In 2008, Harvard's Faculty of Arts & Sciences voted unanimously to give the Harvard a nonexclusive, irrevocable right to distribute their scholarly articles for any non-commercial purpose. In the years since, the remaining eight Harvard schools voted to establish similar open-access (OA) policies, and several research centers have joined their number.
In the words of OSC Director Peter Suber, author of Open Access, "The basic idea of OA is simple: Make research literature available online without price barriers and without most permission barriers."
Scholarly articles provided to the university are stored, preserved, and made freely accessible in digital form in DASH, Harvard University Library's open access repository. The repository has the institution of Harvard standing behind it to ensure its availability, longevity, and functionality.
If you are considering adopting an open access policy at your institution, we encourage you to download and review our model policy language and good-practices guide, which represent the accumulated experience of multiple institutions that have drafted and implemented open access policies. See also our advocacy section.