University Libraries

Open Access Publishing Fund

In spring 2012, the University established its first Open Access Publishing Fund, with funds from the budget of the University Libraries and the Office of the Vice President of Research. Funds are available to UMN authors from all campuses, to cover the costs of making their publications available to the world. We believe that free online access to published research benefits authors, other researchers, the University, and many people around the world.

Applications are now open. In order to be eligible for support, a work must be:

  • A peer-reviewed journal article, scholarly monograph, conference proceeding, or data set
  • Created by a University of Minnesota author (any faculty, researchers, post-docs, graduate students, or staff)
  • Fully openly available immediately upon publication (no time-delays)
  • Already accepted for publication at the time of application for funding support (added January, 2013)

The following is the full text of the proposal approved by the University Senate:


The Senate Library Committee proposed that University of Minnesota establish an institutional fund to underwrite University of Minnesota authors’ costs in making their published works openly accessible. The fund will be supported by both the Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR) and the University Libraries, and will be overseen by a review panel comprised of sponsors with faculty guidance from an Open Access Subcommittee of the Senate Library Committee. Proposals will be reviewed only to determine if they meet the eligibility criteria listed below with no consideration being given to the content of the manuscript. The fund will cover all scholars on all campuses.

The Senate Library Committee advanced the following standards and principles in allocating funds.

Eligible submissions

Author eligibility

  • All scholars (faculty, researchers, post-docs, graduate students, and staff) at the University of Minnesota may apply for funds for their publications that otherwise qualify.
  • Authors receiving funds must deposit a copy of the publication in an approved open access repository, such as the University Digital Conservancy (the University of Minnesota’s institutional repository) or a recognized discipline repository (e.g., arXiv, AgEcon, PubMedCentral, etc.)
  • In the case of joint authorship, support for author fees will be pro-rated based on the proportional contribution of the University of Minnesota.

Effects of external fund availability (grants, etc.)

  • Authors with no external funding associated with the publication will be given priority, but authors who have external funding that cannot be used to underwrite open access fees will also be eligible. Fees occurring after the closure of a grant are eligible.
  • Authors who could have applied for grant coverage of open access fees but failed to do so will not usually be eligible for institutional open access support, unless their grant application was made before the institutional open access fund existed.

The fund will be established at $20,000 per year of available support to authors, distributed on a rolling basis. The program’s support levels and effectiveness should be evaluated as funds are exhausted or at the end of two years, whichever occurs sooner.




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