UKRI Open Access Block Grant

University policy for papers accepted for publication after 15th October 2018.

The UKRI Block Grant is not currently not sufficient to meet all of the requests for APC payments from potentially qualifying authors. As such the University will attempt to meet the UKRI expectations for research organisations by allocating funds in a transparent manner which will best achieve the aims of the UKRI Open Access policy.

Eligibility criteria for block grant

Applies to any requests received after 15th October 2018.

The UKRI/RCUK block grant is available to any University of Birmingham author in receipt of a qualifying research grant to pay Gold OA APCs for articles published in either:

  • a reputable Fully Open Access journal
  • a hybrid journal published by a University endorsed publishers (see UKRI UoB hybrid publisher list) which meet the requirements of the UKRI Open Access Policy

If you meet either of the above criteria

You may request to fund an APC from the UKRI central block grant via University APC request form. Requests will only be considered when submitted on this form by an author who is also an employee of the University of Birmingham.

  • For articles proposed for publication in Fully Open Access journals, confirmation of the availability of funding must be received from Library Services before the article is submitted to the journal
  • For articles proposed for publication in Hybrid Open Access journals, the article may be submitted for publication prior to contacting library services, but confirmation of the availability of funding must be received from Library Services before agreeing a Gold OA charge and requesting an invoice
What if my chosen journal is not on the endorsed publisher list or fully open access?

The UKRI Block Grant will be made available for publication in hybrid titles which are not on the University endorsed publisher list if they meet the compliance requirements of the UKRI Open Access Policy and either:

  • The paper is funded by the MRC and the journal does not allow a Green embargo shorter than 6 months (make your application via the University APC request form).
  • An exception request is submitted to library services on the Exception APC request form. This will be forwarded for approval to the relevant Director of Research or their proxy. Such approval is typically only given for papers of 4* quality which will also have significant impact beneficial to either the public good or reputation of the University of Birmingham, should immediate and wide-scale access be provided.


Additional conditions 

  1. The block grant is only available to cover APCs, any additional costs (page, colour charges) must be paid by the department. 
  2. You are not permitted to pay for an APC through your RCUK grant.
  3. If choosing 'gold' open access, the output should be published with a Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC-BY).
  4. On publication, you are encouraged by the University to deposit a copy of the final PDF of your 'gold' OA publication into University of Birmingham Research Archive (UBIRA), using PURE.

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