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Neurology & Neurosurgery

Provides resources, strategies, and information on conducting research in Neurology & Neurosurgery.

Copyright & Open Access

In brief, copyright is a form of legal protection that allows creators of original work to control some reproduction and distribution of their work (see below for a more complete description).   In general, the rights that you as an author have include the exclusive right to do & to authorize others to reproduce the work in whole or in part, prepare derivative works (such as translations), & distribute copies of the work.  These rights have exceptions and limitations, including the fair use provisions, which allow certain uses without permission of the copyright holder.

You should think about copyright as soon as you begin any substantive research project that may be published in a journal/another form.  Don't sign a publishing contract without understanding copyright and your rights as an author.

Open access (OA) scholarship is available online and can be read for free. It is often available for use and sharing without copyright and licensing restrictions commonly placed on published works. By making their work available in this manner, authors ensure that the broadest possible audience can read and use it, without limiting it to only those who are affiliated with research libraries or who can afford costly journal subscriptions.

Open access is not defined by a particular business model or type of content. Rather, open access is an approach to sharing one's work with the wider world. To learn more about open access, consult the resources below.

For information on NIH access policies, please see the NIH Public Access Policy page in this guide.

Open Access

Retaining Your Rights With an Author's Addendum

If your publication agreement does not allow you to use your work in the ways that you would like, you may want to talk with your publisher about changing the terms of the agreement before you sign it. The University of Michigan Author's Addenda may be useful to you during that negotiation process. Many publishers are amenable to changes to certain aspects of publication agreements. Most also have provisions that are "deal-breakers" for them, on which they are unable to compromise. If your publisher is unable to change the agreement in the ways that you want, it is up to you to decide whether you still wish to publish with them, even if you can't keep all of the rights you want.

If you have questions about using the Author’s Addenda, please email the Library Copyright Office.

Copyright Basics

The information presented here is intended for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal advice. If you have specific legal questions pertaining to the University of Michigan, please contact the Office of the General Counsel.

What is copyright?

What is protected by copyright?

What isn't protected by copyright?

How do works acquire copyright?

How long does copyright last?

Who is the owner of a copyrighted work?