Open Access


Open Access Overview by Peter Suber

An excellent introduction to open access by one of the foremost proponents of this movement.

Timeline of the Open Access Movement

An extensive timeline highlighting the major events in the open access movement from 1966 to the present.

Open Access Publishing and Citation Archives: Background and Controversy by Genevieve J Knezo

Congressional Research Service report for Congress outlining the major issues relating to open access publishing.

Institutional Repositories, Tout de Suite by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

An introduction to institutional repositories with links to related resources.

Self-Archiving FAQ

Extensive coverage of all aspects of self-archiving including definitions, copyright issues, peer review, publisher policies, and preservation of material.

Directories and Repositories

Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

Provides access to free, full-text, peer-reviewed articles from over 4,000 journals.

DOAB: Directory of Open Access Books

Over 1500 peer reviewed books available from 54 publishers.

Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR)

Lists hundreds of repositories from around the world and tracks their growth. One can search the contents of the repositories as well as search by country, software type, and content type.

OpenDOAR: Directory of Open Access Respositories

Presents a listing of academic open access repositories. Can search by name, location, subject area, content type, and repository type. It is also possible to search the contents of the repositories.


A union catalog of academic digital resources. Includes over 23 million text, image, audio, and video records.


An independent publisher committed to providing immediate open access to research articles in over 200 peer-reviewed biomedical journals.

PubMed Central

U.S. National Institutes of Health free digital archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature.

HighWire Press: Free Online Full-text Articles

Directory of journals published by High Wire Press (Stanford University) that offer full or partial access to articles. Over a million free full-text articles are presently available.

Free Medical Journals

Articles from a large number of journals are available with some date restrictions.

E-Print Network (U.S. Department of Energy)

Provides access to numerous e-print repositories through a single search engine. Subject areas covered include biology and medicine, engineering, environmental sciences, mathematics, physics, and other disciplines relevant to the Department of Energy.

Contains over 900,000 e-prints in the fields of physics, mathematics, computer science, quantitative biology, statistics, and non-linear science. Maintained by Cornell University.

ROARMAP (Registry of Open Access Repository Material Archiving Policies)

Tracks the growth of institutional self-archiving policies.

Bibliographies, Blogs, Wikis

Digital Scholarship

Includes a number of bibliographies related to open access and scholarly communication as well as several weblogs that provide current news and commentary. The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog provides references to new publications including books, journal articles, technical reports, and white papers.

Open Access Directory

The goal of this wiki is to bring together many open access related lists and allow registered users to add to the lists, make corrections, and propose new lists. Includes blogs, discussion forums, disciplinary repositories, open source software, statements, etc. The site is hosted by Simmons College.

The Effect of Open Access and Downloads (‘Hits’) on Citation Impact: A Bibliography of Studies

An up-to-date bibliography of research studies on open access and citation impact. Recent studies indicate that open access increases impact.


Scholarly Publishing & Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC)

Developed by the Association of Research Libraries, SPARC is an international alliance of almost 800 academic and research libraries. One of the main goals of the organization is to stimulate new models of scholarly publishing that expand the dissemination of scholarly research and reduce financial pressures on libraries. The organization’s website provides important information about the open access movement and has links to related web sites.

Creative Commons

A non-profit organization that enables people to license the material they wish to publish while keeping the copyright and choosing the restrictions they want to place on the copying and redistribution of those works.

Open Archives Initiative

Develops and promotes interoperability standards for the dissemination of content. OAI has its roots in the open access and institutional repository movement.

Public Library of Science (PLoS)

Publishes a number of open access journals and is an important advocate of open access.


Sherpa/RoMeo (Publisher Copyright Policies and Self-Archiving)

Provides a summary of the copyright policies of numerous publishers and categorizes them in terms of restrictions related to self-archiving.

SPARC (Resources for Authors)

The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition website has several publications related to copyright and author rights. These are free and can be downloaded. There are also links to other related resources.


Budapest Open Access Initiative

This initiative, the result of a meeting held in Budapest and published in 2002, is one of the first major statements advocating open access to scholarly literature.

Bethesda Statement on Open Access

Summarizes a meeting on open access held in Chevy Chase, Maryland in 2003. The goal was to stimulate discussion within the biomedical research community regarding open access to primary scientific literature.

Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities

This declaration is the result of a conference held in Berlin in 2003 and signed by major European research institutions.

Washington DC Principles for Free Access to Science

A statement from scholarly, not-for-profit publishers regarding open access to scholarly literature.

Salvador Declaration on Open Access: The Developing World Perspective

An international seminar on open access for developing countries, held in Brazil in 2005, issued this declaration.


National Institutes of Health Public Access Policy

Requires scholars who have received NIH funding for their research to deposit the final, peer-reviewed manuscripts into PubMed Central upon final acceptance for publication. Must be made publicly available within 12 months of publication.

Executive office of the President. Office of Science and Technology Policy

Directive of February 22, 2013 related to expanding public access to the results of publicly funded research.

Harvard University Faculty of Arts and Sciences Open Access Policy

The policy, approved by the faculty of Arts and Sciences in Februrary, 2008, gives the university a worldwide license to make freely available the scholarly papers of its Arts and Sciences faculty. The papers will be housed in a digital repository managed by the university.

Wellcome Trust Position Statement in Support of Open and Unrestricted Access to Published Research

Wellcome is a major independent organization in the U.K. that funds research with the aim of improving human and animal health. It requires that any paper funded by the organization and accepted for publication by a peer-reviewed journal be deposited in PubMedCentral or UK PubMed Central and made available within six months of publication.

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

CIHR will require researchers who receive funding from the organization to make their original research papers freely available online within six months of publication.

European Research Council

Requires that all peer-reviewed publications from ERC- funded research projects be deposited in a respository and made “open access” within six months of publication.

Sherpa-Juliet- Research Funders’ Open Access Policies

Lists the open access policies of various research funders. Includes funders from the UK, Europe, United States, Canada, and Australia.

Boston University and Open Access


Contains resources from a number of BU schools and colleges.

Digital Initiatives & Open Access

Provides information on many aspects of open access and digital preservation including copyright issues, funding mandates, and licensing. Also links to news items, blogs, and suggested readings.

Boston Library Consortium Partners With Open Content Alliance to Provide Public Access to Digitized Books

Announcement that the Boston Library Consortium will partner with the Open Content Alliance to build a freely accessible library of digital materials from all 19 member institutions, including BU.

Librarians at the Gate

Interview with Robert Hudson, Mugar Library Director, regarding participation in the Open Content Alliance.

Open Content Alliance

Lists all the contributors to the alliance, including the BLC.

Who Owns An Idea?

Barbara Millen, School of Medicine professor and Chair of the Faculty Council’s Committee on Research Activities, Libraries, and Support Services, argues for an open access archive of BU scholarship.

University Council Approves Open Access Plan

BU Today article on University Council vote (Feb. 11, 2009) to support an open access system at Boston University.

Scholarship, Libraries, and Open Access Archiving Initiative

The University Council document supporting open access.