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Publication and Dissemination of Research Outputs Policy

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Section 1 - Background and Purpose

(1) La Trobe University is committed to the highest standards in the collection, storing, linking and dissemination of research outputs. La Trobe recognises the benefit to the wider community from the dissemination of research findings and encourages publications, and underlying or supporting data resulting from research activities to be disseminated as broadly as possible and at the earliest opportunity.

(2) This Policy defines the principles governing how the benefits of research outputs generated at the University are disseminated to other researchers, professionals in associated fields, sponsors and the wider community. 

(3) This Procedure outlines the University’s requirements of researchers in the publication and dissemination of research outputs and the responsibility of researchers for the accuracy and timeliness of the publication and dissemination of such findings. 

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Section 2 - Scope

(4) Applies to:

  1. all La Trobe research activities and outputs;
  2. all forms of dissemination;
  3. all La Trobe staff and students undertaking research.
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Section 3 - Policy Statement

(5) La Trobe University is committed to the highest standards and principles in disseminating research findings at all stages of the research lifecycle. 

(6) All La Trobe staff and students involved in research are required to respect and apply the requirements for peer review as set out in the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (2018), the Singapore Statement on Research Integrity (2010) and those of State and Federal codes.

(7) Researchers have a responsibility to disseminate a full account of their research findings as broadly as possible, including negative findings and results contrary to their hypotheses. 

(8) Researchers must take all reasonable steps to ensure that disseminated findings are accurate and properly reported. If a researcher becomes aware of misleading or inaccurate statements in or about their research findings, they must attempt to correct the record as soon as possible.

(9) Researchers will attribute prior work and acknowledge all who have made contributions to the research in accordance with the University’s Authorship of Research Outputs Policy. It is unethical to use the work of others without appropriate attribution or acknowledgement. 

(10) Researchers should disseminate their research by depositing their publications in the University’s open access repository, Research Online at the appropriate time. 

(11) Generally, the same research findings must not be included in several publications except when the findings presented in an initial publication are later reproduced as part of a larger manuscript or when the findings are included in review articles, anthologies, theses, collections or translations into another language. An author who submits substantially the same work to more than one publisher must disclose this to each publisher at the time of submission. Research findings that are republished must only be done in accordance with the terms of existing publishing agreement.

(12) Publications must: 

  1. include ‘La Trobe University’ as the institution of affiliation;
  2. acknowledge all sources of financial and in-kind support for the research and include any relevant grant numbers;
  3. identify any potential conflicts of interest that may arise.
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Section 4 - Procedure

Part A - Relevant Legislation and Guidelines

(13) As listed in Associated Information.

Part B - Reporting Traditional and Non-traditional Research Outputs

Publications Reporting

(14) Before sharing their findings researchers must ensure that they have:

  1. engaged in peer review to test their findings; 
  2. complied with any legislation or regulation that is relevant to the dissemination of their research including copyright restrictions;
  3. taken into account any restrictions related to intellectual property agreements or conditions imposed by the sponsors of research or other third party agreements;
  4. considered whether there are any restrictions on dissemination due to the particular sensitivities of the data, including confidentiality or privacy requirements;
  5. taken steps to protect any commercially valuable intellectual property, including IP covered under the University’s Intellectual Property Policy and any third party agreements;
  6. notified the University if their work constitutes dual use research of concern and have adhered to Federal export controls regulations. 

(15) La Trobe staff and graduate research candidates are required to submit full details, including Field of Research (FoR) codes, of their peer reviewed work to My Publications as soon as they are published and before the deadline each year. This requirement applies to commercial and non-profit publications and traditional and non-traditional research outputs. More information and log-in to My Publications can be found on the University Library.

(16) Research outputs should be entered into My Publications on a continuous basis throughout the year. Staff and graduate research candidates will be able to view their respective list of outputs. All research outputs relating to a particular collection year must be entered no later than the end of March of the following year. 

(17) A preliminary report of research outputs is produced and verified by University appointed departments. The output reports are forwarded to Heads of School, who have a responsibility to confirm the research outputs listed for staff in their School in a timely manner. 

(18) Confirmed reports of research outputs are forwarded to College Associate Pro Vice-Chancellors (Research) who have a responsibility to provide a second confirmation of the research outputs listed for staff in their College in a timely manner. 

Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) Reporting

(19) New staff and graduate research candidates are required to provide the details of their traditional and non-traditional research outputs to their Head of School and to My Publications on appointment to the University. Staff who produce non-traditional research outputs are also required to provide a research statement for these works according to the current ERA requirements.

(20) Sensitive and restricted reports will be placed in a private archive of the University institutional repository, Research Online. These materials will have stringent access controls, for access by ERA peer reviewers only.

