Open Access : Open Access books

Introduction to open access publishing and how to find open access resources

Books about open access

Knowledge Unlatched

Knowledge Unlatched is a project that allows multiple libraries to share the cost of Open Access publishing. This has the benefit of making the research freely available to use and share, whilst also bringing down costs.


All the Knowledge Unlatched ebooks are available through our library catalogue.

Search for Open Access books

See a list of open access books published by Open Book Publishers, Open Humanities Press and others.

Search the OAPEN Online Library: The OAPEN Library contains the full text of peer reviewed OA books which are 'free to read' online.

Search for open access books below in the Directory of Open Access Books. DOAB is a discovery services that points to OA books that can be found elsewhere. All books listed in DOAB have a full OA licence, making them 'free to share'.


About OA book publishing

OA monograph publishing

While journals have led the way in Open Access publishing, there have been considerable developments recently in the area of Open Access monographs and textbooks. Read more about the Open Access monograph publishing landscape, significant publishing activities, and insights into the transition to open access for academic books.

There are many different business models available to allow books to be produced as Open Access. For example: dual editions, where the publisher gets income from print formats while providing free online versions; subsidies from institutions or research organisations; academic collaboration and University presses, value-added services; charging publication fees. See a list of models and examples in practice from the Open Access Directory.

OAPEN OA books toolkit

In September 2020, the OAPEN Foundation launched a new OA books toolkit for researchers and academic book authors. The toolkit covers specific topics related to open access books. Each article offers a quick and brief introduction to a particular aspect of open access book publishing. The toolkit also serves as a signposting tool: articles include a list of sources referenced, further reading and links to definitions of key terms. Access the toolkit via the OAPEN website.

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Information for authors

Researchers, particularly in the arts, humanities and social sciences, find that open access publishing can open up a wider readership and even increase print sales. Some publishers allow 'self-archiving' of monographs (depositing a version in a repository) - check your author agreement or ask your publisher if they will allow this to increase visibility.
Many research funders are committed to ensuring that the published outputs of their funded research are made freely available, so that this knowledge can be built on by the widest possible audience. The Wellcome Trust recognises that key research findings are published as scholarly monographs or book chapters, and believe that the visibility and impact of these research outputs should be maximised. For this reason, their open access policy now extends to monographs and book chapters. See the Wellcome Trust's Guide to open access for monographs and book chapters.

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Projects and recent developments

Publishers of OA books

Here is a small selection of publishers with open access titles:

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