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Open Access

For further information on licensing, copyright, reuse and deposition, please visit our Rights and permissions page.


Open Access policies

  • BiO is a fully ('gold') Open Access journal.
  • The costs of publication in BiO are covered by charging a fee (Article Processing Charge; APC) for each accepted Research or Methods & Techniques article (there is no charge to authors of invited Review-type articles).
  • All articles are published under the CC-BY licence.
  • BiO is compliant with Plan S.
  • BiO is a member of CHORUS - making the journal compliant with US public access mandates.
  • All articles are deposited into PMC and PubMed on behalf of authors.
  • BiO is transparent about its costs, APC pricing and publishing metrics.
  • Metadata describing the OA status and licence is embedded within the article.
  • Funders and other research supporters sometimes include funds for APC payment in their grants, but the author is responsible for ensuring the fee is paid.
  • Authors might be covered by an institutional Read & Publish Open Access agreement, meaning that they do not have to pay a (full) APC for publishing in BiO (see below).

Article Processing Charge (APC)

To provide Open Access, the costs of publication in BiO are covered by charging a subsidised fee for each accepted article. This Article Processing Charge is $1,995 per article (plus VAT if applicable). The true cost of publishing in BiO is higher, including costs relating to quality peer review; support for academic editors; plagiarism and image manipulation checks; text and figure checking; layout; and online hosting, dissemination and archiving.

APC fees are set in three currencies, US dollars, pound sterling and Euros, and do not follow the constantly changing exchange rate. This means that authors are not adversely affected by fluctuations in their local exchange rate.

Publication cannot proceed until payment has been received.

If you pay for Open Access publication and we fail to fulfil our Open Access commitments, an APC rebate is available – please contact the Editorial Office.


Waiver policies

BiO grants full APC waivers for corresponding authors based in low-income and lower-middle-income economies (as classified by the World Bank).

Authors who genuinely have no funds to cover APCs may also apply for a full or partial waiver on the basis of financial hardship. Requests for waivers from authors with research grants are unlikely to be approved, unless a strong case can be made as to why a grant cannot be used to cover publication costs.

The decision to publish a paper in BiO is wholly independent of payment or ability to pay, and is based solely on the validity and supportability of the work detailed in each manuscript. Editors and reviewers do not have access to information regarding authors' financial contributions.

Information about how to apply for a full or partial waiver is provided at acceptance. Authors will be sent a link to the RightsLink payment site, from where the waiver application form can be downloaded and then emailed to the office for review. This includes corresponding authors entitled to a waiver on the basis of country economy. Instructions for paying partial waivers are given on the payment site.

BiO is published by the not-for-profit publisher The Company of Biologists, a charitable organisation run by scientists to support the research community.


Waiver stats

In 2021, all applications for an APC waiver fitted the criteria for approval and were granted a full or partial waiver. This represented 9% of published research-type articles.

BiO waiver stats 2021


Institutional Read & Publish Open Access agreements

In addition to publishing fully Open Access journals such as BiO, The Company of Biologists has further embraced the move towards Open Access through Read & Publish agreements with institutional libraries and library consortia.

Corresponding authors at institutions with Read & Publish agreements can publish an uncapped number of Open Access Research Articles without paying the APC. Unlimited access to the Company’s subscription journals and their archives is also available to researchers at participating institutions.

From January 2022, institutions can choose to include three or five journals in their Read & Publish agreement:

  • Three-journal package - Development, Journal of Cell Science and Journal of Experimental Biology.
  • Five-journal package - Development, Journal of Cell Science and Journal of Experimental Biology plus DMM and Biology Open.
  • Corresponding authors can find out here whether their institution has a Read & Publish agreement that includes BiO (five-journal package).

    The University of California's ten campuses have a variation of our standard Read & Publish agreement - corresponding authors can find out more here.

    An APC payment link will be sent to the corresponding author at acceptance. Discounts or fee-free publication will be approved automatically based on the institution details provided at article submission. The affiliation of the corresponding author is used to determine eligibility for discounted or fee-free publication. When providing contact details during submission, it is essential to include an institutional email address, as well as the full name and address of the institution, including country. Publication will proceed following verification by the institute, where applicable. A confirmation email will be sent when the institution confirms eligibility under their Read & Publish agreement.

    If your institution does not have a Read & Publish agreement with The Company of Biologists, or does not currently include BiO in its agreement, you may wish to contact your library. Libraries and library consortia can find out more in the Read & Publish section of our Library Hub or by contacting subscriptions@biologists.com.

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