Part C - Depositing Research Outputs into the La Trobe Institutional Repository

(21) Subject to any conditions imposed by a publisher, La Trobe researchers should deposit their accepted manuscripts into the University institutional repository, Research Online. Some publishers allow the first version of a manuscript to be used for open access. In addition, recording the first version allows for an argument of precedence in publishing an idea.

(22) Research Online can increase the impact and citation rates of submitted publications by improving the visibility and discoverability through internet search engines, allowing a researcher’s work to be located more easily, and cited more frequently. 

(23) The form of research outputs that can be submitted to Research Online and the procedures for submission can be found on the University Library website. 

(24) A copy of the accepted manuscript should be sent to Research Online by email.

(25) Research outputs which should be submitted to Research Online private archive with restricted access controls include where:

  1. the author intends to commercialise the work;
  2. the work contains confidential information;
  3. the author has entered into a contract that prohibits third party access and/or use of the research output.

(26) Works that are defamatory, misleading or deceptive or breach a state or federal law or regulation, or offends the rights of any third party should not be submitted to Research Online.

Part D - Publications Arising from Publicly Funded Research

(27) Researchers with ARC/NHMRC funded research publications must abide by the open access policies of the funder, which mandate that research outputs arising from a project must be deposited into an open access institutional repository (e.g. Research Online) within a 12 month period from the date the output was published or made publicly available. 

(28) The publication metadata and corresponding ARC/NHMRC grant identification number must also be deposited into Research Online even if they have already been made freely available. The researcher is responsible for supplying ARC/NHMRC grant identification numbers for each deposited research output. 

(29) The Library is responsible for ensuring the supplied grant identification number is recorded against the respective research output.

Part E - ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) Identifiers

(30) The University supports the use of open researcher and contributor identifiers (e.g., ORCIDs) to help ascertain researchers and their publications. Publishers and funding bodies are now requiring ORCID identifiers to be provided as a matter of course. To take full advantage of these systems, researchers should ensure they confirm their ORCIDs in the My Publications system.

Part F - Signing a Publication Agreement

(31) Researchers should ensure they are comfortable with any agreement conditions proposed by a publisher regarding publication of their work.

(32) Default agreements often favour the publisher and assign very limited and reduced rights for authors. These agreements can restrict access to an author’s research.

Part G - Accessing Publications Stored in the Repository

(33) The Library will provide appropriate access controls to submitted publications in the University repository, Research Online. 

(34) Subject to publisher agreements and embargoes, versions of research outputs held in Research Online will be available to the general public. The version allowed for open access can be changed over time due to an embargo, changes in publisher policy or changes to legislation or regulation.

Part H - Management of the Repository and My Publications

(35) The Library is responsible for the management of the repository and My Publications.

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Section 5 - Definitions

(36) For the purpose of this Policy and Procedure:

  1. Accepted manuscript: The version of an article that has been accepted for publication and which typically includes author-incorporated changes suggested during submission, peer review, and editor-author communications;
  2. Australian Research Council (ARC): A Commonwealth entity involved in the provision of Government support for research under its National Competitive Grants Programme;
  3. Dual use research of concern: Research which may have an alternative application to that which was originally intended with negative implications for public health, safety, the environment or national security;
  4. Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA): A triennial publication assessment by the Australian Research Council to evaluate the quality of the research undertaken in Australian universities against national and international benchmarks;
  5. Export controls regulations: all government legislation and regulations relating to the exporting and supplying of controlled goods and technology and includes the Customs Act 1901, the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012, and the Weapons of Mass Destruction (Prevention of Proliferation) Act 1995;
  6. Graduate Research Candidates: All students enrolled in Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) courses, professional doctorates by research courses, and masters by research courses;
  7. My Publications: The University system for recording and promoting research publications and other non-traditional research outputs using Symplectic Elements software;
  8. National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC): A funding body that supports research in the health and medical sector and is involved in the development and provision of advice in the conduct of health and medical research;
  9. Non-traditional research outputs: original creative works; live performance of creative works; recorded or rendered creative works; curated or produced substantial public exhibitions and events; and research reports for an external body;
  10. Open access: Allowing research outputs to be freely accessible to the general public;
  11. ORCID: A not-for-profit membership organisation of research organisations, publishers, funders and other professional associations engaged in research services. ORCID maintains a registry of unique researcher identifiers and provides a transparent method of linking research activities and outputs to these identifiers;
  12. Researcher: Someone who conducts an organised and systematic study of a given subject, field or problem and undertakes to discover facts or principles. For the purpose of this procedure, a researcher is any La Trobe staff or students undertaking research;
  13. Staff: All employees of the University or affiliated enterprises with which the University has a formal agreement and includes casual employees, clinical staff and unpaid members of the University such as Honorary and Adjunct appointments, all of which are registered on the HR system.
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Section 6 - Stakeholders

Responsibility for implementation – Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research).
Responsibility for Monitoring Implementation and Compliance – College Pro Vice-Chancellors; Dean of Graduate Studies;
Executive Director, Research Office.