Several funding agencies have changed their policies surrounding using preprints, and others are considering doing so. We’re collecting relevant examples here. If you have references for us to add, please contact us.


American Heart Association (2021)

“Sharing manuscripts before (or alongside) the formal peer review process is highly encouraged for AHA awardees. “

Australian Research Council (September 14, 2021)

“For future scheme rounds, the Australian Research Council (ARC) will allow the referencing and inclusion of preprints in any part of a National Competitive Grant Program (NCGP) grant application. This includes within the Research Outputs list as well as the body of an application.”

National Health and Medical Research Council, Australia (August 23, 2021)

“On advice from NHMRC’s Research Committee (RC) in June 2021 and considering current international practice, NHMRC will accept preprints as publications for track record assessment purposes for schemes opening from October 2021.”

Science Foundation Ireland (updated 2021)

“To facilitate prompt dissemination of research findings SFI encourages researchers to deposit preprints ahead of publication. These should be available under CC-BY licences.”

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (effective 2021)

“Preprints Of Submitted Manuscripts Are Encouraged. While not needed to fulfill the Open Access policy requirements, Grantees are encouraged to deposit Funded Research consisting of their submitted manuscript, and its subsequent versions, on a preprint server under a CC BY 4.0 license.”

Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (November 2020)

“Grant recipients must submit all publications, excluding non-research articles such as review articles, that were in part or fully funded by ALSF as a preprint to bioRxiv, medRxiv or a similar preprint sharing service prior to or at the time of initial journal submission. Preprints should have a CC BY or CC BY-NC license applied.”

L’Agence Nationale de la Research (ANR, France) (June 2020)

In their call for proposals within the Plan d’action 2020, ANR indicates that preprints will be accepted as part of applications: “La bibliographie peut intégrer des preprints non encore publiés dans des journaux scientifiques avec comité de lecture, en particulier pour le référencement de données préliminaires.”

“Bibliography can include preprints not yet published in peer reviewed scientific journals, in particular to reference preliminary data.”

Fast Grants for COVID-19 science (April 7, 2020)

Funded by VCs John Collison, Patrick Collison, Paul Graham, Reid Hoffman, Fiona McKean and Tobias Lütke, Yuri and Julia Milner, and Chris and Crystal Sacca. The call states: “You must upload all manuscripts reporting work supported by the grant to a preprint server such as bioRxiv or arXiv upon submission to a peer-reviewed journal.”

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (March 2, 2020)

The policy states that “All articles resulting from MJFF funding must be posted in an open access preprint repository with free, immediate readership rights” in addition to specifying that peer-reviewed versions must be open access.

Arnold Ventures

In the event of a published article, this requirement may be satisfied by posting the final published version, the accepted author manuscript, or a near-final working paper or preprint. It is the responsibility of the grantee to retain sufficient rights to post articles as required by this policy. In the event of a research finding that is not formally published, the grantee should nonetheless write up the finding and post it on OSF as a working paper or preprint.

CNRS Roadmap for Open Science (November, 2019)

The French National Centre for Scientific Research released a roadmap including: “Action 2: Recommend the use of preprint servers which host manuscripts submitted to journals, to provide for rapid open access distribution channels through non-profit platforms”

Aligning Science Across Parkinson’s (ASAP) (October, 2019)

An October, 2019 RFA from the ASAP Collaborative Research Network, (“a program of the Aligning Science Across Parkinson’s (ASAP) initiative being implemented through The Michael J. Fox Foundation”) requires that “All data resulting from the Team’s work will be available to the scientific community at large at the earliest opportunity on preprint servers, online protocol platforms, and in an open access journal format […] All publications related to this funded work must be submitted to a preprint server, such as bioRxiv, before or concurrent to the first submission to a journal.” Furthermore, applicants will be selected based on a number of criteria, including: “Commitment to open science and active research community engagement. These values may be demonstrated through service on committees and editorial boards, past publication of open access articles, use of preprint servers, protocol repositories, etc.”

