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Open Access Fund

The Northwestern Open Access Fund, provided by Northwestern University Libraries, supports Northwestern graduate and undergraduate student scholars who wish to make their journal articles or ebooks openly available immediately upon publication and to support gold open access publishers around the world. The gold open access journal or ebook model publishes all of a journal’s articles or the entire ebook as open access and allows for freely available access immediately upon publication.

Please note: Beginning in September 2023, Northwestern Libraries will shift support for Open Access publishing to institutional-level initiatives. The final day to apply for individual APCs through the Open Access Fund is July 31, 2023. Read more in this announcement.

Award eligibility and stipulations

The Fund will help cover article processing charges (APC) or ebook publication charges to publish as open access.

  1. Open to current graduate and undergraduate Northwestern students, as well as recent graduates up to six months post-graduation (Research must have been conducted while at Northwestern).
  2. Applicants must be the corresponding author on the publication.
  3. Journal must be Gold OA and that there be no embargo on any part of the published content.
  4. The funding is intended to pay for article processing costs or ebook publishing fees. It does not cover the costs for peripherals, such as images or color enhancement of images, or supplemental data storage or publication.
  5. There is a fiscal year limit of up to $3,500 per one single award per article or ebook with no claim to unspent funds from the single fiscal year award.
  6. Open access APC’s are not reimbursable to authors who have already paid the article publication charge.
  7. At publication, a copy must be deposited in Arch, Northwestern University Library’s institutional repository or with DigitalHub, Galter Health Sciences Library’s institutional repository.

Apply Here

Email any questions to Northwestern Open Access.

Frequently asked questions

What content types are eligible?

Articles submitted for publication in peer-reviewed open access journals, or ebooks published on open access platforms. If a submitted article or ebook is rejected by a publisher, the corresponding author must notify the Northwestern Open Access Fund so that reserved funds can be released for other authors, or for reapplication to the fund for submission to another publisher.

How can I make my research data and supplemental materials open access?

Northwestern researchers are encouraged to use Arch to make datasets, analysis code, documentation, and any other supporting information available open access. Arch is a self-service, open access repository that is free of charge to Northwestern University faculty, students, and research staff.

What constitutes an acceptable open-access journal?

Any peer-reviewed journal that is published in a fully open access format and meets at least one of the following criteria:
An ebook must be published in a fully open access format on a fully open access platform.

Are any access restrictions acceptable?

The fund cannot be used to support "hybrid" open access publishing, or to cover publishing fees where an embargo is required. The hybrid model is used to make individual articles available in journals that require paid subscriptions to access the remainder of articles.

Are there any additional requirements for authors who receive funding?

Authors must deposit a PDF copy of their article to Arch, a self-service, open access repository for research and data.

How are intramural collaborations handled?

If collaborating authors’ institutions have support for open access processing charges, the cost may be shared with one or more institutions. The authors are responsible for working with the publisher to receive split invoices for each institution to pay, the amount to be paid by the institutions being governed by their respective fund limits per award.

Who funds and administers the Northwestern Open Access Fund?

The fund is supported by the Northwestern University Libraries. The fund is administered by a group of scholarly communication experts in the libraries, and funds disbursed by the libraries' acquisitions department.