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What is Open Access?

Open Access
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Open Access (OA) can be defined as the free provision of scientific documentation on the publically accessible Internet (Budapest Open Access Initiative).

Emerging in the 1990s, it was originally a response to the virtual monopoly of large publishing firms over publications from research and teaching.

A few goals of the Open-Access movement:

  • to offer access to science to everyone;
  • to make scientific publication more ethical;
  • to improve the dissemination of science and to advance it.
Nested Content

Advantages of Open Access:

  • researchers worldwide can take part in scientific development, regardless of their institution’s financial means;
  • the work of researchers and scientific output, across all sectors, is better disseminated and promoted;
  • the impact and number of article citations increases, thanks to the ease of access and heightened visibility;
  • institutions and their researchers are liberated from the large publishing firms’ hold over scientific literature;
  • new services and new collaborations based on scientific discovery are possible (SMEs, start-ups, etc.).
I love Open Access

More advantages of Open Access

Key notions

Publication: gold path and green path

Open-Access dissemination may follow two paths:

  • The green path consists of uploading a version of the published work to an open archive, or to a themed or institutional repository.
  • The gold path involves publishing in Open-Access journals.

Periodicals that are distributed with a subscription that offers the author the option of paying to make their article free to read are not Open Access! This type of practice should be avoided as much as possible.

At ULiège, priority is clearly given to the green path, i.e. uploading to the ORBi institutional repository, after acceptance/publication via traditional publishing routes.

On the other hand, the PoPuPS portal provides the infrastructure needed to publish via Open Access to periodicals that wish to shift to the gold path.

Publier en Open Access

Publishing under Open Access

Publishing fees (APC)

APC (Article Processing Charges) are a financial contribution that may be requested by publishing firms from the author or their institution, in order to process their article.

  • Open-Access periodicals do not often have publication fees. Only 30% request a financial contribution of a few hundred euros from the authors, depending on the periodical.
  • Some publishing firms offer Open-Access periodicals with exorbitant publishing fees (more than $500 per article). This approach is referred to as ‘unfair gold’.
  • Some paid periodicals offer the chance to distribute articles via open access by paying high additional fees (APC). This is not Open Access. These are hybrid publications; they are a trap that should be avoided as much as possible.

ULiège is currently gathering information on the APC paid by its researchers in order to take part in the Open APC project.

Open APC

Open APC

Creative Commons licences

Creative Commons licences allow authors to share their publications and define the re-use permitted, while still maintaining their rights.


Creative Commons

The different types of Creative Commons licences

Some key dates

Dates-clés de l'Open Access
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