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Funding of Article Processing Charges (APCs)

Many funding agencies explicitly allow the use of research grants for the payment of Article Processing Charges (APCs) to publish in open access journals. In addition, numerous institutes have created central funds to cover APCs.

Many institutes have established central funds to cover the APCs for open access:

  • Co-Action maintains a list of institutional publishing funds.
  • SPARC maintains a list of North American universities and university libraries that have created APC funds.
  • The Open Access Directory also features a list of institutional funds for open access publishing.

More and more research funders explicitly allow researchers to use their grants for paying APCs for publishing in open access journals:

  • Sherpa has a consolidated list of Research funders' open access policies by country.
  • In the United Kingdom:
    • The Wellcome Trust requires research to be open access and from 1 April 2017 publishers must comply with certain requirements. MDPI has registered as a compliant publisher.
    • Authors funded under any of the UK Research Councils (RCUK) can pay for APCs from their block grants for papers submitted for publication after 1 April 2013.
    • HEFCE’s policy is “that all research arising from HEFCE funding should be as widely and freely accessible as the available channels for dissemination permit”.
  • In the USA:
    • The NIH public access policy aims to ensure "the public has access to the published results of NIH funded research."
    • The OSTP policy on Open Access, outlined by Director John P. Holdren, is defined to ensure "results of federally funded scientific research are made available to and useful for the public, industry, and the scientific community. Such results include peer-reviewed publications and digital data [...]"
  • In Europe:
    • Authors that are funded by the European Commission FP7 program are eligible for reimbursement of the article processing charges. Details can be found in the FP7 model Grant Agreement.
    • Switzerland: Researchers receiving Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) funding can cover costs of publication in OA journals via the project budget.
    • Further: Open Access publications from research funding under Horizon 2020 will be mandatory, and expected to be effective as of 2014, thus allowing for the results of publicly funded research and innovation to be maximised.

Authors affiliated with an institute participating in our open access program receive discounts on APCs:

The MDPI Institutional Open Access Program (IOAP) provides discounts on the APCs to authors from participating institutes. During submission of an article, the author can select and confirm the affiliation directly in our online system. If a participant provides us with the IP range information of the institute, an automatic pre-selection can be made in the system.

The corresponding or leading authors of a paper must be associated with the listed institutes to benefit of the discount. The institute can decide if the APCs are to be paid centrally (central invoicing), or paid in full by the authors (non-central invoicing).

The full list of existing IOAP participants can be found here.

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