Public Access banner with a blue background, then to the right is an open box with light peering out the top with image icons of people popping out

NSF Public Access Initiative

2024: A Future of Open Science!  

NSF has issued a request for information in the the Federal Register on the equity aspects of the NSF Public Access Plan 2.0. Ensuring Open, Immediate and Equitable Access to National Science Foundation Funded Research (nsf23104) NSF - National Science FoundationHere is a  direct link to the Survey Monkey where input may be provided.  The survey closes on January 19, 2024. Please spread the word and encourage stakeholders to fill out this questionnaire on public access and equity. 

Following the announcement from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, NSF is excited to partner with agencies across the federal government to support open science. If you would like to celebrate this Year of Open Science with us, please check out the following pages for general and NSF-branded virtual backgrounds and more!  

In 2022, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) mandated that agencies undertake new plans to ensure that by 2025 peer-reviewed publications and associated data arising from federally funded research be made immediately and freely available upon date of publication.   

NSF is now responding to this new mandate and will be actively engaging with the research communities served by NSF to inform and learn from them about the policies and practices as they are deployed to comply with these new mandates. 


The U.S. National Science Foundation's Public Access Initiative ensures the outputs of NSF-funded scientific research are made publicly available to the greatest extent, with the fewest constraints possible and consistent with law. 

This page highlights the efforts of NSF's Public Access Initiative, which include: 

  • Maintaining the NSF Public Access Repository, where NSF-supported publications and other research products are openly available to the public.  

  • Funding projects that advance the understanding of, provide resources for, and/or encourage practices toward enhancing public access.  

  • Coordinating agency activities regarding public access.  


How can public access advance equity and learning?

Monday, July 17, 2023
11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. EST

NSF and AAAS co-hosted a webinar “How can public access advance equity and learning?" designed to solicit input and ideas on equity considerations associated with federal agencies’ public access plans.  For the first time, attendees heard from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and multiple federal agencies--NASA, NIH, DOE and NSF--on their public access plans in one setting while they addressed the scientific community’s concerns. The agenda also included a panel moderated by AAAS CEO Sudip Parikh during which academics, leaders and researchers discussed how the plans could affect the communities they represent.

Watch the recording, and access the slide presentation, speaker bios and other resources here:



Welcome and Introduction

The Honorable Sethuraman Panchanathan, Ph.D., Director, U.S. National Science Foundation (video message)

Overview of OSTP Public Access Guidance and Federal Agency Plans

  • Maryam Zaringhalam, Ph.D., Assistant Director for Public Access and Research Policy, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
  • Steven Crawford, Ph.D., Senior Program Executive for Data and Computing, Science Mission Directorate, NASA
  • Jessica Tucker, Ph.D., Acting Deputy Director of the Office of Science Policy, National Institutes of Health
  • Brian Hitson, Director, Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Department of Energy
  • Martin Halbert, Ph.D., Science Advisor for Public Access, U.S. National Science Foundation

Panel Discussion: Impact of Policies on Scientific Community

Moderator: Sudip Parikh, Ph.D., AAAS CEO and Executive Publisher, Science Family of Journals


  • Willie E. May, Ph.D., Vice President, Research and Economic Development, Morgan State University | President-elect, AAAS
  • Philip Rosenthal, M.D., Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene | Professor, Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
  • Vanessa Sansone, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Higher Education, Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, The University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Sam Zhang, Ph.D. candidate in Applied Mathematics, University of Colorado Boulder

Equity Aspirations

  • Alan Tomkins, Ph.D., Deputy Director, Social and Economic Sciences Division, Directorate on Social Behavioral and Economic Sciences, U.S. National Science Foundation, stood in for Charles Barber, Ph.D., Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, U.S. National Science

Audience Q&A


As background, in August 2022, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) called upon federal agencies to update their public access policies to make publications resulting from federally funded research publicly accessible without embargo on their free and public release. Agency public access plans must be complete and published by Dec. 31, 2024, and go into effect no later than one year after publication. Over the past several months, federal agencies have issued draft public access plans and are soliciting input on implementation. NSF Public Access Plan 2.0: Ensuring Open, Immediate, and Equitable Access to National Science Foundation Funded Research 

Webinar "How can public access advance equity and learning?" with AAAS and NSF

Webinars to help inform public access implementation 

Large NSF logo with various NSF-focused imagery coming out of a box that is glowing.

With a newly updated Public Access Plan, NSF's Public Access and Open Science Working Group has launched a Listen and Learn Series to help inform its implementation plan. Researchers and grant administrations are encouraged to register for upcoming webinars and/or watch past sessions

  • Friday, May 5 from 1 to 2 p.m. for Mathematical and Physical Sciences, and Technology, Innovation and Partnerships communities. Watch the webinar now.
  • Friday, June 2 from 1 to 2 p.m. for Social Behavioral and Economic Sciences and STEM Education communities. Watch the webinar now.

