This page offers advice on what research staff at the RVC must do when publishing in journals in order to comply with the Open Access policies of the College, of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, and, additionally, research funding bodies like BBSRC, Wellcome, Cancer Research UK, and other, if the research was supported by grant funding from any of these organisations. The advice below is organised according to different policies. If you have any questions, or if your funder's policy is not listed below, please contact the publications team for support. 


The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) policy mandates that all journal articles and conference papers appearing in a publications with an ISSN be deposited in a repository within three (3) months of acceptance for publication, in order to be eligible for submission to the next Research Excellence Framework (REF 2021). This policy is effective as of April 1, 2016.

To comply with HEFCE policy, and to make your publications eligible for submission to the next REF, please first ensure that the journal to which you are submitting supports open access. The information on the journal compliance page of our site will help you verify. 

When your paper has been accepted for publication, please forward the notice of acceptance, along with the final manuscript version of your article, to the The publications team will ensure that the bibliographic details of the publication are registered on the RVC repository, and that the necessary documents are deposited. 

If an Article Processing Charge (APC) has been paid in order to publish the article as 'gold' Open Access, we will deposit the version of record when it is published by the journal. 

If no such charge has been paid, the author's accepted manuscript will be deposited and hosted on the repository as restricted access, according to the embargo period that is specified in the journal's open access policy, and made available when that period expires. 


If you are in receipt of funding from an RCUK funding bodiy (e.g. BBSRC, MRC, NERC), your obligations with respect to Open Access are a little more stringent. RCUK policy requires that journal articles and conference proceedings resulting from BBSRC-sponsored research be made available Open Access within six (6) months of the publication date. It also mandates that the funding information be included within the acknowledgement section of a paper.

You can comply with RCUK Open Access policy by publishing in your work as 'gold' (immediate) open access, or by depositing a copy of the final peer-reviewed manuscript in a repository to be openly available within 6 months after publication. In addition to this advice please note the following:

  • To aid researchers in compliance with this policy, the Councils provide block funding to institutions such as ours to pay the Article Processing Charge (APC) that is typically associated with publishing 'gold' Open Access. If you are publishing an article that is the result of RCUK funding, contact the research office to inquire about the availability of these funds to cover the cost. 
  • Where an APC is paid for immediate (gold) Open Access, the article must be published under a CC BY licence.
  • For green open access, a CC-BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC-BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
  • RCUK encourages authors to deposit their articles in Europe PubMed Central (EuropePMC). 
  • Deposit of the accepted manuscript or the version of record on PMC Europe for release within 6 months of publication would satisfy RCUK policy. If a journal's embargo period for deposit on an institutional repository is greater than 6 months, you may still be able to achieve compliance via the green OA route if the policy allows for PMC deposit within 6 months.


It is the RVC's policy to support green open access for all research outputs published in journals by RVC staff. 

This mean that a version of any paper authored or co-authored by RVC staff must be made available on the RVC research repository. This can be the version of record, if gold open access has been arranged, or it can be the Accepted Manuscript, if using the 'green' route.

Either way, RVC researchers must notify the research office of the acceptance of any submitted paper. If you are not paying to publish gold open access, you must also send the final accepted manuscript to after receiving notice of acceptance.  

For the college's full policy on Open Access, please see the RVC Open Access policy (.docx file)

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