Funding Agency Requirements for Open Access Publishing

Over the last couple of years, there has been a growing requirement in Sweden for academic publications to be made freely available (i.e. via open access). A number of Swedish universities has either mandates or policies that their researchers are to/should publish open access. Now, it is also so that the major Swedish research funding agencies also require that work that they have funded be published open access. Vetenskapsrådet (VR) was the first with the requirement pertaining to grants allocated 2010 and later. Other financing agencies have followed suit: Formas, Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, Knut och Alice Wallenbergs Stiftelse, Östersjöstiftelsen and Forskningsrådet för Arbetsliv och Socialvetenskap (FAS).

All of these have the same requirements. Journal and conference articles must be made freely available, with a maximum embargo period from the publication of the original article of 6 months. The latter applies to parallel publishing where some journals require that a parallel published version of an article not be made freely available until a number of months after the original publication of the article. Journal embargo periods vary from 0 to 24 months, normally.

Meeting Funding Agency OA Requirements

One has three choices to meet funding agency OA publishing requirements:

Where Parallel Publishing Does Not Meet the Requirements

One must be a little carefull when relying on parallel publishing as a solution to funding agency requirements. Journals from American Chemical Society, Taylor and Francis, Blackwell/Wiley, Oxford University Press, Sage...(note this is an example list and not necessarily exhaustive) have embargo periods that are 12 months and longer (or in the case of Blackwell/Wiley, some of the journals only allow the pre-peer-reviewed version). If you have published in these channels, the only option available to you is hybrid open access, if it is offered.

It is obvioulsy important to consider this prior to submission of articles, to avoid extra expenses when an article is accepted.