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Open Access & Institutional Repository: Do I have to pay for Open Access?

UKRI Authors: applying for Open Access costs

Applying for payment of open access costs (Article Processing Charges, APCs) for journal articles acknowledging UKRI funding (AHRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, ESRC, MRC, NERC, STFC).

Update: from 27th November, 2020 the Library will no longer approve applications to access funds to pay for publishing in hybrid journals (journals containing both open access and subscription content), unless they are covered by a ‘no additional cost’ transformative agreement with the publisher. We will continue to approve applications from UKRI funded authors to publish in fully open access ('gold') journals.

From 27th November 2020 we can accept applications for open access costs from our UKRI block grant for:

  • articles to be published in fully open access journals with a CC BY licence

Please apply online to the UKRI block grant, managed by the Library, at the point of submission rather than acceptance. This enables eligibility to be checked and funds allocated prior to costs being incurred.

  • Applications for APCs must be made on submission using the online form.  If the application is approved, the provisional offer will stand for 6 months, and can be extended if the paper is still undergoing the review process.
  • We cannot accept applications for page, colour, cover charges or any extra publication charges not related to open access.

APC Application Form

Please contact with any open access enquiries.

Information updated November 2020 to reflect that we can no longer fund hybrid applications.

Funded by Wellcome?

The Wellcome Trust open access policy changed on 01/1/2021. If you have submitted an article before this, refer to the old policy.

We have written a briefing document that outlines the changes and how they will affect you.

Update March 2021: please see this statement from Wellcome on updated guidance and support for researchers where publishers are discouraging open access to Author Accepted Manuscripts. 

Please use the Journal Checker Tool (beta) below to see if your preferred journal is compliant and continue to apply for open access funding using our online form.

Please see text below that all Wellcome grantees must include the following text in all manuscript submissions:

“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”.

When adding an accepted manuscript to a PURE record that resulted from Wellcome Trust funding, please apply a CC-BY licence and add "Funded by Wellcome Trust" to the Bibliographic notes field. 

coalition S Rights Retention Strategy


 Further reading: 

- a cOAlition S blog post explaining the Rights Retention Strategy that the Wellcome Trust are using to implement the Plan S principles. 

- Professor Stephen Eglen at Cambridge University has written a Primer on the Rights Retention Strategy.

How much does it cost?

There is no charge to the author to upload a permitted version of their article into a subject or institutional repository.

If you would like to publish in a journal that will make your article immediately available online, publishers may charge an Article Processing Charge (APC). The cost of this can be upto £3790 depending on the journal with hybrid journals (containing a mix of subscription and open access content) typically being more expensive.

Transformative Agreements: no cost to the author

Our transformative agreements and open access memberships provide open access at no cost to the author. 

Transformative agreements & memberships

  • Transformative agreements (TAs) are a way for publishers to transition their subscription journals to full open access. The costs of open access are part of an overall University of Southampton payment covering both subscriptions and open access publishing. The open access charges are part of the agreement: there is no additional open access cost when a paper is published.
  • Open access memberships and deals cover publishing costs in fully open access journals.

Please note that we do not have a central institutional fund for open access payments that fall outside of these deals; the University of Southampton supports open access via self-archiving your Accepted Manuscript in Pure.

In addition to these deals, we have discounts with the following publishers:

UKRI, Wellcome Trust and Cancer Research UK funded corresponding authors are eligible for a 10% discount: please apply using our APC Application Form and we will cover the cost of the open access charge from the respective block grant.

We are no longer able to facilitate payments from self-funders via this agreement because approvals are binding and we are unable to ensure self-funders have sufficient funds to cover the costs

This is a Jisc agreement covering articles accepted after 10/11/20. End date: November 2022.

Authors associated with the University of Southampton receive 10% discount on APCs if they do not have a discount from another source.

University of Southampton corresponding authors are eligible for a 20% discount on the open access cost (APC) for SAGE fully open access journals.

Our Transformative Agreements page lists details of open access at no cost to the author in SAGE hybrid journals (those with a mix of subscription and open access content).

Applies to articles accepted for publication by 31/12/2022.

Please contact with any open access enquiries.

Who pays for Article Processing Charges (APCs)?

There is a central fund to pay for articles from research funded by the UKRI councils. This fund only pays for articles that are funder-compliant, i.e. have a CC BY licence.  We will not pay any associated publication costs such as colour charges or page charges.

Authors must include funding information in the acknowledgement section of the paper. Further details about how to include this information can be found on the Research Information Network website.

If you are applying for funding from any other funding body, you may need to include the APC in your bid at the start of your research.

Please email if you have queries about payment of Article Processing Charges.

There is a separate fund for NIHR Academic Clinical Fellowships or Clinical Lecturers funded through the NIHR Integrated Academic Training programme. Please see below for more info.

Applying for Article Processing Charges (APCs) - NIHR

Contact Us

For help or advice with any Open Access or ePrints Soton query:



UKRI and Wellcome expect all articles published as Open Access in journals to have a CC BY licence. If you are uploading an article into a subject or institutional repository, you need to have the equivalent of a CC-BY-NC licence.

Useful links