Open Access books

Open Access Book Publishing Options 

Choosing the right venue is key to publishing your research and when it comes to open access (OA) book pulishing, there are a variety of options. 

Library Membership 

Libraries pay an annual membership fee to publishers to support the costs of making books open access e.g. Open Book Publishers.  

Book Processing Charges (BPCs) and Chapter Processing Charges (CPCs)

Publishers charge one-off payments to make a book or book chapter open access. These can be quite large e.g., £5,000-15,000 per whole book. Many commercial publishers offer this model now e.g. Bloomsbury

We have agreements with certain publishers which include discounts on BPCs and CPCs for OU authors. Currently this includes Bristol University Press/Policy Press (15% discount on BPCs and CPCs) and MDPI (10% discount on BPCs).

Green OA

Publisher allows authors to make their books, or parts of their books, available via an OA repository where they can be accessed openly. Please check with your publisher or contact our team mailbox if you want to find out about green open access options.


Publishers offer basic services for the work to be made available freely, but charge for additional features and functionality e.g., OpenEdition.   


Institutional presses that offer subsidised OA publication through their university press e.g. UCL Press. Member institution authors can benefit from fee waivers/discounts. 

Scottish University Press

The OU is a member of this initiative to create a new fully open access and non-profit publishing press owned and managed by Scotland’s University Libraries.  The Scottish University Press will provide a cost-effective route for open access book publishing for researchers.  Follow the Press on twitter @scotunipress  or view the introductory video on YouTube. 


Authors use independent services and technologies to publish their book openly.  

UKRI Open Access Policy 

UKRI have announced an Open Access policy for Books and Book Chapters that will come into effect for works published from the 1st of January 2024. From then on books and book chapters that acknowledge a UKRI grant must be made open access with a Creative Commons license (Preferably CC-BY, but other licenses are permitted) and with no more than a 12-month embargo. UKRI will provide a fund to cover open access fees associated with this.   

Please note: If you have signed an agreement with a publisher before 1/1/24 that prevents following this policy, UKRI have said that you do not need to follow their requirements.  

OAPEN Open Access

This page has provided a brief overview of funder requirements and the open access options available to you. For an in-depth look at open access books, you may find the OAPEN OA Books Toolkit useful.

Contact us

Library Research Support team