Open Access-Policy of the University of Innsbruck

I was just at an interesting presentation about University of Innsbruck open access publishing policies in which I learned some new things. Generally, there are two types of open access:

  • Gold – refers to articles in fully accessible open access journals = the best way in my opinion
  • Green – refers to self-archiving generally of the pre- or post-print in repositories = in which the publisher weirdly wishes to prevent re-using of its layout, but not your content
  • Hybrid – refers to subscription journals with open access to individual articles usually when a fee is paid to the publisher or journal by the author, the author’s organization, or the research funder = the way in which publishers reap double payment from the author and the subscriber

The information for our University is here: and the policy is:

The University of Innsbruck expressly supports open access publications and thus the free and sustainable approach to scientific knowledge. As a matter of social responsibility, open access facilitates the transfer of scientific findings into society. Furthermore, free access to scientific and scholarly publications enhances their visibility in the international scientific community and facilitates their long-term archiving and permanent citeability. For these reasons the University of Innsbruck signed the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities.

To this effect, the University of Innsbruck expects its members (in accordance with the University Act of 2002 §94) to deposit already published publications in the institutional repository of the University of Innsbruck – Open Access, after expiration of the adequate waiting periods („green road“). Any new work should be first published directly in open access journals or in the form of open access monographs, if appropriate journals or series with quality assurance procedures (e.g. peer review) can be found („golden road“).

Therefore, the University of Innsbruck expressly recommends to its members to reserve the contractual rights to any form of use of the open access publication, like especially the rights of reproduction and making the publication available online.

Furthermore, the University of Innsbruck advises its members to also free the access to their research data.

The University of Innsbruck assists its members in the realization of these recommendations through relevant information and advice from the coordination centre for open access at the Universitäts- and Landesbibliothek Tirol (University and State Library of Tyrol),

  • the institutional repository of the Universitäts- and Landesbibliothek Tirol (,
  • the university’s publisher innsbruck university press (iup),
  • the infrastructure provided by the iup and the ZID (information technology services of the University of Innsbruck) for the publishing of open access journals,
  • measures to provide research data,
  • a publication fund to finance author charges that may accrue during the publication, as well as
  • the change of journals published by members of the University of Innsbruck to open access. New establishments only receive financial support if published as open access journals with adequate quality assurance procedures.

Publications that were published through open access will from now on be specifically identified in the documentation of research performance.

We are encouraged to upload all student theses to the repository, as well as any of our publications that are not gold access, subject to the restrictions that can be looked up on the SHERPA/romeo database. Funding OA publications can get complicated: sometimes the project funder pays (like the FWF does), the University has a fund but also some publishers issue institutes a number of publication vouchers, and its worth checking if your publication is eligible for these support options. To be honest in my field I feel massively lucky that journals like The Cryosphere (and all the other Copernicus Journals) and Journal of Glaciology are Gold open access.

Other useful links:

And, as a follow up, here is an interesting related article from the Guardian newspaper: Is the staggeringly profitable business of scientific publishing bad for science?

About lindsey

Environmental scientist. I am glaciologist specialising in glacier-climate interactions to better understand the climate system. The point of this is to understand how glaciated envionments might change in the future - how the glaciers will respond and what the impact on associated water resources and hazard potential will be.
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