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Category Research
Type Policy
Approved by Senate
Date Policy Took Effect 30 August 2017
Last approved revision 
Sponsor Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise)
Responsible officer Senior Research and Policy Analyst, Research and Enterprise


To articulate the University's commitment to making our scholarly outputs as widely accessible as possible, wherever possible and appropriate.

Organisational scope

Applies to all staff and students who produce scholarly outputs or other works with high potential for consumption and reuse by the public or other researchers. Predominantly this will apply to peer-reviewed research publications, particularly journal articles, but may extend to any element of the academic endeavour, including theses, books, book chapters, monographs, conference proceedings and other works, such as software, data, teaching resources, information sheets or other written outputs.


Academic Networking Sites
Commercial services designed for researchers to share research and interests, such as ResearchGate,, SSRN and the like.
Article Processing Charge (APC)
A fee paid to a publisher to ensure free access to a work.
Green Open Access (Green OA)
Where a version of a work is made freely available via an institutional research repository or a similar repository, such as a discipline-specific archive or pre-print server. Commonly the version of a work used in Green OA is a pre-publication version, such as either a first complete draft submitted for peer review (sometimes known as a 'pre-print') or a version that incorporates changes based on feedback from peer-reviewers (a 'post-print' or 'Author's Accepted Manuscript'). However, some publishers' policies allow the final version of record to be deposited, often after the observance of an embargo period.
Gold Open Access (Gold OA)
Where a work is made freely available immediately upon publication, often involving the payment of an APC by the author.
Hybrid Journal
A variant of Gold Open Access where the publisher of a subscription journal makes individual articles open access provided the author pays a fee (APC) to cover the cost of the publishing service. That article will be openly accessible but others in the same publication will not unless other authors also pay the APC.
Open Access (OA)
Open access scholarship is digital, online, free of charge to access, and free of most copyright, financial and technical barriers to access and reuse, provided proper attribution is given to the authors. It permits anyone to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to work, index it, parse it as data to software, or use it for any lawful purpose.


1. General principles

  1. The University recognises that open access serves both the public good, in line with Otago's commitment to social responsibility, and the University's interests in maximising the potential impact of our scholarship.
  2. Staff and students – especially those in disciplines with strong links to government agencies or the community – are encouraged to make University-generated research outputs, ideas and knowledge available, without barriers to their reuse. Open Access:
    1. ensures our work is accessible to all, including the public, other researchers, teachers, our various communities, and our iwi partners
    2. fosters the sharing and spread of knowledge and accelerates the progress of discovery
    3. facilitates access to research and other scholarly outputs for people we do research with or who wish to use our work in their own teaching and research without legal or technical barriers
    4. increases readership and citations.
  3. The University acknowledges that the New Zealand government has adopted NZGOAL, the New Zealand Government Open Access and Licensing Framework, based on similar principles and with similar stated aims.

2. Intellectual property

  1. In accordance with the University's Intellectual Property Rights Policy, staff who produce scholarly work own the copyright in work done in furtherance of their general employment obligations to teach and to undertake scholarly research. Similarly, in accordance with the University's Intellectual Property Rights of Graduate Research Students Policy, students who produce scholarly work own the copyright in work done during, and directly related to, their course of studies. While the Open Access policy does not affect this position, staff and students should ensure that where IP may have been generated, such results should not be disclosed through publication until such time as the IP has been suitably managed and protected through the appropriate University procedures.
  2. Contractual obligations, funder requirements or ethical considerations must also be considered and may preclude the release of certain work or information.

3. Open Access to University of Otago scholarship

  1. For the reasons outlined in General Principles above, the University strongly encourages staff and students, where possible and appropriate, and where IP, contractual or ethical issues have been managed and safeguarded, to
    1. publish or communicate their work in open access journals and other openly accessible forms
    2. prefer the following, in order of preference:
      1. free Gold Open Access venues for publication
      2. making works available via Green Open Access options, such as OUR Archive – the University's own repository – or through a discipline-specific repository such as PubMed or the Physics arXiv (Note: deposit in commercial Academic Networking Sites is discouraged, though staff and students who use such services are encouraged to use them to link to their research held in stable, non commercial repositories)
      3. paid Gold Open Access.
    3. retain author rights that facilitate (a) ii. 2.

Related policies, procedures and forms

Contact for further information

If you have any queries regarding the content of this policy or need further clarification, contact:

The Manager
Copyright & Open Access

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