How do you make yourself more accessible

Publishing at the TU Berlin

The restrictions on public and university life as a result of the Sars-CoV-2 coronavirus keep the world and the TU Berlin in suspense. Most German universities and research institutions have gone into emergency operation, libraries and many other public institutions are closed. Despite the restrictions, the university library of the TU Berlin tries to ensure the supply of literature and information to TU members as well as possible (see also FAQs on current services). Some publishers open up access to their e-books, magazines and databases that are otherwise hidden behind payment barriers - but often only for a limited time for the duration of the pandemic. Despite the efforts of the libraries and publishers, the demand cannot be met in every case. Many teachers, researchers and students now notice more clearly than ever how essential (free) access to scientific knowledge is - to textbooks, overview literature and research articles. Sometimes free access can save lives.

So that university members, politics and society can freely access your scientific results now and in the future, the Open Access team offers support for TU members. The legal issues are often complex. However, newer journal articles can almost always be published Open Access - on the basis of general policies of the publishers and the right to secondary publication enshrined in German copyright law.

Recommendations for TU members

  1. Are you about to submit your latest publication to the publisher? Or is your manuscript currently being reviewed? Publish the preprint!
  2. Your previous publications are closed access, i.e. only available behind a payment barrier? Exercise your secondary publication right!

1. Publication of preprints - how does it work?

So that your peers can read your latest research results as quickly as possible, you can distribute your manuscript to the publisher via a preprint server before it is published. As is so often the case, Wikipedia is a good starting point to learn more about the background of preprints and to find technically suitable preprint servers. Preprints can also be placed in the institutional repository of the TU Berlin (DepositOnce); however, we recommend the use of dedicated preprint servers, as greater visibility in the specialist community can be expected here. The following preprint servers are particularly suitable:

You can submit contributions yourself on preprint servers. There is no comprehensive peer review. However, the contributions are checked by experts to ensure that no unscientific, offensive or similar content is disseminated. Please note that most preprint servers only activate the articles if they have not yet been formally published by a publisher.

You should also clarify beforehand whether the journal in which you want to submit the article supports the distribution of preprints - and not, for example, rejecting the submission because it would no longer be an original publication. How can you check that?

Exercise the right of secondary publication - how does it work?

Publications that were previously closed access can often be made freely accessible in the form of accepted manuscripts. The accepted manuscript is the version after the review, which is identical in wording to the published version, but has not yet been laid out or edited by the publisher.

Whether, when and under what conditions you can re-publish a publication depends on the case - a general answer is unfortunately not possible. The Sherpa / Romeo database is a useful starting point for research. Contact the Open Access team by email (stating the DOI of the article or the name of the journal or publisher) - then we will research the conditions for you and give you a recommendation for implementation.

We recommend using repositories for the Open Access secondary publication in order to ensure permanent free access - and not your own website or social networks such as ResearchGate or (more on ResearchGate & Co here in the blog). There is a large selection of repositories worldwide, for researching suitable offers we recommend OpenDOAR and ROAR. And of course you can also use the institutional repository of the TU Berlin (DepositOnce). The Open Access team supports you in clarifying which conditions publishers may have to adhere to.


For all questions about preprints and secondary publications, we give priority to publications related to CoVid19-related issues.

Second publication service for TU members:

Contact: [email protected]