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Libraries of the Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University

Open Access

Open access, OA, means that research results and publications are made freely accessible online.

Publishing open access is supported by universities, research funders, organisations and publishers all over the world. The board of Lund University decided in November 2005 [pdf in Swedish], that scholarly publications, should, when possible, be disseminated in journals that are freely accessible to the reader.

Increasingly, research funders require that publicly funded research is free and openly accessible. There is often a policy in place that stipulates how (gold, green or hybrid), and when (immediately or after embargo period), the access may take effect. In many cases, costs for publication fees are covered by the funder, the costs are often included in the budget in the initial funding application.

Different paths to open access (gold, green/self-archiving, hybrid)

  • Gold
    When you publish directly with an open access publisher. This usually means that you have to pay an APC (Article Processing Charge) or a BPC (Book Processing Charge).
  • Green/Self-archiving
    When self-archiving, you make your published or accepted publication freely available by uploading a full text version to an institutional repository or research information system, such as LUCRIS or to an open archive.

    If you own the copyright to your publication, you have the right to self-archive the latest version of the publication. In addition, self-archiving may be permitted through an agreement or a policy.  
    Usually, there are restrictions on how the publication may be disseminated. For instance, sometimes you may only self-archive a certain version or there may be an embargo period before self-archiving is permitted.
  • Hybrid
    When you publish in a subscription-based journal or with a traditional publisher, and pay a fee (APC/BPC) to make your publication freely available.

Self-archiving at LU

When signing an agrement with the publisher, make sure that you retain the right to self-archive, as per the decision from 2005: "Överlåtelse av publiceringsrättigheter ska undvikas. Minimikrav för författaren är rätt till parallell publicering."

Many international publishers have general policies for self-archiving. These can usually be found in the SHERPA/RoMEO service, where you can search for the names of journals or publishers for more information. 

If the agreement does not allow self-archiving, try contacting the publisher and ask for permission. Find a letter template on Lund University Libraries' webpage on copyright.

Read more about self-archiving in LUCRIS.

Rights to disseminate (licenses and agreements)

The level of 'open' in open access can vary in terms of how the end user may reuse the publication. 

At the most basic level, the end user is permitted to read the publication, at no cost, on the web. Often, what is permitted beyond that, such as copying, sharing, reusing, modifying, is specified with a CC license. Read more on Creative Commons website.

Journals and publishers often have different terms and conditions for copyright and self-archiving.

Using SHERPA/RoMEO, you can check which terms apply to a specific journal. Do check when the information was updated last and read the terms on the journal/publisher's own website if there is any uncertainty.

Find the right publishing channel

The easiest way to publish OA is to start with selecting a channel, publisher or journal that supports and publishes OA. 

Dubious OA Publishers

Unfortunately, researchers sometimes get offers to publish open access by predatory publishers. Please get in touch if you have any questions or want us to take a look at a particular publisher. Read more about dubious OA publishers on the University Library's website 

Publication Fees (APC/BPC)

An increasing number of journals and publishers offer authors some model of publishing OA. Many, but far from all OA publications are financed via so called article processing charges (APC) or book processing charges (BPC).

The fees vary, but around 1500 USD is an often quoted figure for publishing in an OA journal. Publishing via the hybrid model may cost twice that, cirka 3000 USD/article. The book processing charges also vary, much depending on which type of license the author selects.

In June 2018, we checked some of the main publishers' article processing charges, with links to information and terms: Overview APC (juni 2018) (PDF).

We also compiled the corresponding information on a few main publishers' book processing charges: Overview BPC (maj 2018). (PDF)

Support for publication fees

The University Library administers funds that can be used to pay APCs (50% of the fee) in all OA journals that meet certain quality requirements. Publications in hybrid journals or with delayed OA will not be granted funding. Publishing OA is then instead funded by the author, his/her department or through external funding. Read more about applying for funds from LU's APC fund on the University Library web page on Support for Publication Fees.

Lund University has a number of agreements with publishers that provide discounts on author fees or publishing in OA or hybrid journals at no cost to the author. Read more about the different publisher agreements on the University Library's website.