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Open Access

HEFCE Open Access requirement for the post-2014 REF

HEFCE published its policy on Open Access in the post-2014 Research Excellence Framework in March 2014.

The policy applies to journal articles and conference proceedings with an ISSN accepted for publication after 1 April 2016.

The policy states that

“…to be eligible for submission to the post-2014 REF, authors’ final peer-reviewed manuscripts must have been deposited in an institutional or subject repository on acceptance for publication.

Deposited material should be discoverable, and free to read and download, for anyone with an internet connection.”

The policy will not apply to monographs, book chapters, other long-form publications, working papers, creative or practice-based research outputs, or data.

However this presentation from HEFCE indicates that where an institution can demonstrate that it has taken steps towards enabling open access for outputs outside the scope of this definition, credit will be given in the research environment component of the post-2014 REF.

What this means in practice? Deposit on acceptance!

1.      Deposit element

The journal article or conference proceeding with an ISSN must be deposited in an institutional or subject repository within 90 days of acceptance for publication.

Version must be the final, peer-reviewed text (as a minimum).

2.      Open Access element

Output must allow anyone with internet access to search electronically within the text, read it and download it without charge.

Embargo periods are allowable however they should not exceed the following:

a.      12 months for REF main panels A and B.

b.      24 months for REF main panels C and D.

3.      Discovery element

Output must be discoverable to anyone with an internet connection, and to search engines.

How do I comply with the policy?

Submit your journal article or conference proceeding (with an ISSN) details with the associated appropriate full text version to the Middlesex University Research Repository (or appropriate subject repository) within 90 days of acceptance of publication.

See Which version can I make Open Access? for more information about different versions.

See: Which outputs should I deposit in the Middlesex University Research Repository? for information about embargo periods.

See: Post-2014 REF compliance checklist for UK authors (MDX login required).

For further information and updates from HEFCE