Openness of Research Results

The scholarly publications produced at the University are made openly accessible because knowledge resulting from publicly funded research should be available to the scientific community and society at large. Research results are primarily published in high-quality scholarly publication channels.

The academic publications produced at the University of Helsinki, such as research publications and datasets, master’s theses, licentiate theses and doctoral dissertations, are published as open access. All academic publications produced at the University are self-archived in the University’s digital repository, Helda. Researchers may use library´s self-archiving service for depositing.

The University of Helsinki is committed to securing everyone equal access to open, research-based knowledge. The University promotes openness systematically, strategically and responsibly under all circumstances. Ethical and legal perspectives are taken into account when making datasets openly available.

Avoin tiede vahvistaa demokratiaa

Openness has always been part of responsible science and research. Research must be reproducible so that the accuracy and quality of research can be ensured. The procedures followed in open science build trust in science and boost its impact on society.

Researchers’ involvement in public discourse and the accessibility of research-based information lay a solid foundation for decision-making based on science and research. When research data is made openly accessible, research results become quickly available to other researchers, and resources can be used more efficiently. 

Where possible, the principles of open publishing also apply to academic monographs. Most book publishers now offer the option for monographs to be published as fully open.

In Helda, the University’s digital repository, entire monographs can be self-archived or republished with the permission of the copyright holders. Helda can be used to publish research reports, books and learning materials. If you wish to publish your work openly, please contact the Library at

Members of the University community can offer their manuscripts to Helsinki University Press (HUP), the University’s own open access scholarly publisher. HUP also offers other services, such as peer review and layout services. Further information is available on the HUP website.

Funders call for compliance with the practices of open science because science works best when research results are openly available to the academic community and overlapping efforts can be avoided. New innovations readily emerge when datasets can be openly reused. Paywalls slow down, or even prevent, the process of making research results available to researchers and society.

The open online accessibility of research publications is the best guarantee of the availability and reusability of research results. In this way, open access also supports the quality and impact of research. In addition, open access to research publications boosts their visibility and increases the number of citations by an average of 18% (e.g., Piwowar et al., 2018).

More information concerning funders´ policies in Open Access Guide for researchers.

More and more funders, including the Research Council of Finland and European research funders, expect the publications produced in projects they fund to be made openly accessible. For funding to be granted, applicants may be required to publish their research results as open access. In addition, the use of open publication channels must usually be indicated in the publication plan. Some funders require that researchers self-archive their publications in the organisation's open repository.

You can check research funders’ policies on self-archiving in the Sherpa Juliet service.

Green open access, also known as self-archiving, is sufficient for the Research Council of Finland (see point 2 below). In research projects funded by the Research Council of Finland, scholarly publications can be made openly accessible through the green, gold or hybrid model.

The Research Council of Finland requires that researchers and research projects funded by the RCF make research outputs wholly or partially produced with their funding available to the public immediately after publication. In the case of peer-reviewed articles, this can be achieved by:

  1. Publishing the article in a Plan-S-compliant scientific journal based on immediate open access.
  2. Depositing a parallel copy of the scientific publication (Version of Record) or an author accepted manuscript in a publication archive or database that supports immediate access and is in compliance with Plan S.

If the scientific journal or publication platform chosen by the authors of the articles does not indicate that it will accept immediate co-publishing of either version, the Academy encourages authors to propose to allow immediate co-publishing by means of a special clause in the publishing contract. If the publisher does not agree to immediate co-publishing, the article may be opened for co-publishing within the embargo period (maximum 12 months for humanities and social sciences, maximum 6 months for other disciplines).

The implementation of open access to peer-reviewed scientific articles will be monitored from the research reports. The publication data included in the final report must contain persistent identifiers, which help in confirming the open access.

If necessary, the Research Council of Finland will require that a peer-reviewed article published behind a paywall be made available in accordance with their practices guaranteeing open access to research publications.

Plan S is an open access initiative launched by the EU Commission and Science Europe. The goal of Plan S is to make all peer-reviewed scholarly publications funded by cOAlition S immediately accessible in open channels from 2021 onward. The requirements of Plan S will be taken into account in the funding applications of cOAlition S from 2021 onward, at the latest. cOAlition S updated the implementation guidelines for Plan S in March 2020. 

Open publishing can take place through an existing open publication channel or platform or by immediately self-archiving the publication (publisher’s PDF or AAM) in an open repository. Plan S also allows hybrid model publishing during the transition period that will run until the end of 2024. 

The Plan S scheme also takes a stand on licences and open publishing fees. According to the licence principles, authors or the organisations they represent retain the copyright to publications made available under an open CC BY licence. CC BY-SA and CC0 are mentioned as secondary licensing alternatives. In some cases, it might be possible to use a CC BY-ND licence. As for self-archiving, the CC BY licence would be required for the funding of organisations committed to Plan S.

The Research Council of Finland is committed to Plan S. For example, as of 1 January 2020, support for open access publishing will be granted as part of the overhead costs of research organisations.