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Open Access Publishing Support: UCSB Open Access Publishing Support

UCSB OA Publishing Fund

The UCSB Open Access (OA) Publishing Fund supports authors who want to make their research available to readers free of charge immediately upon publication. After applying to the fund and being approved, eligible authors will be reimbursed for article processing charges (APCs) for articles published in eligible journals.

The OA Fund is supported and administered by the UCSB Library. 

  • The fund covers the cost of APCs in open access journals so that no UCSB author who desires to publish open access is disadvantaged by the lack of funds to cover relevant fees.
  • The fund draws on monies that were added to the Library’s acquisition budget through the Chancellor’s Library Initiative to address inflation in library material costs and support new needs.
  • The fund will be assessed annually for effectiveness, fairness, and sustainability since funding in open access publishing is a rapidly changing landscape.

The UC Academic Senate Open Access Policy implements what is known as "green OA."  Under this policy, authors continue to publish in their journals of choice, and once an article has been published, the authors are granted the right to upload the final version of that article to eScholarship, UC’s OA repository. 

The UCSB Open Access Publishing Fund supports the publication of articles in “gold OA” journals. Gold OA means that all articles are made freely available to the public immediately upon publication. To make articles free to all readers worldwide, many gold OA journals charge article (or author) processing charges (APCs). Those charges are eligible for reimbursement through the UCSB Open Access Publishing Fund.

Guidelines for the OA Publishing Fund

Who is eligible?

Any UCSB employee or currently-enrolled student who is a corresponding author and who has recently had an article or conference paper accepted for publication in an OA journal, is eligible to apply for reimbursement of an APC. If the corresponding author is no longer affiliated with UCSB at the time of the paper’s acceptance, another UCSB author may be reimbursed for the APC. Authors will not be reimbursed for articles or conference papers that have been previously published.

What publication venues are eligible?

The publication venue must be a gold open access journal or conference proceeding. Publications must be made available free of charge at the initial publication time, without embargo periods. Journals with a hybrid model (i.e. subscription journals with optional open access at the article level) are not eligible; however, the final author version of articles and papers published in hybrid journals and proceedings may be uploaded to eScholarship.

To be eligible for reimbursement by the UCSB OA Fund, an article or conference paper must be published in a journal that meets these additional requirements. Please review the publisher's FAQ and policy pages, when necessary:

  • The journal is listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals
  • The publisher is a member of the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association or adheres to its Code of Conduct
  • The journal makes articles open access under a Creative Commons license
  • The journal has a publicly available article fee schedule independent of the author’s institution
  • The journal has a policy to waive or substantially reduce fees in case of economic hardship

What fees will the Fund reimburse?

The Fund will reimburse the full article processing charge (APC). Page charges will be supported by the Open Access Publishing Fund only if the article or conference paper is published in an eligible publication venue.

Is there a cap on reimbursement?

No, there is no cap.  The average gold journal APC is still well below $2000, and having no cap simplifies work for authors in making payments and obtaining reimbursements.

How do I apply, and when?

The Fund covers articles and conference papers accepted for publication in an eligible publication venue. Reimbursement or payment requests must be submitted within three months of publication.  Authors are responsible for providing the Library with invoicing details. Reimbursement options include direct reimbursement to an eligible author, interdepartmental transfer of funds, or direct billing by the publisher.

Note: Some publishers provide discounts to University of California authors. To ensure you are being billed the correct amount, consult the UC Publisher OA Agreements and Discounts.

What is Not Covered

Why aren’t articles in hybrid journals covered?

Under the hybrid model, subscription journals offer authors the option to pay an Article Processing Charge (APC) to make their article open access while the journal remains a subscription-access journal. Thus, publishers collect fees twice (“double-dipping”), once through library subscriptions and then again from author-paid APCs. Therefore, The hybrid model inhibits publishers' incentives to transition to a sustainable open access publishing model. The UC libraries are subsidizing APCs for hybrid open access if the publisher and UC have negotiated an “offset” deal or transformative agreement, whereby corresponding reductions in subscription charges offset any growth in open access publication fees. The UC libraries also provide APC support for hybrid open access through negotiated publishing discounts with select publishers.

What about monographs?

We recognize that there is interest among many faculty members in open access monograph publishing. The issues and economics associated with open access monographs publishing are quite different, however, than those for articles. Although the Fund is not providing subventions for the cost of open monograph publishing at this time, the Library will continue to explore the possibility of adding monographs to a future iteration of the Fund. The UCSB Library supports open access book publishing in some ways listed below.

Anticipated Demand

With the continued increase in high-quality OA journals and growing researcher interest in publishing open access, demand for the OA Fund has grown since the launch of the 2012-2016 pilot. For the fiscal year 2022-2023, 64 APCs totaling $167,864.33 were processed. We ask that authors with sufficient funding from grants or contracts not apply.  We encourage researchers to include a line item for open access publishing on future grant proposals.

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