The University of Bristol and Open Access
: How are researchers supported post Finch Report?

    Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science (MSc)


    This research investigates how a research-intensive university supports researchers in their endeavour to communicate research findings through Open Access (OA) articles in scholarly publications post Finch Report (2012). It examines the culture of scholarly communications, the change in expectations regarding the availability of information in a technologically driven age, and the resulting paradigm shift regarding scholarly publications. This is set contextually against the culture and status of the University, and the Finch Report, whose impact affects how the University markets, manages, enables and assists publication in and access to research for Research Councils UK (RCUK) funded researchers. Current research in this area (Research Information Network, 2013) finds the lead responsibility for administering Article Processing Charge (APC) payments almost exclusively rests with libraries, reflecting past experience dealing with publishers, journal costs and sometimes, existing policies for Wellcome Trust block grants. However, this inserts the library into a private author/publisher relationship, presenting challenges for all parties. This research will examine communications with researchers, the library’s pre-existing infrastructure, and current procedures and policies for dealing with OA claims, comparing these against recommendations provided after the first year of RCUK’s OA policy. This will allow for measurement of existing arrangements efficacy in relation to academic cultural practices, establish Bristol’s success in its endeavour, and identify areas requiring additional provisions; the purpose is to maximise potential for supporting the University’s community of researchers equitably across the Schools, whilst considering the probability of successfully realising this with externally governed limitations, financial constraints and embedded cultural practices. There are benefits for the wider higher education community, as the research illustrates practices and problems encountered when administering large budgets and considerable research outputs post Finch report.
    Date of Award1 Jun 2015
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of the West of England
    SupervisorMatthews Paul (Supervisor)

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