Open Monographs

The benefits of Open Monographs

Making your research monograph available Open Access can have many benefits:

  • It can increase the reach of your research and help to boost the number of citations it receives, potentially leading to greater research impact. A recent report from Springer Nature found that Open Access books were downloaded on average ten times more than non-Open Access books, and were cited 2.4 times more. Additionally, the readership for Open Access books is more international.
  • Publishing a monograph Open Access will not necessarily decrease the number of sales. Conversely, the Open Access copy can help attract more readers and actually increase the number of print sales.
  • When you publish your monograph Open Access you as the author retain the copyright, not the publisher - giving you more control over how your book is used by others.

Open Monograph Business Models

There are several business models for making monographs available Open Access:

  • Book processing charges (BPCs): similar to APCs applied to Open Access journal articles, a BPC is charged by the publisher to make the monograph Open Access. These charges can range anywhere from £4,000 to £15,000 depending on the publisher.
  • Library consortiums or memberships: libraries pledge funds to make monographs Open Access retrospectively (such as with Knowledge Unlatched), or pay a membership to the publisher that covers the cost of Open Access (e.g. Open Book Publishers). The University of Liverpool Library participate in many of these schemes.
  • Institutionally subsidised university presses: some universities subsidise the publication of Open Access monographs through their university press.

Some publishers will also allow authors to make their monographs, or parts of their monographs, available via Green Open Access i.e. deposit them in the university repository where they can be accessed by everyone.

UKRI Open Access Policy

Monographs, book chapters and edited collections:

The UKRI Open Access Policy applies to long form publications published from 1 January 2024.

How to comply

Authors can comply with the policy in one of two ways: 

1) Publisher route

  • The final Version of Record (this is the final version with publisher branding and typesetting) is immediately available, and must be free to view and download via an online publication platform or publisher's website
  • With a Creative Commons Licence
  • No Embargo

2) Repository Route

Deposit the Author’s Accepted Manuscript (this is the final version with no publisher typesetting) in a subject or institutional repository such as Liverpool Elements within 12 months of publication.

Publisher route - UKRI open access book funding request

UKRI have provided a ring-fenced fund for open access book publishing costs for those taking the publisher route as mentioned above.

There is a two-stage process for requesting use of UKRI's book fund that the library will administer.

Stage 1: Funding request

Authors applying for funding should complete the UKRI Gold Open Access Book Request form. This should be completed BEFORE a publisher contract has been signed. UKRI will confirm whether a publication is eligible for use of their open access book funding. 

In order to be successful, Stage 1 applications will need to demonstrate a substantial link between the publication and UKRI research funding, as well as between the author and UKRI research funding.

Stage 2: Funding request

The library will notify UKRI that the book has been published and funds will be reimbursed by UKRI.

Summary of requirements:

  • Your final Version of Record must be immediately free to view and download via an online publication platform or publisher’s website with a creative commons licence and no embargo

OR

  • The Author’s Accepted Manuscript must be free to view and download via an institutional or subject repository within 12 months of publication

For either route, the following applies:

  • Images, illustrations, tables, and other supporting content should be included in the open access verison, where possible.
  • The open access version of your publication must have a Creative Commons licence, with a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence preferred, though not required. An Open Government Licence is also permitted. (This requirement does not apply to third party materials included in your publication).

Action for researchers to take at submission: 

  • Inform the publisher you wish to publish with that you are UKRI funded and will need to comply with their open access policy.
  • Acknowledge UKRI funding for your manuscript with the grant name and number. Further guidance is available from UKRI here.
  • Use a Creative Commons licence, with the CC BY preferred for maximum to maximise opportunities for sharing and reuse.

Answers to frequently asked questions can be found on our dedicated FAQs page. Full policy details can be found on UKRI's webpages.

Alternative Funding for Open Monographs

If your research has been externally funded, you should always check your funder’s requirements on Open Access. Some funders, such as the Wellcome Trust and the European Union, require you to make monographs Open Access. They will often allow you to build in costs for BPCs to your grant.

If your research has not been externally funded, or your funder does not provide funding, a small amount of institutional funding is available at Liverpool. To enquire about funding, please fill in the Open Access request form.

You should contact us as early as possible in the publishing process.

Trailblazers

Trailblazers is a new open access initiative for the rising stars of their disciplines. Built on collaboration and knowledge-sharing between the libraries of Lancaster University, University of Liverpool, University of Salford, and the distinguished publisher Liverpool University Press, Trailblazers combines OA publication, to maximise the opportunity for impact from early career research, with a series of author masterclasses, which will equip Early Career Researchers with the knowledge and skills to support the publication of their work throughout their careers.

Selected Early Career Researchers will experience a transparent publication process, undergoing proposal and manuscript peer review, editorial guidance from senior commissioning editors, as well as professional copy-editing, typesetting, and marketing, concluding in the publication of an open access edition of their work. A series of masterclasses by publishing and library professionals will cover everything from how to write a proposal and turn a dissertation into a book, right through to how to index and what alt-text means, plus invaluable guidance on marketing, library collection management, research metrics, and how an open access monograph will benefit your research career.

By sharing knowledge from the publisher and library perspectives, the trailblazing Early Career Researchers selected for this programme will have a unique opportunity to truly understand the publishing process, while at the same time reaching the widest possible audience for their work.

Submissions for the 2024 cohort have now closed as the submission deadline was 30th April 2024. If you are an Early Career Researcher at University of Liverpool, then please contact Martin Wolf, Head of Open Research (Martin.Wolf@liverpool.ac.uk) for more information.

Useful resources

Open Access Toolkit

Directory of Open Access Books

OAPEN

COPIM