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Research Publishing (Open Access)

Open access compliance and REF 2021

Pros and cons of publishing in a Preprint server

"Before you agree to publish your paper as a preprint be mindful not to shoot your future self in the foot!"


  • Free for both author and reader
  • Instant online publication upon acceptance
  • Broad and early dissemination of research findings
  • Allows the author to receive rapid feedback on own work (before traditional publication)
  • Could lead to journal solicitations (but beware predatory publishers)


  • Not peer reviewed (submission only undergoes minimal checking e.g. grammar)
  • Not all formats are accepted (e.g. editorials, book reviews)
  • Some journals (not all) do not accept articles previously posted as a preprint
    • Authors need to be very careful not to jeopardise where they ultimately wish to publish their article by publishing the preprint i.e. be mindful not to shoot future self in the foot
    • Once published on a preprint server an article cannot generally be withdrawn