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Our policy on open access

We believe that free access to and unrestricted re-use of published research is the best way to share and build upon new knowledge and ideas.

We’re dedicated to improving the lives of patients with all types of blood cancer, including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. Our life-saving work is focused on finding causes, improving diagnosis and treatments, and running groundbreaking clinical trials for all blood cancer patients.

Getting the most out of our research

We want to get the most patient benefit out of the investments we make in research. We believe that free access to and unrestricted re-use of published research is the best way to share and build upon new knowledge and ideas. It'll allow our researchers to build communities and share understanding so we can drive smarter, faster diagnosis and inspire new treatments and better care.

Our approach

We:

  • Require electronic copies of any original research papers that have been accepted for publication in a peer reviewed journal, and that acknowledge our funding in whole or in part, to be made available through Europe PubMed Central (Europe PMC) as soon as possible and, in any event, within six months of the journal publisher's official date of final publication*.
  • Expect researchers we fund to select publishing routes that ensure the work is available immediately on publication in its final published form, wherever such options exist for their journal of choice and are compliant with our policy**.
  • Encourage – and where an open access article processing charge is paid to the publisher, require – authors and publishers to licence research papers using the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC-BY) so they may be freely copied and reused (for example, for text- and data-mining purposes or for creating a translation), providing that appropriate credit is given to the original authors.
  • Encourage researchers we fund to maximise the opportunities to make all their results accessible and available for free. This includes taking advantage of online open publishing platforms and repositories, and ensuring dissemination of negative or confirmatory results.
  • We maintain that it's the intrinsic merit of the work, and not the title of the journal in which an author's work is published, that should be considered when making funding decisions.

The Charity Open Access Fund

In October 2014, Blood Cancer UK joined a consortium of UK health research charities to form the Charity Open Access Fund (COAF), to provide funding to pay for immediate open access for eligible publications. The COAF partnership ended on 30 September 2020, with implementation of Wellcome's new Plan-S-aligned open access policy. We are currently reviewing our open access policy for peer-reviewed research publications to make sure it works for the breadth of Blood Cancer UK's grant portfolio and our stakeholder community. If you have queries in the meantime, contact [email protected]

More information

Our policy for providing support for open access publishing costs is currently under review. Please contact the research team ([email protected]) with any queries in the meantime.

* We became a member of  Europe PMC in May 2015. Europe PMC is an open science platform that enables access to a worldwide collection of life science publications and preprints from trusted sources. The Europe PMC plus manuscript submission system enables authors to self-archive manuscripts resulting from research funded by Blood Cancer UK.

** Researchers can find out which publishers support open access and are compliant with our current policy by referring to the SHERPA/FACT database.