Publishing your research open access

One of the conditions for receiving a grant from us is that you comply with the Swedish Research Council’s guidelines for publication with open access. The guidelines apply for researchers receiving grants as from October 2022.

Your research results must be openly accessible

The publications that result from research that is wholly or partly funded by the Swedish Research Council shall be freely accessible to all, without delay. The requirement applies to all types of scientific publications, for example articles, monographs, books and book chapters.

The Swedish Research Council requires immediate open access on publication. This means that publication with open access shall occur at the same time as the research results are published in another format, for example in a subscription-based journal.

Guidelines for grants awarded before September 2022

Requirements for publication with open access for grants awarded as from January 2020 until the end of September 2022 Pdf, 157.4 kB.

For older grants, the terms and conditions linked to the grant decision apply (available in Prisma).

The additional cost may be added to the application

If you are applying for a grant from the Swedish Research Council, your application may include any additional cost for publication in a journal that publishes with open access, or a hybrid journal; that is, a traditional journal that offers open access in exchange for a fee to publish the article. The same applies for costs for publication with a publisher publishing with open access.

Publication shall be under a CC-BY licence

Publication shall be under a licence that allows others to partake of and use the research results.

The licence to be used is CC-BY, a standard licence that several international organisations recommend. The licence entails on the one hand that all who use, process or spread the research results must state the originator, and also that the researcher retains the right to spread their own research.

The CC licence also works for illustrations, but in some cases different licences may be needed for the text content and the image content. The Swedish Research Council accepts the publication licence CC BY NC ND for any illustrations with images that are protected by copyright. The condition of licensing with CC-BY need not cover materials (such as images, photographs etc) covered by the rights of another party.

Approved ways of publishing with open access

The Swedish Research Council approves the following types of publication:

Publication in a journal or on a platform with open access – there is a large number of journals that publish with open access, and also many ‘publication platforms’. A list of journals with open access is available in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).

Publication in hybrid format – a hybrid journal is a traditional subscription-based journal that offers publication with open access in exchange for a fee (see below about agreements with the large journal publishers). Many international publishers offer a corresponding service for books.

Self archiving in a freely accessible archive – nearly all Swedish higher education institutions have an open digital archive. When the article or book has been published in a journal or by a publisher, the researcher may save a copy in the higher education institution’s open archive. The copy saved must be a version with identical content to the original publication. The Swedish Research Council does not require the self archived article or book to have the same layout as the journal or the publisher.

There are agreements on open access with the major publishers of journals

Open access has been negotiated with the major publishers. This means that you do not have to pay an article processing charge (APC) to fulfil the Swedish Research Council’s requirement for open access when you publish articles in many of the journals. Publication is done under CC-BY licence according to most of the agreements, which complies with the Swedish Research Council’s requirements and terms and conditions,

Read more about the terms and conditions on the Swedish National Library’s website External link.

The research funders Swedish Research Council, Forte, Formas, and Vinnova have agreed to jointly cover publishing costs with open access publishers during 2024 and 2025. Agreements are signed with the publishers Frontiers, PLOS, MJS Publishing och Copernicus 1. Respective publishers have information about all participating organisations and manage the identification of authors/articles who are entitled to publish within the agreements. General rules regarding corresponding authorship and affiliation apply.

Since many publishers identify articles based on both stated affiliation and email domain, you should always use your organisation's email address when submitting a manuscript to a journal.

If you have questions about the agreements, you can contact your university library.

If you have questions

Most Swedish higher education institutions have databases and personnel who can provide both practical help and advice on issues relating to open access to scientific publications. Please contact your higher education institution for information on how to arrange publishing with open access.

If you have any questions about the principles or similar, then please contact us at the Swedish Research Council.

Read more about open access

National Library of Sweden’s website for open access (in Swedish) External link.

Kriterium – Portal for peer review and open access publishing of scientific books External link.

Why we require open access to scientific publications

The Swedish Research Council is driving the development towards open access to scientific publications together with other research funding bodies within and outside Sweden.

Reasons why we require open access:

  • We believe that everyone should have access to the results of research financed via public funds.
  • Research results that can be read free of charge on the internet also reach researchers outside the specific field.
  • People outside the research community have the opportunity to partake of scientific articles linked to their occupational activities.
  • Research published with open access spreads faster, and the articles are cited more often.




  1. Agreements completed with four publishers of open access journals

    Last autumn, the Swedish Research Council, Formas, Forte, and Vinnova made a focus decision to fund publishing using publishers that only produce journals with full open access. Agreements have now been entered into with four publishers.

  2. Open access to scientific publications

    The Swedish Research Council is driving the development towards open access to scientific publications together with other research funding bodies within and outside Sweden. One of the ways we do this is to establish guidelines for publication with o...

  3. Funders in joint open access initi­a­ti­ve

    The research funders Swedish Research Council, Forte, Formas, and Vinnova have made a strategic decision on a funding model to support publication with publishers that exclusively publish fully open access journals.