The practical implementation of open access policies and mandates in Spanish public universities Articles uri icon



publication date

  • January 2022

start page

  • p. 7147

end page

  • p. 7167


  • 12


  • 127

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0138-9130

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1588-2861


  • This paper analyses the open access (OA) production of Spanish public universities from 2011 to 2020 to achieve the following objectives: (i) to identify and analyse policies, strategies and mandates for the promotion of open access; (ii) to analyse practices related to open access of scientific publications, (iii) to explore methodologies that allow identifying variables related to open access of publications. The procedure followed consists of three phases: first, the Spanish regulation on open access is analysed; second, bibliometric techniques are applied to obtain a series of indicators related to open access of publications indexed in the web of science core collection; third, a statistical analysis based on a classification tree of variables is proposed. The results obtained show that the institutional measures and actions to promote OA identified in the policies and mandates of the universities correspond to the bibliometric data. Spanish public universities have higher rates of OA publications, with a clear preference for Green Published and DOAJ Gold publications. OA publications are systematically more cited than non-OA publications (with Green Accepted in the lead), and there is a strong relationship between visibility, funding and open access. It has also been observed that the variables that best predict whether the percentage of OA publications of a university is above average are: the proportion of publications in DOAJ Gold, the impact received by Hybrid publications and the percentage of documents in the Bronze way.


  • Information Science
  • Statistics


  • open access; scientific publications; spain; spanish universities