Wellcome Trust Open Access Policy 2021

Wellcome Trust will implement a new Open Access policy on 1 January 2021.  The policy will apply to all original, peer reviewed research articles that acknowledge Wellcome Trust funding and are submitted for publication from 1 January 2021.


Publication Costs

Wellcome Trust will continue to support article processing charges (APCs) for open access journals that are indexed by the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) and comply with the requirements set out by Coalition S.  Payment of APCs must be taken from the Wellcome Trust Open Access block grant.

After 1 January 2021, Wellcome Trust will no longer support open access publication in subscription journals and applicants will not be permitted to include this cost in grant applications.  However, from 1 January 2021 until 31 December 2024, authors will able to publish open access in subscription journals if they are part of an approved transformative open access agreement.

Wellcome Trust will no longer pay for non-open access costs, e.g. colour or page charges.


PubMed Central and Europe PMC

All research articles must be made freely available in PubMed Central and Europe PMC by the final publication date and must be published under a Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY).  Authors can publish under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerviatives licence (CC BY-ND) with the agreement of Wellcome Trust.

This requirement can be satisfied by archiving a copy of the author accepted manuscript in PubMed Central and Europe PMC with a CC BY licence and without an embargo.



Authors are strongly encouraged to upload preprints (i.e. the non-peer reviewed, submitted version) in an online platform that is indexed in Europe PMC and under a CC BY licence.

Where a preprint has a significant benefit to public health, uploading to an online platform is required.



All research articles supported by Wellcome Trust must include a statement that explains how others can access any data, software, or materials that underpin the research.


New Conditions on Research Grants

Wellcome Trust grants will include a condition that grantholders automatically apply a CC BY licence to all author accepted manuscripts that report original research.

Research articles submitted for publication must include an approved statement acknowledging Wellcome Trust funding

Authors or their institutions must retain copyright and retain rights necessary to make all research articles immediately available under a CC BY licence.



The following sanctions may be applied for non-compliance:

  1. Wellcome Trust will not accept new grant applications.
  2. Suspension of funding in extreme cases.



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