Open Access Fund

by Michael Ladisch – January 28, 2022

Advancing the Impact of UC Davis Research

UC Davis Library promotes broad public access to the scholarly work of the Davis campus community, and encourages Davis authors to participate in the wider dissemination, higher visibility, and accelerated discovery of knowledge that open access publishing offers.

In this Guide:

As one of three UC campus libraries offering Open Access Publishing Funds, the UC Davis Open Access Fund (UCD-OAF) is a Library reimbursement program that supports members of the UC Davis academic community who want to make their journal articles or book chapters free to all readers immediately upon publication. 

Begun in October 2012 as a pilot, with initial funding from the California Digital Library (CDL), UCD-OAF subsidizes open access publishing charges for researchers when funds are otherwise unavailable.* The UC Davis Library continues to provide the funds in order to support UCD authors interested in reshaping models of scholarly publishing. The Library tracks how the funds are spent, and the success and sustainability of the fund continues to be evaluated. The chief goals include fostering greater dissemination of the work of University of California, Davis scholars, and encouraging author control of copyright.

*Note: Whether grant funds can be used to cover open access charges will vary by funding agency and grant. BioMed Central has compiled a partial list for funders of biomedical research. For other disciplines, check the policies of your granting organization. If in doubt, contact the granting organization. UCD researchers are encouraged to add open access fees or article process charges to their future grant proposals.

UC Davis Academic Senate, Academic Federation members, faculty, post-docs, residents, fellows, and graduate students who do not have grant funds that can be used for open access charges are eligible to apply.

The fund will reimburse authors up to $1000 per article for open access article processing charges (APCs), or for fees paid to publish open access book chapters.

All applicants must have:

  1. A valid 99-100 University Common Funds Account# at the time of application.
    If you do not, please get in touch with your Department Financial Contact.

All funded works must be:

  1. Published in full open access journals or in full open access books (Articles in full open access journals that are covered under one of the University of California open access agreements with academic publishers will not be supported by the UC Davis Open Access Fund.);
  2. Either have been 1) published no earlier than 12 months prior to, or 2) have an anticipated publication date within 6 months of, the UCD-OAF application date;
  3. Made freely available at the time of initial publication, with no embargo periods.

Prove of acceptance/publication must be provided (i.e. copy of acceptance letter/email or link to published full text).

*Note: These funds are not to cover color charges, page charges, illustration charges, or submission charges.

Full vs. Hybrid Open Access Journals
There are two types of open access journal publication models: full and hybrid. The Library’s UCD-OAF program only offers reimbursement for when you publish in full open access journals (journals in which all articles are published open access). We cannot reimburse you for a publication in a hybrid open access journal – where a publisher’s model is set up to charge libraries for a subscription to access its non-open access articles, and then requires the author to pay an APC on top of the fee libraries are made to pay in order to make your article open access. This is because, in most cases, publishers would be collecting twice and libraries would be paying twice: once for the subscription, and again for your publishing in the journal.

If you are unsure of whether a journal you are considering is full or hybrid, please contact us at

Publishing in Full vs. Hybrid Open Access Journals
As mentioned above, this fund is available for publishing in full open access journals only. If you want to publish open access in a hybrid journal, you will not be eligible for this fund. Fortunately, the UC has been able to negotiate discounts off of many APCs through our membership and license agreements – for both full and hybrid open access journals. See UC Publishing Discounts directly below.

UC Open Access Agreements
Articles published in a full open access journals that is covered under one of the UC open access agreements with publishers are not eligible for support through the UC Davis Open Access Fund.

UC Publishing Discounts
For more information please see our UC-wide list of publisher discounts.

Open access journals are peer-reviewed journals that provide free, online access to their articles. We encourage authors to choose full open access journals published by organizations who are members of the Open Access Scholarly Publishing Association and adhere to its code of conduct.

Full open access journals do not charge subscription fees to readers or libraries; rather, they cover costs through publication fees, institutional subsidies, endowments, or sponsorships. Some do not even charge author publication charges. To be eligible for the fund, your article must be published in a full open access journal.

Looking for an open access journal to publish in? Try these sites:

If you have a question about a journal or publisher, or need further assistance, please contact us at

Step 1

Fill out the initial application form, found here.
This form will allow us to make a preliminary determination regarding your eligibility and reply with a request for further materials as required.

*Note: To complete the online application, applicants must enter a valid 99-100 University Common Funds Account#. If you have any questions, please get in touch with your Department Financial Contact.

Step 2

Acceptance Letter or Link to full text
Once your application has been approved, we will send an email notification to you requesting a copy of the letter stating that your article has been accepted for publication. Alternatively, you can provide a link to the full text if available.

Step 3

Once your acceptance letter has been received by us, your funds will be disbursed via interdepartmental transfer, to the 99-100 University Common Funds Account# you provided in your application. Our financial department will use the financial contact you provided in your application form, and will process the transaction usually within 10-15 business days.

Q: Is this related to the Open Access Policy for the University of California?

No, this is unrelated. This Open Access (OA) Fund will pay the costs of publishing new research in open access journals, and involves funds provided by the UC Davis University Library. The Open Access Policy is focused on open access archiving in eScholarship regardless of place of publication.

Q: Where is the money for the fund coming from?

The funds are from the UC Davis Library. We chose to support this alternative funding model, expecting to learn valuable information about the costs associated with the journal Article Processing Charge (APC) financial model.

Q: I want to publish an open access book — can this fund help?

The library runs a different fund — the TOME (Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem) fund — to support OA monograph publishing with participating presses.

Open Access at UC Davis
To learn more click here.

Any other questions?
Feel free to reach out to us at

Open Access Explained!
A collaboration between Right to Research Coalition and PhD Comics