HEFCE Access Policy: The stick, the carrots and the bear trap

“After a one-year consultation, the four UK higher education funding bodies (HEFCE) have issued the first national policy to explicitly link public access with research evaluation. Any research article or conference proceeding accepted after 1st April 2016 that does not comply with their public access policy will be inadmissible to the UK Research Excellence Framework (REF), the system in the UK by which all government funded higher education institutions are assessed. The policy is a significant landmark in the global transition to Open Access and, in parallel with the UK Research Funders (RCUK) OA policy, will make research from the UK the most publicly available in the world….”