Funder Requirements

The open access policies of the major funders of research at Newcastle University are summarised below. We recommend authors check that their publication will meet their funder requirements using the following services:

  • SHERPA/FACT - check if a journal meets funder requirements for open access.
  • SHERPA/ROMEO - publisher policies on copyright and self-archiving.


Policy Summary

Research Councils UK (RCUK) represents the AHRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, ESRC, MRC, NERC and STFC.

Peer-reviewed research articles (including non-commissioned reviews) and conference proceedings arising from research funded by the RCUK must be made open access via either the Gold or Green routes. The decision on which route to open access to follow remains at the discretion of the researchers and their research organisations.

University Research Commitee (URC) agreed that where an RCUK-compliant green open access option is offered by the publisher, authors are expected to comply via this route. Gold open access will only be paid for publications in open access journals or where the paper cannot comply with RCUK policy via the green route.

RCUK Green open access

Where an RCUK-compliant green open access option is offered by the publisher, Newcastle University authors should comply via this route by publishing the article as subscription access and uploading the accepted manuscript to MyImpact. The version uploaded should be the author's manuscript after any changes from peer review, but before publisher copy-editing and typesetting.

RCUK policy allows for publisher embargos on access to manuscripts of 12 months for STEM disciplines (BBSRC, EPSRC, STFC and NERC) and 24 months for arts, humanities and social science (AHRC and ESRC). For papers acknowledging MRC funding, the maximum embargo is 6 months from publication in all circumstances.

The open access team check publisher terms and conditions for all manuscripts uploaded to MyImpact before making them open access in ePrints. We will contact authors to discuss any issues with meeting the requirements of the RCUK open access policy.

Papers acknowledging MRC funding should also be deposited in Europe PubMed Central within 6 months of publication. MRC grantholders will have been issued with a Europe PMC Plus account to deposit papers.

RCUK Gold open access

RCUK provide a block grant to the university to support authors with the costs associated with Gold open access. URC agreed this grant can only be used for eligible publications in fully open access journals or where the paper would be non-compliant with RCUK policy via the green route. Where an RCUK-compliant green open access option is offered by the publisher, applications will be rejected and authors advised how to comply via the green route.

Additionally, the maximum open access fee that can be paid from this grant be capped at £3,500 (inclusive of VAT) and page and colour charges cannot be claimed.

Therefore to be eligible for funds from the RCUK grant, publications must meet the following criteria:

  • An original peer-reviewed research article, conference proceedings or non-commissioned review article
  • Acknowledges funding from one or more RCUK funders
  • Made freely available by the publisher at publication
  • Published with the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) licence (not CC-BY-NC or CC-BY-NC-ND).
  • The open access fee is less than £3,500 (inclusive of VAT)
  • Unable to comply with the RCUK open access policy via the green route (see above)

If your publication meets these criteria, you should apply for RCUK funding.

Statement on access to research data

The RCUK policy on Open Access requires "all research papers, if applicable, to include a statement on how underlying research materials, such as data, samples or models, can be accessed". The Research Data Service can provide guidance on what to include in the data access statement, where to store the data, and under what conditions data does not need to be made open.


RCUK Open Access Policy and Guidance.


Policy Summary

A new Wellcome Trust open access policy will apply from 1 January 2020. Further details are available in a policy explainer and FAQ. It has not yet been confirmed if other COAF funders will also implement this policy.

The Charity Open Access Fund (COAF) is a partnership of the medical research charities Arthritis Research UK, Bloodwise, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Parkinson's UK and the Wellcome Trust.

Peer-reviewed research articles arising from research funded by a COAF partner must be made open access in PubMed Central. COAF prefer immediate open access via the Gold route and provide the university with funds to support this. Where a journal does not offer compliant Gold open access, authors should deposit the accepted manuscript in Europe PubMed Central to provide open access within six months of publication.

COAF Gold open access

Articles arising from research funded by a COAF partner should preferably be made open access via the Gold route. Open access charges can be paid from the university's COAF grant for publications of an eligible type that acknowledge a COAF funder and are published in a compliant journal.

Eligible publication types

COAF can be used to pay open access charges for:

  • Original peer-reviewed research articles
  • Non-commissioned review articles
  • Not-invited review articles
  • Study protocols

COAF cannot be used to pay open access fees for commissioned or invited reviews, conference proceedings, editorials, letters or commentaries or other fees associated with publication, such as page or colour charges.

Publisher requirements

COAF funds can only be paid to publishers that meet COAF publisher requirements as confirmed in SHERPA/FACT.

COAF-compliant publishers have agreed to:

COAF will not allow us to use their funds to pay an invoice from a non-compliant publisher or where an author choses a licence other than CC-BY. Under these circumstances, the payment will be declined and any invoice already issued will be returned to the author.

If your publication meets the COAF criteria, you should choose gold open access and apply for COAF funding.

