The United Kingdom currently has one of the highest rates of open-access publication in the world, with many researchers posting their research papers on websites that make them publicly available for free. But the country’s leading funding agency today announced a new policy that will push open access even further by mandating that all research it funds must be freely available for anyone to read upon publication.
The UKRI is to congratulated on this excellent move. We strongly believe that important scientific results shouldn’t be locked behind pay walls.
But starting in April 2022, that yearlong delay will no longer be permitted: Researchers choosing green open access must deposit the paper immediately when it is published. And publishers won’t be able to hang on to the copyright for UKRI-funded papers: The agency will require that the research it funds—with some minor exceptions—be published with a Creative Commons Attribution license (known as CC-BY) that allows for free and liberal distribution of the work.