Westminster Higher Education Forum

Next steps for delivering open access in the UK

Morning, Tuesday, 5th November 2019

Central London


This seminar will address the next steps for delivering open access (OA) in the UK.

The conference is timed to provide an opportunity for stakeholders to discuss the new UKRI OA policy following its Open Access Review, as consultation on the proposals concludes.

Delegates will measure the effectiveness of the draft policy against the review objectives, which include:

  • Ensuring sustainable support for OA and improving value for money;
  • Creating a clear, joined-up policy across UKRI; and
  • Incentivising the development of new OA publishing models.

The conference also takes place in the broader international context of Plan S which seeks to make full and immediate OA a reality by 2021, launched by cOAlition S - a group of national research funders, including UKRI and foundations supported by the European Commission and the European Research Council.

We expect discussion on developing new models for open access publishing, including the use of incentives to promote the creation of new, diverse OA journals and targeting new journals at disciplines which need more OA publishing outlets.

The agenda looks at how the sector can ensure that academics and research funders are charged fair prices for making their research OA while also managing the variability in cost structures between high-impact journals and smaller-scale publications. It comes with growing calls for transparency regarding the costs of making publications OA, and following the publication of independent advice to the Government by Professor Adam Tickell which highlighted the rise in costs associated with Article Processing Charge (APC) payments, recommending that the sector should reassess its preference for Gold OA.

Delegates will consider issues surrounding the transition to full OA, including questions around how fast the sector can adapt to new OA rules. It follows the timeline for enforcing Plan S being pushed back by one year to 2021, following concerns raised by stakeholders during the cOAlition S consultation on their implementation guidance earlier this year. Sessions will also address the growing use of transformative agreements, which will be Plan S-compliant until 2024 and include both ‘read-and-publish’ and ‘publish-and-read’ deals, discussing their role in accelerating the transition to OA.

Further sessions address the challenges of making monographs OA, including issues around digital infrastructure and the difficulties of designing sustainable business models for publishing OA monographs, particularly for smaller publishers. Discussion will also examine the implications of the reliance of a number of Humanities and Social Sciences subjects on third-party permissions and ensuring that licensing arrangements properly protect work from being misrepresented or misused.

Keynote Speaker

Dr Jean-Claude Burgelman

Head of Unit, Open Science, DG RTD, European Commission

Keynote Speakers

Professor Duncan Wingham

Executive Champion for Open Research, UKRI and Executive Chair, Natural Environment Research Council

Dr Jean-Claude Burgelman

Head of Unit, Open Science, DG RTD, European Commission


Bill Hubbard

Deputy Head, Scholarly Communications Support and Director, Centre for Research Communications, Jisc

Professor Sarah Kember

Director, Goldsmiths Press and Professor of New Technologies of Communication, Goldsmiths, University of London

Senior speaker confirmed from Springer Nature

Roheena Anand

Publisher, Royal Society of Chemistry