We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more Skip to Main Content

NAR's Open Access Initiative

Overview of NAR's Open Access Model
Publication Charges
Funds to pay publication charges
NAR Institutional Membership Recommendation Form
NAR Author Loyalty Discount
Waiver Requests
NAR Open Access License Agreement
Author Self-Archiving/Public Access policy
Contact Us


The advent of online publication has greatly improved access to scientific content on a global scale. This has led to calls from the academic community for research to be made freely available online immediately upon publication, without the barrier of paid subscription to access.

In response to these calls, and following consultation with journal contributors, Oxford University Press and the Editors of Nucleic Acids Research (NAR) launched an Open Access initiative for NAR in 2005. This means that it is no longer necessary to hold a subscription in order to read current NAR content online.

There are substantial costs associated with publishing a high quality journal such as NAR, for example in the administration of the editorial process, production of the published version, and development of online functionality. Under a subscription-based model, these costs are primarily covered by charging libraries and individuals for access to the journal's content. Under NAR's Open Access model, we aim to cover the costs of publication primarily through a combination of author charges and institutional payments.

You can read more about OUP’s open access initiatives, including NAR, in the following article: Claire Bird (2008) Oxford Journals' adventures in open access, Learned Publishing, 21, 200–208 (for a copy of this article please email us at Open Access.)


NAR's Open Access Model combines a variety of funding sources, primarily author charges, institutional memberships and print subscriptions. All articles published in NAR are published under an Open Access model; however author publication charges vary depending on whether the Corresponding author's institution has NAR membership.

The current open access charges are:

Author charge (per article) Member institution - £710 / $1385 / €1065 (50% discount) Non-member institution - £1420 / $2770 / €2130.

For a comparison of journals publication charges please click here.

Under OUP's existing Developing Countries Initiative, authors based in Free Access countries will have the open access charged waived, and authors based in Reduced Access countries will be charged 50% of the regular open access fee.

2016 institutional price options:

1. Institutional membership of NAR. This secures substantially discounted publication charges for Corresponding authors based at the member institution (see above). Membership for 2016 is £2396 / $4793 / €3596.
2. Print subscription to NAR (£2979 / $5660 / €4235). The print-only option does not include NAR membership.

The Open Access charges outlined above will be applied to articles of up to nine published pages in length. Each page above nine incurs an additional charge of £100 / $195 / €150 per page. Colour figures are not subject to an additional charge, although the use of colour is subject to the Editor's discretion.

You can pay Open Access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post.

Orders from UK will be subject to a 20% VAT charge. For orders from the rest of the EU, we will assume that the service is provided for business purposes, please provide a VAT number for yourself or your institution and ensure you account for your own local VAT correctly.

NAR asks authors to state the source of funding used to pay the Open Access publication charge, after having a manuscript accepted. This provides transparency for readers, funding bodies, and the publisher. If appropriate the information will be added to the Acknowledgement section of the article. It is not compulsory to provide this information, but we encourage all authors to do so.


A growing number of funding bodies and institutions make funds available to authors specifically for the payment of open access publication charges. In many other cases, funders allow authors to include open access publication charges in their grant applications, or to use general grant funds to cover publication costs.

To our knowledge these funders and institutions have specific policies on open access publication, including the payment of publication charges. More information about funders can be found at: Sherpa and Eprints.


Corresponding authors from NAR institutional members receive discounted publication charges when publishing in NAR. NAR membership is different to an institutional subscription, so your institution can still have access to content without being a member. To find out whether your institution has an active NAR membership, please click the following link from an institutional computer - NAR Membership Test. If your institution doesn’t have an active NAR institutional membership, you can recommend one to your librarian by filling out an online NAR institutional membership recommendation form. This online form will send an email to your institution’s librarian with all the necessary information for becoming a NAR institutional member.


There is an Author Loyalty Discount open to authors submitting to NAR from non-member institutions. If you have a paper accepted to NAR, and complete the online payment process for your open access charge, you will be given a unique Author Loyalty Discount Code. If you then have another paper accepted within twelve months, you will be able to enter this code into the ‘Author Loyalty Discount’ box of the online payment system, and will receive a 50% discount on the full-price open access charge for your paper.

