August 19, 2015
Senior Research Officers
at AAU and APLU Universities
RE: University Compliance with Federal Public Access Policies
As you are undoubtedly aware, in February 2013 Director Holdren of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) issued a Memorandum directing federal agencies with over $100M in annual R&D expenditures to develop plans to provide increased public access to the results of federally funded research. The OSTP policy requires that grant recipients whose research results are published in peer-reviewed journals submit the final, accepted manuscript of such articles to the federal granting agency or a designated repository upon acceptance of the article for publication or the final published version if approved by the publisher. The article is to be made freely, publicly available following an agency-determined embargo period, with agencies to date calling for a 12- month embargo period. While it has taken some time for those plans to be developed, many agencies now are implementing approved plans (see ARL list of agency plans below). This memorandum offers suggestions for immediate actions by universities to be fully prepared to meet the new requirements contained in the agency grant-funding policies that will result from implementation of these plans. Unless a university takes steps now to assure future public access, it may later find itself out of compliance with the terms of federal agency grants.