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Below are some answers to commonly asked questions about the policies, procedures and implications of Harvard's Open Access (OA) policy, as voted on by HKS Faculty on March 10, 2009. Included in the FAQ are steps that faculty authors need to take to ensure their scholarly articles, whether published, under contract, or under review, comply with the School's OA policy. For additional questions or information about Open Access at HKS, please contact email@example.com.
Below is the official text of the Open Access Policy, as adopted by the HKS Faculty:
Harvard Kennedy School of Government Open Access Policy
Voted March 10, 2009
The Faculty of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the following policy: Each Faculty member grants to the President and Fellows of Harvard College permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles. More specifically, each Faculty member grants to the President and Fellows a nonexclusive, irrevocable, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, and to authorize others to do the same, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit. The policy will apply to all scholarly articles authored or co-authored while the person is a member of the Faculty except for any articles completed before the adoption of this policy and any articles for which the Faculty member entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment agreement before the adoption of this policy. The Dean or the Dean’s designate will waive application of the license for a particular article upon express direction by a Faculty member.
Each Faculty member will provide an electronic copy of the author’s final version of each article at no charge to the appropriate representative of the Provost’s Office* in an appropriate format (such as PDF) specified by the Provost’s Office no later than the date of its publication. The Provost’s Office may make the article available to the public in an open-access repository.
The Office of the Dean will be responsible for interpreting this policy, resolving disputes concerning its interpretation and application, and recommending changes to the Faculty from time to time. The policy will be reviewed after three years and a report presented to the Faculty.
*HKS faculty should submit articles to the HKS Research Administration Office instead of the Provost’s Office, via the Faculty Research Connection's submit publication link.
No. The HKS OA policy applies only to scholarly articles. Books, book chapters, edited volumes, commissioned reports, and other publications may also be deposited in the University open access repository, called DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard) but are not required under the mandate.
Using terms from the Budapest Open Access Initiative, faculty’s scholarly articles are articles that describe the fruits of their research and that they give to the world for the sake of inquiry and knowledge without expectation of payment. Such articles are typically presented in peer-reviewed scholarly journals and conference proceedings.
Many of the written products of faculty effort are not encompassed under this notion of scholarly article: books, popular articles, commissioned articles, fiction and poetry, encyclopedia entries, ephemeral writings, lecture notes, lecture videos, or other copyrighted works. This is not to denigrate such writings. Rather, they are generated as part of separate publishing or distribution mechanisms that function in different ways and whose shortcomings, if any, the present policies do not and are not meant to address.
No. The Harvard Open Access policy is designed as an opt-out system: Faculty authors are expected to deposit relevant articles into the University’s open access repository unless the author requests a waiver for a specific published article. Waivers are automatically granted on an article by article basis. For more information on how to request a waiver, see: What if a journal publisher refuses to publish my article because of this prior license?
No. Faculty authors still retain ownership and complete control of the copyright in their writings, subject only to Harvard’s prior, nonexclusive license. You can exercise your copyrights in any way you see fit, including transferring them to a publisher if you so desire. (In that case, Harvard would still retain its license and the right to distribute the article from its repository.)
No. The policy applies only to articles published or under agreement after March 10, 2009. The policy also does not apply to any articles you publish after leaving Harvard.
Yes. Each joint author of an article holds copyright in the article and, individually, has the authority to grant Harvard a non-exclusive license.
If you are one of multiple authors of your article, you should inform your co-authors about the nonexclusive license in the article that you have granted Harvard under the Open Access Policy. If they object to the license, you can request a waiver for the article by contacting: firstname.lastname@example.org.
HKS faculty may comply with the OA policy by submitting the author’s final manuscript (i.e. post-peer-reviewed) of all published scholarly articles dated from March 10, 2009 to the present (and/or forthcoming) to the HKS Faculty Research Connection (FRC) via the Submit Publication button, selecting the “Academic Journal/Scholarly Article” radio button on the first submission page.
A copy of the article, with its corresponding metadata (e.g. journal name, publication date, key words), will then be deposited by designated HKS staff into the Harvard University Open Access repository, DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard). Articles will be archived in DASH in one of two ways:
1. full text pdf, citation and metadata publically accessible, or
2. citation and metadata publically accessible, with the pdf deposited “dark," meaning not publically accessible but stored for archival purposes.
An "author's final manuscript" is the last document that you send the publisher, after the completion of the peer review process, but prior to the final formatting for publication.