  • Friday, June 16 from 1 to 2 p.m. for the Geosciences and Biological Sciences communities. Watch the webinar now.   

  • Thursday, June 29 from 1 to 2 p.m. for the Engineering and Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering communities. Watch the webinar now.    

Visit NSF’s public access website for more information. And stay tuned for an upcoming request for information in the coming weeks and an afternoon webinar on June 30, co-sponsored by NSF and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, focusing on equity and early-career researchers. Updated public access policies are a centerpiece of the White House-led Year of Open Science. Visit to learn more and to get involved! 

Listen and Learn Webcast: Equitable, Effective and Sustainable NSF Public Access Policy


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This public webcast in November 2022 provided an opportunity for NSF communities to raise issues of concern and ask questions of working group leaders involved in crafting public access policy updates. Stay tuned for similar opportunities to weigh in on implementation in the coming months. 

NSF's public access policy

Public access requirements 

NSF policy ensures that research outputs from NSF awards are publicly accessible. NSF awardees can find NSF's public access requirements in the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide in the sections on Copyright and Publication/Dissemination of Grant Materials. For additional context regarding public access at NSF, please see the Public Access Plan published in March 2015.  

FAQ: NSF's public access policies  


Data management plans

Soon to be called data management and sharing plans, data management plans are an integral part of project proposals. Researchers are required to include data management plans in their proposals to NSF. Data management requirements and plans specific to directorates, offices, divisions, programs or other NSF units are found in program solicitations or in the links below. 

     Directorate and division guidance


     Program-specific guidance


Questions concerning NSF policies should be directed to the NSF Policy Office.  

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Screen capture of NSF Public Access Repository

Depositing NSF-funded research publications

NSF maintains a publicly available repository of peer-reviewed publications: the NSF Public Access Repository. NSF awardees must deposit all peer-reviewed publications and juried conference papers into the NSF Public Access Repository from awards resulting from proposals submitted, or due, on or after January 25, 2016.   

Learn more about the NSF Public Access Repository

The repository continues to grow year by year and will continue to be enhanced with new features in future versions. The current pilot allows researchers to add dataset metadata (in addition to peer-reviewed papers and conference papers) as a research product type, following deposition of that dataset in a disciplinary or generalist data repository. At this time, researchers are not required to submit datasets to NSF's Public Access Repository.  

NSF funding for public access projects

Public Access and Open Science funding opportunities
Posted December 14, 2022
Next Required Due Date: September 5, 2024
Posted January 31, 2023
Next Required Due Date: October 15, 2024
Posted January 23, 2024
Next Required Due Date: October 29, 2024
Posted November 18, 2022
Posted May 21, 2019
Dear Colleague Letter
Next Required Due Date: See letter for details
Posted February 8, 2023

To propose a public access project, email for more information. 


Projects funded by NSF's Public Access Initiative 


NSF is funding a cohort of 10, three-year, multi-institutional projects to start in 2023 to build and enhance national coordination among researchers and other stakeholders to advance findable, accessible, interoperable, reusable, or FAIR, data principles and open-science practices. These are the inaugural awards of NSF’s FAIROS RCN (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable, Open-Science Research Coordination Networks) open-science program and represent a pooled investment of over $12.5 million in open science from all NSF directorates, supporting 28 NSF awards.

Big Data Innovation Hubs 

NSF's Public Access Initiative has also been the home for the NSF Big Data Innovation Hubs, or BD Hubs, program — a national program to foster best practices in using big data for research.  

See a list of all BD Hubs awards

All Awarded Projects 

The NSF Public Access Initiative funds research projects that advance the understanding of public access and open science. 

See a list of what the Public Access Initiative has funded

Public access at NSF: Past, present and future 

In response to the 2013 White House Office of Science and Technology Policy memorandum on Expanding Public Access to the Results of Federally Funded Research. (colloquially referred to as the Holdren memo), NSF developed its Public Access Plan (NSF 15-52), setting forth a bold, new agency effort to ensure that the outputs of NSF-funded research would be made publicly accessible.  

A 2016 Special Report on NSF’s Public Access Plan provides insights into the NSF Public Access Initiative's genesis.  

timeline for new  2025 public access requirements outlining from 2022 to 2025

In August 2022, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy Acting Director  Alondra Nelson released a memo that calls for ensuring free, immediate and equitable access to federally funded research upon publication. Answering the White House’s call for more scientific openness, NSF is updating its Public Access Plan to meet government-wide requirements. In 2024, NSF will publish Public Access Plan 2.0 to enable immediate access to publications and underlying data. NSF will enforce these new policies no later than January 2025. An update to the Public Access Plan focusing on researcher affiliations and funding and persistent digital identifiers for researchers, research products and awards will be published in 2026, for implementation by January 2027.  

Watch this page in the coming months as we update our policies to comply with this new guidance.