Knowledge Unlatched Launches the 2021 Open Access Funding Round, Introducing New Partnerships and Pledging Options for Libraries

2021 4 KU Launch Campaign

Berlin, May 4th, 2021: Knowledge Unlatched (KU), the international initiative for Open Access (OA), is pleased to announce the launch of the eighth round of funding today. It includes its legacy KU Select Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) Books collection and several new collections developed in partnerships with renowned academic publishers and university presses, including University of Michigan Press, Amsterdam University Press, Central European University Press, and EDP Sciences.

KU is continuing the thematic approach to pledging in 2021, which means pledging libraries can select the appropriate collections based on their preferred subject areas (e.g., History, Politics, Communications, Linguistics, STEM). As in previous years, this year’s collections have been assessed and selected by librarians based on their relevance, including over 200 subject experts on the KU Selection Committee who have curated the content for KU Select HSS 2022 Books.

In addition, a new cooperation with Verfassungsblog extends KU’s OA activities into the medium of peer-reviewed blog posts in Constitutional Law and Politics, while KU’s Focus Collection offers a targeted collection of 20 cutting-edge new titles on Climate Change.

KU also continues to work with its established partners, including University of California Press (Luminos), Open Commons of Phenomenology, Routledge (Gender Studies and African Studies), HAU Books, IWAP, Berghahn, Pluto Press, transcript and wbv.

“We are highly motivated by library support of our initiatives, even amid ongoing restrictions related to the pandemic,” says Dr. Sven Fund, Managing Director of KU. “The past year has shown the importance of uninhibited access to quality research content, and KU will continue to do its part in serving this pressing need.”

To date, KU has worked with over 100 publishers to make more than 2,700 books and more than 50 journals OA, thanks to the support of over 630 institutions worldwide. The number of user interactions (including downloads and views) for KU titles has grown by 20 percent each year and now stands at ten million.

Libraries may pledge support for this year’s OA offerings until the end of November 2021. Provided enough institutions take part in pledging, KU’s initiatives will once again enable participating publishers to make their offerings OA, and users and researchers everywhere will benefit from unrestricted access to scholarly content.

More information about the 2021 OA initiatives is available on KU’s website,

About Knowledge Unlatched

Knowledge Unlatched is committed to Open Access to academic content for readers and researchers around the world. Its online platform is the central point of contact for libraries worldwide to support Open Access models, book and journal collections of leading publishing houses and various initiatives.


Philipp Hess, Publisher Relations