The National Library – Coordinating Body for Open Access to Research Publications in Sweden

Government Directive

Since 2006 The National Library of Sweden has worked with advancing open access to scholarly output, in short meaning that research results should be freely available online for everyone to access without cost, and that the material is free to reuse.

At the beginning of 2017 the National Library of Sweden received an appropriation directive from the Swedish Government to act as a national coordinating body in the work towards a transition to open access to scholarly publications.

The National Library of Sweden shall coordinate the work on introducing principles to further the publication of peer-reviewed and scholarly open access publications. This coordinating work of introducing principles for open access publishing must take into account the principle set out in chapter 1, section 6 in the Higher Education Act (1992:1434) that research results may be freely published. The National Library will collaborate with the Swedish Research Council upon implementation of said assignment. (From the appropriation directive 2017)

An open access advisory group has been established within the Forum for National Library Collaboration and Development with representation from the Association of Swedish Higher Education (SUHF), the Swedish Research Council (VR), the Swedish Society for Humanities and Social Sciences (RJ), Young Academy of Sweden (SUA) and the Association of Swedish Special Libraries. Its role is to support the National Library as coordinating body for open access, with a focus on contributing to the open access studies initiated. The current chair is Astrid Söderbergh Widding, Vice-chancellor of Stockholm University. 


Beate Eellend, PhD, Coordinator
Phone: +46 (0)10 709 36 40

Ulf Kronman
Phone: +46 (0)10 709 36 32

Camilla Smith
Phone: +46 (0)10 709 36 44

Twitter: OpenAccess_se

Studies 2017–2019

In the Swedish Research Council's report "Proposal to National Guidelines for Open Access to Scientific Information", a number of obstacles to a transition to an open access publishing system were identified. On the basis of this report the National Library of Sweden initiates and coordinates the following studies concerning:

  • The current merit and resource allocation system versus incentives for open access
  • Funding for a transition from a subscription-based to an open access publishing system
  • Open access to scholarly monographs
  • Financial and technical support for converting peer-reviewed and scholarly journals from toll access to open access
  • Monitoring of compliance with open access policies and mandates

Five national working groups have been formed on the above topics, with stakeholder representation from Swedish funding agencies, HEIs and researchers.


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