Institutional Repository > Open Access to Research

Open Access symbol

What is Open Access?

Open Access (OA) to research aims to provide free, online and unrestricted access
to scholarly research.

Open Access 101 from The Right to Research Coalition on Vimeo.

Why Open Access?

  • Creators of research such as universities have to pay for access to their research via serials subscriptions
  • Serials crisis – the cost of subscriptions has spiralled out of line with inflation
  • Scholarly literature is vast (approx. 24,000 journals) so no one institution could possibly subscribe to every journal
  • Support innovation as most small to medium enterprises can’t afford to access all the research publications in their area
  • Provide public access to publicly funded research
  • Open up research to a wider audience such as those in the developing world where subscriptions can be prohibitive

Routes to Open Access

  • Archive your publications in open access repositories such as CORA, the UCC institutional repository or disciplinary repositories such as ArXIV (Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Quantitative Biology, Quantitative Finance and Statistics) or RePEC (Research Papers in Economics)
  • Publish in open access journals. See the Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Review the open access options of the journal you publish with
  • ‘Authors pays model’ where the article is made permanently open access through the journal publisher’s website on payment of a fee by the author
  • Some publishers archive their journals in disciplinary repositories such as PubMed.
  • Some publishers employ a moving wall – after a certain length of time, they will make all of their archives available open access to all


Last updated: 17 August 2016