Libraries Provide Funding for Open Access Publishing

The Libraries have established a new fund to support open access publication of UMass Amherst peer-reviewed scholarship. A pilot program will make $25,000 in total available to UMass Amherst authors of articles and monographs.

The Supporting Open Access Research (SOAR) Fund underwrites reasonable publication charges for articles published in peer-reviewed journals that are openly accessible. Open access funding is an intervention into the economics of the scholarly communication system, internalizing the costs of access to research. It shifts the payment from the end user to an anticipated expense of disseminating the fruits of research.

Jay Schafer, director of Libraries, said, “Encouraging faculty to publish in high-quality, peer-reviewed open access publications is key to fighting the ever spiraling cost of commercial journals. We in the Libraries are excited by this opportunity to support faculty and the open access movement.”

Administration of SOAR funding will be facilitated by the Libraries on a first-come, first-served basis, contingent on meeting requirements. By supporting open access publication, the Libraries ensure the dissemination of and widespread access to publicly funded research. Enhancing access to publicly supported research also directly supports the public service mission and community engagement programs of UMass Amherst.

The SOAR Fund is calibrated to select for research publications that are ethical, of high scholarly caliber, and financially transparent, while supporting researchers who do not yet have their own funding. Research must be made immediately open access, not delayed by any embargoes, and must be published only in wholly open access journals or monographs, not “hybrid” fee-based journals.

Each publication will be included in the ScholarWorks repository, ensuring its long-term preservation and access.

For more information and to apply for funding, visit

The fund is debuting in time for Open Access Week 2014, when the Libraries celebrate the growth of open access. For the schedule, visit