Voluntary Author Contributions

Some of our journals are open to accepting Voluntary Author Contributions (VACs) for the publication of an author's article. If you have submitted your article to a participating journal, or are thinking of doing so, the below information applies.

For authors who have access to institutional funds or grant funding earmarked for Open Access publication (via a research grant or through their institution's department or library)—and only those authors—we kindly ask if they can use those funds to cover the £450 VAC of their publication. If you do not know about your institution’s policy on open access funding, please contact your departmental/faculty administrators, grant officer, and institution library, as publication funds may be available to you.

The VAC is genuinely voluntary. Whether or not the author is able to contribute makes absolutely no difference to editorial decision-making on the submission. We intentionally use the term 'VAC' to sharply distinguish this from an Article Processing Charge (APC), a fee that is required for publication at most Gold Open Access journals. OLH journals are emphatically Diamond Open Access: we do not charge obligatory fees to either readers or authors, in the interest of scholarly equity. Publishing costs for all OLH journals are met via an international network of more than 350 universities, public libraries, organisations, library consortia and research funding bodies/councils such as the Dutch Research Council (NWO), the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). The VAC, if the author is able to make one, would cover publication costs (editorial processes; web hosting; indexing; marketing; archiving; DOI registration etc.) which in turn helps OLH's model to fund even more articles for publication. This approach maximises the potential readership of publications and helps our journals to be run in a sustainable way.

Authors are made aware of VACs at the point of submission, and an author may opt in to provide a VAC during the submissions process. Publishing has a cost, and while our publishing model is not contingent on authors or institutions paying that cost, we ask that authors check before submission whether there may be funding available to contribute on a voluntary basis to our operations via institutional or project-based funds. If the article is accepted into the journal, and the author has chosen to provide a VAC, an email will be sent to the author along with information on how a voluntary contribution can be arranged. If the author's VAC situation has changed in the process of acceptance through to publication, the author should contact Paula Clemente-Vega at paula.clementevega@bbk.ac.uk.

If your institution is not currently supporting OLH, we request that you ask your librarian to sign up. The OLH is extremely cost effective and is a not-for-profit charity. However, while we cannot function without financial support and we encourage universities to sign up, institutional commitment is not required to publish with us.