UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) provides funding to support its open access policy.
If you are researcher funded by UKRI and expect to pay any costs to publish a research article, monograph, book chapter or edited collection, you should speak to your research organisation. They will give advice on open access funding available to you.
UKRI supports open access publication costs for research articles subject to our open access policy through an open access block grant to research organisations.
You cannot usually claim these costs from your research grant.
Further information about open access block grants can be found below.
Monographs, book chapters and edited collections
If you will be publishing a monograph, book chapter or edited collection on or after 1 January 2024 it will need to be made open access. See our guidance on making your research publications open access.
UKRI is introducing a dedicated fund to support open access costs for outputs in scope of this new requirement. You will be able to submit an application for funding through your research organisation from Autumn 2023. For more information see implementing our open access policy. UKRI will publish final guidance about applying to the fund in Autumn 2023.
If you are currently applying for a research grant and expect to publish a monograph, book chapter or edited collection between 1 January 2024 and 31 December 2024, you may include open access costs in your grant application, if publication is expected to happen during the lifetime of your award. Otherwise, you should wait to apply to our dedicated open access fund launching in Autumn 2023.
If you are publishing a monograph, book chapter or edited collection before 1 January 2024, there is no requirement to publish open access. However, you may choose to include open access costs in your grant application.
Guidance on including costs in grant applications can be found in the terms and conditions and associated guidance, for UKRI full economic cost grants.
Block grants to support making research articles open access
Open access block grants are given to eligible UK-based research organisations that receive UKRI funding. They can be used to cover costs relating to research articles that enable research organisations to meet the aims of UKRI’s open access policy.
The amount an organisation receives is calculated using an algorithm that uses directly incurred and directly allocated staff costs on UKRI awards as a proxy for research volume. For administrative reasons, only organisations eligible to receive a block grant of £5,000 or more are offered awards. Block grants awarded from 2022 onwards can be found on Gateway to Research.
Research organisations can use the funding for a wide variety of activities that enable them to comply with the policy.
Further details about what the block grant can and cannot be used for are provided in the open access block grant terms and conditions and UKRI open access policy and supplementary frequently asked questions (FAQs).
2023 to 2024 block grants for research articles
The 2023 to 2024 block grants for research articles were issued to eligible research organisations in April 2023, with a start date of 1 April 2023.
2022 to 2023 block grants for research articles
Final Expenditure Statements for 2022 to 2023 block grants were issued to research organisations on 31 March 2023, with a latest return date of 30 June 2023.
Under UKRI’s open access policy, research organisations no longer need to submit a block grant spend returns form.
To seek assurance that the block grant has been spent in line with eligible costs, research organisations will be required to provide high-level information about their spend against the block grant through their Final Expenditure Statement (as is standard for grants), and the block grants will be part of Funding Assurance Reviews.
Research organisations will need to demonstrate they have the appropriate process in place to ensure the funding is used for its intended purpose. For example, this could include appropriate governance, as well as effective financial and risk management systems. Additional guidance can be found in the UKRI open access policy and supplementary frequently asked questions (FAQs).
We are carrying out a small pilot with a range of research organisations to better understand how an organisation can demonstrate that it has the appropriate processes in place and their spend is compliant with the terms and conditions of the open access block grant. The pilot will help inform how the open access block grant will be integrated into UKRI’s existing funding assurance programme.
We are developing the details of the funding assurance process as part of our wider work on monitoring and evaluation of the policy. See implementing our open access policy.
Ask a question about UKRI open access funding
Check for an existing answer in the UKRI open access policy and supplementary FAQs.