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Open Access and Depositing your Research: REF 2021 and you

REF 2021 guidelines

To be eligible for submission in REF 2021, journal articles and conference proceedings (with ISSN) accepted for publication after 1 April 2016 must be made open access.

 In practice, this means the outputs must be deposited in an institutional repository (BURO) or subject repository within a three-month period from the point of acceptance for publication.

REF 2021 website

REF 2021: Guidance on submissions (2019/01)

REF 2021 Publications

REF 2021 FAQs


REF citation data provider

The UK’s four higher education (HE) funding bodies have awarded Clarivate Analytics’ Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) a contract to provide Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 assessment panels with citation information.

Here is a useful guide to using the Web of Science core collection, together with a video .

Eligibility for REF 2021

Depositing your manuscript in BRIAN, as soon as it is accepted, ensures that it will be eligible for submission to REF 2021.

REF policy requires that the full text of articles published in peer-reviewed journals, or conference papers with an ISSN, be made Open Access within three months of being accepted for publication. This may mean that manuscripts need to be put online before they are formally published.

The version to upload is the final accepted manuscript, after peer-review. This is generally before the publisher’s typesetting but camera ready and template versions may also acceptable.

The BURO Team will embargo these outputs, where appropriate, following publisher guidelines. The maximum embargo that can be applied to  open access REF outputs is 12 months for STEM subjects and 24 months for all other subjects. If a longer embargo is required by the publisher, then this will have to be dealt with as an exception.

Please contact the BURO Team with any queries.

How this affects you

Depositing in BRIAN for BURO

Take a look at the short video on depositing research in BURO through BRIAN.

This covers the various steps in the process and alerts you to what you need to get started.



Exceptions applicable in REF 2021

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