Open science – open access publishing and open data

The Academy of Finland is committed to promoting the principles and practices of open science to improve the quality, capacity for renewal and social impact of science. The goal is to make the outputs produced and used in research (especially publications, research data and methods) and their metadata quickly and widely available for reuse. Implementing the goals of open science is also part of the work to support responsible research. The principles of open science must be pursued with due attention to good scientific practice and law. The promotion of open science and research is part of the merits that demonstrate researchers’ expertise, which are taken into account in the review of funding applications.

We require that Academy-funded projects see to that the scientific publications in which the project’s results are published are open-access, and that the research data produced are made widely available. The degrees of data openness may justifiably vary, ranging from fully open to strictly confidential.

Scientific publications and research data produced with our funding or by using research infrastructures we fund must always indicate that the research has been conducted with funding from the Academy of Finland. Our grant number(s) must also be mentioned. If the publication or data are electronic, the grant number(s) must be included in the metadata.

Open access: the research plan includes a publication plan

The research plan of an application submitted to the Academy of Finland must include a publication plan that has been drafted considering the Academy’s open access requirement. The requirement particularly concerns peer-reviewed articles, but we also recommend open access for other types of publications.

Scientific articles can be published following either green, gold or hybrid open access.

If the project uses the gold publishing route, Academy funding can be used to cover research costs related to open access. Academy research funding may also be used to cover costs of a hybrid publication.

Green open access means that researchers publish their articles in traditional subscription-based scientific journals and store parallel copies of the articles in machine-readable format in online open access repositories or databases. The Academy allows for an embargo period following the practices of international funders. The embargo is usually no more than six months, except in the humanities and social sciences where it is no more than twelve months. We encourage researchers to store the final, peer-reviewed and edited version of their articles. If this is not possible due to the publishing contract, the articles may be stored as pre-print manuscripts.

Gold open access means that a publication is immediately provided in open access mode through a high-quality open access publication channel, that is, an open access journal. In this case, the publisher is responsible for providing the article in open access mode immediately. The publisher may charge an open access fee (article processing charge). This fee may be included in the research costs of the project.

Hybrid open access publishing is also allowed. This means that the author pays a fee (article processing charge) determined by the publisher to make the article freely available. Otherwise the journal is only available to readers who have paid a subscription fee. The Academy wants to emphasise that because it is expensive and liable to malpractice, hybrid open access is only a temporary solution and part of the transition towards full open access publishing.

The Academy is part of cOAlition S, an international consortium of research funders that promotes open access to research publications in accordance with the Plan S initiative. As of yet, the principles and practices of Plan S do not apply to calls that are currently open, but they are in the process of being implemented.

Open data: data management plan

We require that the principal investigators of Academy-funded research projects see to that the projects’ data are stored and made available through major national or international archives or storage services that are important for their research organisation or scientific field. The degrees of data openness may justifiably vary, ranging from fully open to strictly confidential. The research project concerned and the publisher of the data must ensure that publishing the data will not be in breach of the Finnish Act on the Openness of Government Activities, the Finnish Personal Data Act or the Finnish Copyright Act. When making data openly available, the parties involves must also consider licensing issues.

Research data must be made freely available as soon as possible after the research results have been published. Sites of research must therefore provide researchers with the necessary guidance and ensure that they have access to suitable storage infrastructure as early as possible.

If the research data cannot be made openly available, the metadata must be stored in a Finnish or international data finder.

The costs associated with storing and sharing research data and material are regarded as overheads for the project’s host organisation, but they may also be legitimately accepted as research costs to be covered with Academy research funding.

Data management, listing and archiving services are provided by, for instance:

When a researcher applies for Academy funding, they briefly describe the key data management issues at the application stage in section 4.3 of the application’s research plan (‘Open science’). The actual data management plan is submitted only after a positive financing decision and within eight weeks of the decision date. The funding is paid only after the data management plan has been submitted. Read more in the guidelines for the data management plan.

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