The conditions of this offer are:

•This only applies to authors paying the full Open Access Charge – not member institution or Developing Countries rates.
•The discount is non-transferable – the same corresponding author must be claiming the discount.
•The Author Loyalty Discount Code has to be redeemed within twelve months of its generation. For example, if the code is generated on 21/04/2007, it will need to be redeemed by 20/04/2008.
•Retrospective discount will not be offered – the Author Loyalty Discount Code must be entered at the point of paying the charge.
•The unique code cannot be re-supplied so please keep it safe ready for your next paper.
•When redeeming the Author Loyalty Discount Code you will not receive another Author Loyalty Discount Code.
•You can only receive an Author Loyalty Discount Code by paying the Open Access charges online using our Author Services site.


Under NAR’s full open access model the journal’s costs are covered primarily by author publication charges (rather than subscription fees). NAR has a small budget for waiving open access charges for authors in developing countries and others in genuine financial hardship. Funds for waivers are limited, however, as the journal would not be sustainable without income from author charges to cover its costs. The NAR Editors hope that contributors to NAR will support the journal’s open access model by paying the publication charges if they are able to do so.

In general, requests for waivers from authors with funding sources outlined in the 'Funds to pay publication charges' section above cannot be considered.

Authors wishing to submit a waiver request should email Jennifer.boyd@oup.com citing their reasons for requesting a waiver, after their manuscript has been accepted for publication. As outlined above, we have a special publication charge policy for authors from developing countries included in the OUP Developing Countries Initiative; for example, all Corresponding authors based in List A countries will automatically be eligible for a full waiver.


NAR authors are asked to sign an Open Access license agreement

which reflects the Open Access model outlined below.

Articles published under this NAROpen Access model are made freely available online immediately upon publication, as part of a long-term archive, without subscription barriers to access. For articles published under the NAROpen Access model we have chosen to give authors the choice of signing either a Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY) or a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial licence (CC BY-NC). Both of these licenses mean that users of NARarticles published under this Open Access model are entitled to use, reproduce, disseminate or display these articles provided that:

1. the original authorship is properly and fully attributed;
2. the journal and publisher are attributed as the original place of publication with correct citation details given;
3. if an original work is subsequently reproduced or disseminated not in its entirety but only in part or as a derivative work this is clearly indicated;

The Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial licence (CC BY-NC) additionally requires that no articles are reproduced for commercial purposes without the prior consent of OUP (see rights and permissions) and payment to OUP of any appropriate fee. Please click here for more information about open access licences at OUP.

In our 2004 author survey, we asked NAR users to tell us what criteria they felt were important for an Open Access model. Of the 1052 individuals who responded, 75% felt that the unrestricted right to re-use Open Access content for educational and research purposes was important. In contrast, 8% felt that unrestricted re-use by others for commercial purposes was important.

Under NAR's Open Access model, all users have unrestricted rights to re-use Open Access content for educational and research purposes; however, those wishing to re-use content for commercial purposes must continue to obtain permission from OUP as the original publisher, and pay the appropriate fee. We believe that this provision will have several benefits - OUP can continue to act as a central point of contact for commercial re-use requests and will seek to protect the original author and the journal from misuse of published content; revenue resulting from such permission requests will be used by NAR to supplement publication charges for authors, thus helping to keep these charges as low as possible; and OUP will be able to monitor commercial re-use that could directly harm the business interests of the journal.


All new NAR content is automatically deposited in PubMed Central and UK PubMed Central, and made freely available via these resources upon publication in the journal. This means that publishing in NAR is fully compliant with e.g. the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Public Access policy and the HHMI, UK MRC and Wellcome Trust policies on open access. Authors wishing to comply with these policies need not take further action.

For more information about NAR's policy, please visit our Author Self Archiving Policy page.


We would welcome any comments or questions you may have - please email us at Open Access.

This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

This PDF is available to Subscribers Only

View Article Abstract & Purchase Options

For full access to this pdf, sign in to an existing account, or purchase an annual subscription.

Subscribe Now