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Open Access & Institutional Repository: Policies

Funder Policies

Funder & policy





UKRI (formerly RCUK)









If paid for (gold) open access, Publisher's version and CC BY licence required.

If uploaded to repository, Author's final version and CC BY-NC licence or equivalent.

Published as an open access article in a journal, or uploaded to a repository

See individual Research Council policies for details of repository requirements

See paragraph 3.6 of RCUK guidance for details

Block grant to universities for APCs - see if you are eligible.


Covers payment of APC but not associated publication costs such as page charges or colour charges.

Versus Arthritis (formerly Arthritis Research UK) See COAF      
Blood Cancer UK See COAF      
British Heart Foundation See COAF      
Cancer Research UK See COAF      
COAF: Charity Open Access Fund (Blood Cancer UK, British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Parkinson's UK, Versus Arthritis, Wellcome Trust) Publisher's version and/or Author's final version (CC BY licence required if an APC has been paid and encouraged in other cases) PubMed Central (PMC) or Europe PMC Automatic deposit by the publisher into PubMed Central immediately on publication if an APC has been paid, or author deposit of the author accepted manuscript into Europe PMC within 6 months of publication.

This block grant will cease from 30th September 2020. It covers payment of APC but not associated publication costs such as page charges or colour charges.

The charities are still committed to funding open access but the process has not been confirmed. Their policies can be found here 


The accepted manuscript.


Any repository, including ePrints Soton

Within 6 months for Science, Technology and Maths, or 12 months for Humanities and Social Sciences

Open Access costs can be charged against the grant of open projects.

European Research Council

Publisher's version and/or Accepted Manuscript

Discipline-specific repository if available, or institutional or centralised repository 

Within six months of publication. For publications in the Social Sciences and Humanities domain a delay of up to twelve months is acceptable.

Charge open access costs against grant

Gates Foundation (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation) Publisher version (CC BY licence required) Published as an open access article in a journal and deposited in a specified repository.

From January 1 2017: immediate open access.


The foundation would pay reasonable fees required by a publisher to effect publication on these terms.

Horizon 2020

Final peer-reviewed manuscript or publisher version.

Aim to deposit research data, ideally into a valid data repository, although there is no obligation to do so. 

Gold open access or uploaded into an open access repository (see Section 2.1.1)

Section 2.1: Upload immediately on publication into a repository if gold open access, or within six months of publication, 12 months for Social Sciences and Humanities.

APCs are eligible for reimbursement by the European Commission, they are considered eligible cost to Grants. More info here.



Leverhulme Trust 

No open access requirement



Open access costs are a permissible expense, but must be incurred during the period of the award

NIH (National Institutes of Health) Final peer-reviewed manuscript Upload into the NIH PubMed Central system Within 12 months of publication.

Publication costs, including author fees, may be charged to  NIH grants and contracts on three conditions.

NIHR (National Institute for Health Research)

Publisher version (CC BY licence required)

Gold open access and deposit into Europe PMC

Generally immediate open access. Deposit into Europe PMC within 6 months of publication date.

Updated June 2019 - It is expected that award holders will make provision from their funding award to cover the costs of publishing in an open access journal (previous transition arrangements have been withdrawn). If necessary, researchers may need to contact the awarding NIHR coordinating centre to discuss covering open access costs.

Parkinson's UK See COAF     From October 1st 2015.

Wellcome Trust




Current policy applies for all articles submitted for publication before 1st January 2021. After that, the new policy aligned with Plan S will apply.

WHO (World Health Organization)

Publisher's version and/or Author's final version (CC 3.0 intergovernmental organization (IGO) ported licence required if an APC has been paid)

Gold open access or deposit into Europe PMC

Deposit into Europe PMC within 12 months of the official publication date.

Please include open access costs, where appropriate, in grant applications

This list is not comprehensive; for additional policies, please see SHERPA/JULIET or check the funder’s website.