Even though this document might be almost identical to the published version of the paper, your manuscript is typically treated differently than the published version for purposes of licensing and copyright.
A final manuscript is sometimes referred to as a “post-print.” It shouldn’t be confused, however, with a “page proof.” Unlike a manuscript, the page proof is a document produced by a publisher for your review just prior to publication.
It depends on the publisher and its precedent working with Harvard authors. Some publishers may already be aware of the Harvard OA policy and will advise the author on what is required to enable an article's acceptance to their journal.
An author can attach an OA addendum to a publishing contract after the article is accepted to make a publisher aware of Harvard's policy. For more information, see: How do I request an OA author addendum?
The Research Administration Office can assist and advise on issues around journal archiving policies, author rights, and OA author addenda.
The Provost’s Office recommends that authors include an OA author addendum in any current or future publishing contracts, to make the publisher aware of Harvard’s non-exclusive copyright and to ensure there is no conflict with the publisher’s policy. However, exclusion of an addendum from a contract does not void Harvard’s pre-existing license to the work, though a waiver from the policy can be requested at any time by contacting email@example.com.
For information on how to request an author's addendum, please see: How do I request an author addendum?
Faculty authors may obtain an author addendum one of two ways:
1) By submitting an email request for a customized addendum to: firstname.lastname@example.org and providing the following information
2) By using the Office for Scholarly Communication’s online addendum generator (Harvard PIN log-in required), which will create a customized author addendum from the information entered into the above indicated fields.
An reference sample addendum is available here.
If a journal will not recognize Harvard’s prior license under OA, you can obtain a waiver from the policy. Waivers can be requested by emailing the Research Administration Office: email@example.com, and are automatically granted upon request. A dated pdf waiver confirmation, customized with the author, article and publisher information, will be sent within 24 hours of the request. Note: You may provide your publisher with your email request for a waiver as provisional confirmation that your article is exempted from the OA license, as waivers are automatically granted upon request.
Should I deposit my article in the Harvard OA repository even if I have obtained a waiver for it?
Yes. Even if your article cannot be made publicly available, you are encouraged to deposit a copy in the repository under the “metadata only” option, which stores a “dark” copy in the repository for archival purposes and provides bibliographic information that can be included in an online index of scholarly articles by Harvard faculty members. The bibliographic information will be made available for broad indexing by search engines, in order to increase awareness of your article.
In addition, your publisher’s agreement may provide, or you may be able to negotiate, sufficient rights to allow copies of your article to be made publicly available in the Harvard repository. The publisher may ask that certain conditions be met, some of which the repository can accommodate (for example, an embargo period during which the article will not be made publicly available). You can consult with the Research Administration Office for help in the process of working with publishers and addressing their specific concerns.
If you are submitting an article or other work that includes material protected by a third party’s copyright (such as an image or chart), you may need to have copyright permission to redistribute this material as part of your article.
If the fair use defense is applicable, you will not need to seek permission from the third party copyright holder. The Office of the General Counsel at Harvard provides information about fair use and related copyright law issues. If fair use does not apply for the use of this material, you will have to obtain appropriate permission from the third-party copyright holder to include the material in your article in all formats and media, including, without limitation, in publicly accessible electronic repositories.
If you cannot obtain the rights to distribute the third-party copyrighted material in the repository as part of your work, you can still deposit the article under the “metadata only” option.
Your article will also be subject to the NIH Public Access Policy if it is peer reviewed and arose, in whole or in part, from NIH-funded research and is accepted for publication on or after April 7, 2008.
Unlike the Open Access Policy, the NIH policy is mandatory and cannot be waived. As part of the University’s compliance strategy for the NIH policy, NIH-funded investigators will grant Harvard a limited, nonexclusive license to use the investigators’ articles to comply with the NIH policy, and to authorize NIH to use the articles and make them publicly available in accordance with the NIH policy. This is separate from the license granted under the Open Access Policy. The license granted to Harvard under the Open Access Policy includes rights sufficient to comply with the NIH policy, but also provides other nonexclusive rights that will enable Harvard and faculty authors to use their articles in additional ways—for example, including them in a Harvard repository.
Though you may elect to obtain a waiver of the Open Access Policy for an article, you must reserve rights sufficient to comply with the NIH policy when you enter into a publication agreement for the article. For more information on the NIH addendum and compliance with that policy, please see the NIH Public Access Policy.
Questions may be directed to Jody Blackwell in the Research Administration Office, or by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.