters, editorials, or book reviews, though these are welcome in the [institution name]’s repository if authors wish to make them available, and will benefit from the same increased visibility and impact as journal articles.
Do I need to deposit my paper if the journal publishing my research already provides immediate open access to my articles?
Yes. The [institution name] still wishes to have your work deposited in our repository to enable it to maintain a compete record of institutional research output.
This policy is available as an RTF file and in PDF format
Last Updated on Monday, 09 March 2009 11:36