The benefits of Open Access

Open Access has benefits for you beyond simply meeting HEFCE's requirements and any set by your funder.

The Benefits of Open Access, Copyright, Embargoes and Open Access to Data.

The benefits of Open Access

Anyone with an internet connection can read your research if it is Open Access. We help you increase readership, citations and reputation and lower barriers to collaboration and cross-disciplinary research.

Your work will be easier to find

We catalogue your work and pass rich bibliographic information to the general and specialist search engines and databases. This makes your work more prominent and easier to find.

Recent research finds a 15% increase in the reading of the journal copy of a research paper if it is also deposited with an institutional repository (PEER Usage Study Randomised controlled trial).

Lower barriers to reading

A potential reader won't be stopped because they or their institution doesn't have a subscription to the journal you are published in.

A potential collaborator won't be stopped by a paywall and need to pay to see your paper.

Not all universities, companies and independent researchers subscribe to all journals. Access to journals is a major barrier for people in developing countries. Making your research open access opens it up to readers in more places.

Best potential consequences of Open Access

Because your work will be easier to find and to browse and study, we hope this will lead to new researchers in your field being more likely to read your work and also to more cross-disciplinary work where a researcher may not already know the likely sources of the most important papers.

More discovery and reading should lead to more citations and mentions in the grey literature and to higher academic reputation and hence funding and perhaps attracting more collaborators in academia and industry.

Additionally there is a benefit to the research profile and recognition for the University of Leicester as well which benefits you by association.

In a wider sense, the open access movement aims to reduce friction that slows or limits research and teaching and to increase world knowledge.

The Graduate School site has more details on the benefits for etheses.


Your copyright

Rights granted to the LRA when you deposit with us are entirely non-exclusive. This means that you are free to publish your work in its present or future versions elsewhere, and indeed may be making an agreement with a journal to do so.

Others' copyright

In the UK an author automatically has copyright in what they write. Authors do not need to apply for or mark their work with the © mark to have their work copyrighted. In your thesis you may well want to quote material by other authors and as a result this material may well be subject to copyright.

Authors can assign their copyright to someone else, for example, a publisher. Ideas and facts are not copyrighted, but presentation of ideas and facts may be.  There may even be copyright in content, and also in format (typography).  The rule of thumb is, unless it says otherwise you must assume an item is copyrighted.

If the item, and this includes periodical articles, is from an EEA country, copyright in that item lasts until 70 years after the end of calendar year in which the author (or the last surviving author, if there is more than one author) dies.  If the item is published outside the EEA, it gets the same protection as it would get in its home country.

The Library runs regular workshops on dealing with copyright within your thesis.  A booklet that accompanied the latest sessions is available below.


If you or your funder require a delay before your research becomes visible to the world, we can easily ingest your work in LRA with an embargo period so it won't be seen until the agreed date.

What about data?

Within the next couple of years, funders will start to require a data plan and that the data underlying a publication will be available open access. We are currently running an open access data repository pilot to look into the issue.

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