COAF Green open access

If a journal does not offer COAF-compliant gold open access authors should seek to comply via the green route by depositing the accepted manuscript in Europe PubMed Central via Europe PMC plus to provide open access within six months of publication. Authors are advised to check that the journal self-archiving policy allows for this and to contact us to discuss any issues.

Some publishers automatically deposit accepted manuscripts in PubMed Central where authors declare COAF funding. However, authors should confirm if their journal offers this service and that it will meet COAF requirements.

Wellcome Trust funded monographs and book chapters

Original scholarly monographs and book chapters authored or co-authored by Wellcome grantholders as part of their grant-funded research must be made freely available via PMC Bookshelf and Europe PMC with a maximum embargo of six months. The COAF grant cannot be used to pay open access fees for Wellcome-funded monographs or book chapters. Instead, researchers should follow the Wellcome Trust procedure for reimbursement of open access fees for monographs and book chapters.

Where the publisher charges for open access, the work must be made open access without embargo and with a licence allowing re-use. The Creative Commons CC-BY licence is strongly preferred, but CC-BY-NC and CC-BY-NC-ND are accepted.

  1. Charity Open Access Fund
  2. Arthritis Research UK open access policy
  3. Bloodwise open access policy
  4. British Heart Foundation open access policy
  5. Cancer Research UK open access policy
  6. Parkinson's UK open access policy
  7. Wellcome Trust open access policy

Horizon 2020

Policy Summary

Outputs arising from research funded through the Horizon 2020 programmes of the European Commission are required to be made open access through either the Gold or Green route. APC costs incurred for Gold open access publication during projects are eligible for reimbursement by the European Commission.


Beneficiaries must ensure open access to all peer-reviewed scientific publications relating to its results.

To comply with Horizon2020 open access policy:

  1. Deposit the published version or final peer-reviewed manuscript accepted for publication in a repository such as ePrints (via MyImpact) as soon as possible and at the latest, on publication. This is required even where the paper is Gold open access to ensure long-term preservation of the article.
  2. Moreover, the beneficiary must aim to deposit at the same time the research data needed to validate the results presented in the deposited scientific publication.

  3. Ensure open access to the deposited publication via the repository at the latest:
    1. on publication, if an electronic version is available for free via the publisher (Gold OA), or
    2. within six months of publication (twelve months for publications in the social sciences and humanities) in any other case (Green OA.)
European Commission funding for open access

APC costs incurred by beneficiaries during Horizon 2020 projects are eligible for reimbursement from the European Commission. APC costs incurred after the end of projects are not.

  1. Guidelines on Open Access to Scientific Publications and Research Data in Horizon 2020
  2. EC Policy - Open Science (Open Access)


Policy Summary

Peer-reviewed research articles (including review articles not commissioned by publishers, final reports or executive summaries) arising from research supported through NIHR funding should be made open access via Europe PubMed Central within six months of publication. Where open access is provided via the gold route, associated costs can be supported by the original NIHR grant or an NIHR Open Access Fund.

NIHR Gold open access

Charges for Gold open access publishing can be met from the original NIHR award. Where appropriate, funds may be available from the NIHR through their open access fund. Researchers should contact the awarding NIHR Programme Coordinating Centre for guidance.

Where NIHR funds are used to pay open access charges, articles should be published with a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence and allow for immediate deposit of the final published version in other repositories without restriction on re-use.

NIHR Green open access

Where publisher policy allows, authors should deposit the accepted manuscript in Europe PubMed Central upon acceptance, to be made freely available within six months of publication.

We would also encourage authors to upload the accepted manuscript to MyImpact to facilitate reporting on compliance with the open access requirements for REF.


NIHR open access policy

Breast Cancer Now

Policy Summary

Publications arising from Breast Cancer Now funded research must be available in Europe PMC no later than 12 months after publication. The charity favours the green route to open access. However, open access fees can be paid from underspend on existing grants.

Breast Cancer Now Green open access

Research articles acknowledging Breast Cancer Now must be publicly avaialable in Europe PMC no later than 12 months after publication. Some journals will automatically deposit papers in Europe PMC where a Europe PMC funder is acknowledged. Where this service is not available, grant holders should deposit their accepted manuscripts themselves via Europe PMC plus.

Publisher terms and conditions for archiving in Europe PMC can be checked with Sherpa/Romeo. Please contact us to discuss any issues with meeting the open access requirements of Breast Cancer Now.

Breast Cancer Now Gold open access

Previous arrangements that allowed open access charges to be paid from the university COAF grant ended in September 2016. Breast Cancer Now continues to encourage publications in open access journals and open access format and fees can be paid using any underspend on existing grants.

  1. Breast Cancer Now open access policy
  2. Europe PMC
  3. How to submit a manuscript to Europe PMC
  4. Europe PMC plus