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Policy: Open Access


To set out the University policy to enable open access to knowledge created by members of the University.


The Australian National University is a research-intensive, research-led university. Our commitment to the dissemination of research findings is essential both to differentiate the University’s research excellence and support national and international research excellence.

Scholarly research is the university’s major goals, contributing to new knowledge around the globe and benefiting the nation. The open exchange of information is a bedrock academic value, one that is supported by our approach to the dissemination of the outputs of scholarship and research. The university is committed to making these outputs available online and world-wide, free of charge and free of most other access restrictions.

The University acknowledges that researchers take into account a wide range of factors in deciding on the best outlets for publications arising from their research and teaching.

Open access increases the reach and benefit of research and education to society by facilitating the wide dissemination of knowledge including original research results, scholarly articles, source materials, digital representations of pictorial and graphic materials, and scholarly multimedia materials.

The policy supports the ARC Open Access Policy and the NHMRC's Open Access Policy and allows the University to adhere to open access policies of state, national and international granting bodies and to support the global infrastructure of open access research.

University repositories will contain research outputs that are made available via open access as well as research outputs that will not be immediately available to the public.


This Policy applies across the University.


Author accepted manuscript (AAM) or post-print version means the final, peer reviewed, corrected version of the paper sent by the author(s) for publication.

Education materials means all materials produced by staff in the course of, or for use in, teaching at the University that are intended to be made available to all students in a course (for example, lecture notes and material, syllabi, handouts, study guides, course software and assessment materials), and that are not private or confidential. Education materials could include de-identified student exemplar assessment submissions (that have the student’s approval to be shared). Creative Commons licence may apply to some or all of these materials.

Open access means that materials are freely and permanently available in a digital format, according to principles broadly supported by the academic community for the promotion of knowledge.

Open Research is the name of the ANU open access repository.

Preprint is a draft of a publication which has not yet been peer reviewed for formal publication

Published version also referred to as Version of Record (VoR) is the final typeset and edited version of the journal article that has been made available by the publisher

Research repository means the University’s online location for collecting, maintaining and disseminating the scholarly output of the University.

Policy statement

Research Outputs

  1. The University requires a copy of the following research outputs to be deposited in the University research repository:
  1. Journal and conference publications, technical reports and other original, substantial works – within 3 months or as promptly as possible after publication
  2. Open access monographs – within 3 months or as promptly as possible after publication
  3. Non-open access monographs – where they will be openly accessible within 5 years
  4. All publications from research funded by organisations that require openly access research outputs – within the timeframe of the organisations policy
  5. Non-traditional research outputs (NTRos) such as creative works, working/technical papers, conference posters and presentations
  6. Higher Degree by Research (HDR) programs Master of Philosophy, Professional Doctorate, or Doctor of Philosophy student theses) – immediately upon completion (noting automated input from the HDR Examination and Thesis System)
  7. Honours theses receiving a when approved by the Head of School and copyright permissions are achieved.
  1. Where it is not possible to include the published or author accepted version of the research output metadata should be added to the research repository with a link to the openly accessible version on the publisher’s or another website.
  2. Access through the research repository will be consistent with access conditions for the version stored in the repository. The Author accepted manuscript (AAM) can generally be made accessible via open access immediately, or after a short embargo period. The published version will be made openly accessible in accordance with the publisher agreement.
  3. The University may, pursuant to the Intellectual Property Policy, provide access to research outputs deposited in the University research repository.
  4. Research outputs may be embargoed from open access dissemination by ANU for a finite period of time, based on commercial or cultural sensitivities, contractual obligations by the appropriate delegate.
  5. Where Research Student theses include confidential sections or appendices, the entire thesis will be made available, except for any section subject to an embargo as outlined in section 4.
  6. The University does not support the payment of article processing fees (APCs) or ‘hybrid’ fees (where an individual article is made available through payment of an article processing fee).

Education Materials

  1. In accordance with the University’s role in advancing and transmitting knowledge, educational materials will be made accessible to the widest audience for which they are appropriate.
  2. Educational materials deemed appropriate for broad release after consideration of a range of factors will be made accessible (open access, or to University staff and students only) according to the Education Materials Access Procedure.
  3. In making the decision above, some of the factors to be considered include (but are not limited to) privacy, confidentiality or legal obligations; the likely effect on learning or assessment outcomes; the sensitivity of materials; and the reputation of the University.
  4. The University requires open access publication of:
  1. Information on programs and courses for current and future students;
  2. Course outlines; and
  3. Public events and lectures

Research Data

  1. The University’s policy is that research data is made openly accessible by default unless restrictions to access are required, for example because of sensitivity of data or contractual requirements. The University aims to:
  1. safeguard data sharing and release in a consistent and appropriate way
  2. enhance the integrity of the data system
  3. promote sharing of research data
  4. ensure data for which access must be restricted is appropriately authorised
  5. support management of data through the data lifecycle
  1. Research data that cannot be made openly accessible should be recorded as far as possible as research outputs.
  2. Research data is supported through the creation of Data management plans. The Library provides the DMP Tool for one stop data management plans
  3. Research data management and storage is provided through a range of services including:
  1. NCI - National Computational Infrastructure
  2. Discipline based international and national repositories
  3. Purpose built solutions at the University including ANU Data Commons.

The University’s support for Open research

  1. The University recognises the increasing requirement for support to make research outputs openly accessible to meet funder requirements and the university’s strategic goals.
  2. The University supports researchers through:
  1. The University’s Press which is fully open access
  2. The OA research infrastructure including Open research, the university’s repository and data management repositories
  3. Provision of support, advice and guidance for researchers and educators appropriate to their discipline
  4. Ensuring long-term sustainability of OA materials and their continued accessibility
  5. Engaging with government and other organisations to ensure policy development and compliance with funder, government and societal expectations.


Printable version (PDF)
Title Open access
Document Type Policy
Document Number ANUP_008802
Purpose To set out the University's policy for enabling open access to knowledge created by members of the University.
Audience Staff- Academic
Category Academic
Topic/ SubTopic Research
Effective Date 30 Jul 2020
Next Review Date 30 Jul 2025
Responsible Officer: University Librarian and Director, Scholarly Information Services
Approved By: Academic Board
Contact Area Library, Archives and University Records
Authority: Archives Act 1983
Delegations 0

Information generated and received by ANU staff in the course of conducting business on behalf of ANU is a record and should be captured by an authorised recordkeeping system. To learn more about University records and recordkeeping practice at ANU, see ANU recordkeeping and Policy: Records and archives management.