The Serrapilheira Institute (September, 2019)

The private Brazilian funder’s best practices guide in open and reproducible science recommends that researchers deposit articles as preprints “before or upon submission;” it also encourages citing and commenting on preprints. (Note that the recommendations were developed by ASAPbio Ambassador Olavo Amaral)

Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (Fall 2018)

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation’s support for preprinting is expressed in its inclusion of preprints as evidence of contributions to research, both in grant applications and in progress reports. There is a specific section in the biographical sketch section of applications to list preprints, and grantees are explicitly asked if research results have been shared in preprints in annual reporting forms.  

Wellcome Trust (November 5, 2018)

“Where there is a significant public health benefit to preprints being shared widely and rapidly, such as a disease outbreak, these preprints must be published:

    • before peer review
    • on an approved platform that supports immediate publication of the complete manuscript
    • under a CC-BY licence.”

The Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance

“We formally accept preprints […] we’ve told people to use one of the internationally accepted repositories. So for example if you’re a life scientist and you have deposited something in bioRxiv, that’s good for us […] We also tell our reviewers […] to look at preprints very seriously as work in progress. I must emphasize that preprints cannot perpetually remain preprints […] We encourage people to go ahead and publish their work in a regular journal.” – Dr. Shahid Jameel, CEO of the Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance (17:30 of video recording of interview by DORA on 2018-08-03)

European Research Council (ERC)

  • From “Main Changes Expected in the ERC Work Programme 2019” (August 6, 2018): “…preprints may be included [in applicants’ track record], if freely available from a preprint server (preprints should be properly referenced and either a link to the preprint or a DOI should be provided) (page 17, pdf)
  • Starting, Consolidator & Advanced Grants (November 3, 2017): “In evaluating the applicant’s track record preprints, properly referenced and with the DOI and linked to a preprint, may also be taken into consideration.” (page 10, pdf)

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Future Leaders Fellowship program

“UKRI welcomes the inclusion of preprints in publication lists.” (page 16, pdf )

Le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS, France) (October 27, 2017)

“Les alliances AllEnvi et AvieSan, soucieuses de ne pas décourager un mouvement potentiellement bénéfique pour les progrès scientifiques, déclarent reconnaître le preprint comme une forme recevable de communication scientifique, particulièrement pour les résultats de la recherche fondamentale. Leur production peut donc être prise en compte, selon des modalités propres, dans les processus de recrutement, d’évaluation et de promotion des chercheurs ainsi que dans la gestion des collectifs ou l’évaluation des projets.”

Broadly, preprints should be taken into account, in a specific manner, in the processes of hiring, evaluation and promotion of researchers as well as in the management of laboratories or in project evaluation – with thanks to Brandon Stell for translation

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC, UK) (June 12, 2017)

“We encourage all researchers funded by BBSRC to share their pre-peer review manuscripts via established preprint servers, through dedicated repositories or a preprint service.”

Cancer Research UK (CRUK) (May 30, 2017)

“We allow – and encourage – our researchers to deposit preprints of their publications, and to cite preprints and other non-traditional research outputs in their funding applications. We’re updating our application guidelines to make this clear.”

National Institutes of Health (NIH, USA) (March 24, 2017)

“The NIH encourages investigators to use interim research products, such as preprints, to speed the dissemination and enhance the rigor of their work.”

“Interim research products can be cited anywhere other research products are cited.”

Note: On March 2, 2018, the NIH clarified that preprints cannot be included in post-submission materials (to update an application before study section) because they do not qualify as unforeseen events.

Update (May 3, 2019): When claiming preprints as an interim research product of an NIH award, please ensure that you follow the NIH guidance on how to do this: It is important to state clearly that the preprint has not been peer-reviewed. Preprints do not fall under the public access policy ( Incorrect designation of cited preprints may delay processing of the next year of the award. With thanks to Josh Fessel for raising this issue.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI, USA) (January 30, 2017)

“HHMI laboratory heads may also wish to consider depositing articles in a preprint server, such as BioRxiv. The Institute recognizes deposited, publicly-available preprints as evidence of productivity and will accept them for purposes such as laboratory head reviews.”

