A first technical workshop on the EC/OpenAIRE Gold Open Access Pilot project was held on 9 April 2015 at the National Library of The Netherlands in The Hague. Participants included the institutions across Europe (see list below) that will work with LIBER, the project leader, during the Pilot kick-off stage.

This FP7 post-grant OA Pilot aims to set up a two pronged workflow for receiving and processing funding requests. These requests may come directly from researchers or via institutions. This meeting was held to discuss the ways institutions will work with LIBER and OpenAIRE in order to support the first stage of the initiative.

LIBER Gold s
Having institutions engaged in the early stages of the post-grant OA Pilot will allow their libraries and research offices to play a key role in 'training' researchers on post-grant OA funding workflows and providing them a useful and highly-valued service for navigating the landscape of diverse funder policies thay must meet.

Libraries and institutions involved in the Pilot kick-off stage can also spread news of the Pilot to other institutions in their countries (ideally teaming up with their National Open Access Desks for the purpose) and across Europe. The post-grant OA Pilot workshop to be held on 24 June at the 2015 LIBER Annual Conference will be a very useful example of this joint dissemination work, though this outreach strategy will start as early as mid-April at the CRIStin Spring Conference.

Sharing Funding Landscape Information

A highly-valued part of the session was devoted to sharing the very different funding landscapes across institutions and countries together with the institutional expertise and background in Open Access publishing and APC management. Attending institutions delivered brief presentations, which offered the chance to compare various institutional scenarios and to discuss opportunities for aligning practices in the field.

Numerous findings arose from these presentations, including the very strong differences in the funding landscape across countries – which is both a challenge and an opportunity for this EC post-grant OA Pilot. While most attending institutions came from countries where specific policies (and usually funding) are in place to support post-grant OA, such as the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, Austria or Norway, feedback was also collected from institutions in countries where the drive – and especially the funding – towards post-grant OA is much lower or even non-existent at the moment.

A demonstration was delivered for the service for centrally dealing with funding requests for OA publishing. Developed by ATHENA and the University of Athens and early tested by the University of Glasgow, this system will collect the publication metadata for every request together with the information about the payments. It will then produce reports on payments by institution, publisher, project or discipline.

Setting up the Service

Gold homepage2

The service (still to be launched) has been fitted with different roles, such as researcher, moderator, institutional library, publisher or project coordinator among others. Each of these profiles will have specific privileges: libraries, for example, will be able to view all funding requests submitted from the institution even if directly submitted by researchers without their involvement.
Institutions taking part in this post-grant OA Pilot kick-off stage are eligible for collecting €50,000 block grant transfers so that the Pilot will be run in a distributed way – both technically and economically – for these institutions. In this scenario, institutions will deal with the outreach and the support towards eligible researchers and will pay the invoices themselves relying on the agreements and discounts they may have in place with publishers. Where block grant transfer may pose administrative issues, institutions may also select a technically decentralized workflow for outreach and support but not for the funding, which will be centrally delivered by OpenAIRE upon invoice submission.

By making sure its working procedures are appropriately aligned across institutions in different countries, the post-grant OA Pilot will allow universities and research centres to implement the workflows and support their researchers regardless of whether or not they are based in a “lucky country” – as an event attendee dubbed those countries with available post-grant OA Funds and arising offsetting agreements with publishers.

Institutions/organisations attending this technical workshop:

LIBER (NL) – host
University College London (UK)
Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HU)
University of Glasgow (UK)
University of Oslo (NO)
University of Vienna (AT)
Uni Bielefeld (DE)
TU Delft (NL)
Spanish National Research Council (ES)
Radboud University/SURF (NL)
Universidade do Porto (PT)
University of Patras (GR)
OpenAIRE/University of Athens (GR)


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OpenAIRE has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under Grant Agreements No. 777541 and 101017452 (see all).

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