Publication Fund

Bielefeld University' s Publication Fund supports the publication of articles in open access journals.

With the help of the German Research Foundation (DFG) and its Open Access Publishing funding programme, article processing charges (APCs) levied by open access journals can (on application, where necessary) be paid on behalf of university members. The Publication Fund is administered by the University Library.

DFG Eligibility Criteria

Funding is subject to the following conditions of the DFG funding programme:

  • The articles to be published will appear in journals all of whose articles are freely accessible online immediately after publication in accordance with the principle of open access: that is, free of charge and without technical or legal barriers. Information on these "pure" open access journals can be found in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
    Please contact us if you have any doubts regarding the integrity or professionalism of a particular open access publisher.
  • The journals employ strict quality-assurance procedures that are acknowledged in the discipline in question.
  • The article processing charge may not exceed a maximum of 2,000 euros incl. 19% VAT per article. (Please note: Generally, VAT needs to be added to the amount invoiced!)
  • A member of Bielefeld University is responsible for the publication as a "submitting author" or a "corresponding author".
  • Authors are requested to ensure that the funded publications include the following acknowledgment:
    "We acknowledge the financial support of the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the Open Access Publication Fund of Bielefeld University for the article processing charge."

Ineligible for funding are:

  • Contributions to "hybrid" publications (i.e., subscription-based or licensed journals in which individual articles are published open access, such as Springer Open Choice, for example, or similar offerings).
  • Submission fees charged for merely submitting contributions, independent of possible publication.

Submissions to BioMed Central, PLOS, Frontiers, MDPI, and Cogitatio

Bielefeld University has concluded agreements with the publishers BioMed Central, PLOS (Public Library of Science), Frontiers, MDPI (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute) and Cogitatio Press regarding the funding of article processing charges. If you fulfil the above-mentioned DFG eligibility criteria, the Publication Fund will pay the publication fees and you do not have to submit an application for funding.
However, it is essential that you submit your article from Bielefeld University's IP range so that the invoice can be processed directly by the University Library.

New as of February 2016: For submissions to BioMed Central, the corresponding author must be affiliated to Bielefeld University!

Submissions to other OA Publishers

In this case, too, invoices are processed by the University Library. To ensure that the invoice can be processed as fast as possible, please observe the following:

  • If you are planning a publication with an open access publisher other than BioMed Central, PLoS, Frontiers, MDPI or Cogitatio please apply for defrayal of the costs before submission, if possible, using this form.
  • When submitting your article, please give the following billing address:
    Lieselotte Bickmann, c/o Bielefeld University Library, P.O. Box 10 02 91, 33502 Bielefeld (Germany)
  • State the VAT ID of the University Library: DE 811307718
  • Request the publisher to state its VAT ID on the invoice
  • State the name of the submitting or corresponding author in the subject header line
Should the publisher send the invoice directly to you nevertheless, please forward it to


In accordance with the DFG funding programme, the funded publications are indexed in the university's institutional repository PUB - The Publication Server at Bielefeld University by the university library.
In order to make the price development for fee-based open access publishing transparent, the university's Publication Fund participates in the Initiative OpenAPC.