“If an Institute laboratory head whose appointment is up for review submits in his or her collection of significant papers an article that has been submitted for publication, but is not yet ‘in press’, then HHMI will not consider the article in the review unless it has been deposited in a preprint server from which it is available to the public. Deposit in a preprint server must occur before the article is submitted for the HHMI review. This policy is effective for investigators who will be reviewed after January 1, 2018. (The investigator is responsible for compliance with the preprint policy of the selected journal.)”

Wellcome Trust (January 10, 2017)

“As of January 2017, we will permit researchers to cite preprints, or pre-peer reviewed manuscripts, in their grant applications and end-of-grant review reports.

Medical Research Council (MRC, UK) (January 3, 2017)

“…we are allowing researchers to cite preprints in their grant and fellowship applications. This will come into effect with applications received after 1 April 2017…

Preprints may be cited in applications only if they have a permanent identifier such as a DOI or any other persistent identifier.

To discourage ‘salami-slicing’ and because most findings in pre-prints are subsequently included in peer reviewed publications, preprints should only be referenced when they are less than five years old at the time the application is submitted. This requirement will be kept under review.

Human Frontiers Science Program (December 12, 2016)

“The Board of Trustees of the International Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) has decided that for competitions starting in calendar year 2017, applicants may list preprint articles in the publication section of HFSP proposals. Current HFSP awardees are also permitted to cite publications which are deposited in freely available preprint repositories in interim and final reports to the Organization.”

Helmsley Trust (September 29, 2016)

“We are excited to announce an important update to our Helmsley grantmaking process, which will now encourage all prospective and current research grantees to list preprint publications in their applications and interim reports.

European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) Long-Term Fellowships (for postdocs)

“Papers published in preprint servers (arXiv, BioRxiv, PeerJ…) will be taken into consideration, but at least one first-author article in an international peer reviewed journal is required at the time of application (see above). Papers submitted or in preparation, but not yet accessible to the community, will not be considered and should not be included in the list of publications.”

EMBO Young Investigator Programme (for new PIs)

“EMBO will consider papers published on preprint servers (arXiv, BioRxiv, PeerJ., etc), but a last author publication in an international peer reviewed journal is still a requirement. Your last author paper should have “accepted” status by the time of the interview (23 or 24 October 2019).” [last accessed May 13, 2019]

Simons Foundation Policies and Procedures (September 1, 2016)

“The Simons Foundation encourages PIs to post preprints on recognized servers, such as arXiv or bioRxiv, in parallel with (or even before) submission to a peer-reviewed journal.”

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI, USA)

“We are committed to accelerating the pace of science by: […] depositing manuscripts (by CZI science team, collaborators, or grantees) as preprints before peer review to increase access to research findings and to communicate results more quickly.”

Canadian Institute for Health Research (CIHR, Canada) (updated September 28, 2017)

“While publication in scientific journals continues to be the primary means of sharing ideas, observations and discoveries, the upload of content to preprint servers does not, of necessity, require simultaneous submission to journals. Preprints offer several areas of opportunity for researchers who wish to distribute work that is not typically published in most journals. For example, preprints serve as an important mechanism for the distribution of negative research results, confirmatory results, reproducibility attempts, and numerous other types of scientific activities. “

“Since the early 2000’s, CIHR has recognized preprints as an important vehicle for the dissemination of research results. Preprints also contribute to the objectives and outcomes of the CIHR Health Research and Health-Related Data Framework.”

More from the CIHR Peer Review Manual for Grant Applications:

“Communications, quick-print reports, letters and electronic distribution of pre-prints are important vehicles for disseminating research results. All such contributions should be treated equally when assessing quality and impact, and reviewers should not regard certain types as “second class” or “grey literature.””