Improving the discoverability and web impact of open repositories: techniques and evaluation

Abstract:  In this contribution we experiment with a suite of repository adjustments and improvements performed on Strathprints, the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, institutional repository powered by EPrints 3.3.13. These adjustments were designed to support improved repository web visibility and user engagement, thereby improving usage. Although the experiments were performed on EPrints it is thought that most of the adopted improvements are equally applicable to any other repository platform. Following preliminary results reported elsewhere, and using Strathprints as a case study, this paper outlines the approaches implemented, reports on comparative search traffic data and usage metrics, and delivers conclusions on the efficacy of the techniques implemented. The evaluation provides persuasive evidence that specific enhancements to technical aspects of a repository can result in significant improvements to repository visibility, resulting in a greater web impact and consequent increases in content usage. COUNTER usage grew by 33% and traffic to Strathprints from Google and Google Scholar was found to increase by 63% and 99% respectively. Other insights from the evaluation are also explored. The results are likely to positively inform the work of repository practitioners and open scientists.

Springer Nature: Plan S needs to focus on helping all authors and funders to better understand the benefits of OA | Group | Springer Nature

Research undertaken by Springer Nature shows that while there are proven benefits in publishing OA, including increased citations, increased downloads and wider impact, authors are still not routinely choosing to publish OA for often valid reasons.  Springer Nature has demonstrated that when innovative transformative deals are in place, a wide range of journals available from which authors can choose and the benefits of OA strongly promoted, then accelerated OA transition is not only possible but very successful.  In the four most mature countries which have Read and Publish deals with Springer Nature, OA penetration rates have reached 73-90% in only three years….”

Policies regarding public availability of published research data in pediatrics journals | SpringerLink

Abstract:  Sharing research data is an increasingly necessary requirement for the advancement of science. The goal of this paper is twofold. First, to analyze the policies on openness in sharing scientific research data in a sample of pediatric journals and to determine whether there is any correlation with a journal’s impact factor; second, to determine if there have been changes in the opening policies from 2013 to 2016. Journals included in the Pediatrics area of the Journal Citation Reports were used for the analysis, with reference to the instructions to authors published on the journals’ websites. These instructions were revised in 2012 and in 2016. The majority of pediatric journals advise authors to deposit their data but do not provide specific instructions on how to do so. No correlation was found between the value of the impact factor of the journals and their open data policies. Deposit policies vary among publishing entities, with predominantly PubMed Central and repositories of clinical trials among those suggested for data deposit. Most pediatric journals recommend that authors deposit their data in a repository, but they do not provide clear instructions for doing so. No correlation was found between the value of a journal’s impact factor and the availability of open data. Policies regarding deposit in specific repositories vary among publishing entities, with PubMed Central and various clinical trial repositories being those primarily suggested for deposit.

Having a Social Impact: Supporting Social Justice and Open Access through Digital Initiative Projects

Abstract: Digital infrastructures and tools allow organizations and institutions to create opportunities for projects, information transfer, learning, and platforms for a range of voices. It also creates opportunities that promote open access, social justice, and social impact. Panelists who are directly involved in digital initiative projects that specifically seek to impact society, either by opening up information resources to everyone, or by giving people the digital resources they need to be self-supportive, will talk about their projects and the beliefs that underpin their efforts. From libraries, to online content providers, to digital skills educators, the panel represents a wide range of organizations that are employing digital initiatives for social good. Organizations participating in this panel discussion include three nonprofit organizations: the Catholic Research Resources Alliance, Digital Divide Data, and the Center for Bibliographical and Research Studies, UC-Riverside. 

Plan S and Open Access in Latin America: Interview with Dominique Babini

“Open Access publishing is more widespread in Latin America than in any other region of the world, and continues to grow. We sat down with CLACSO’s Open Access Advisor Dominique Babini to find out why….”

Repository optimisation & techniques to improve discoverability and web impact : an evaluation – Strathprints

Abstract:  In this contribution we experiment with a suite of repository adjustments and improvements performed on Strathprints, the University of Strathclyde institutional repository powered by EPrints 3.3.13. These adjustments were designed to support improved repository web visibility and user engagement, thereby improving usage. Although the experiments were performed on EPrints it is thought that most of the adopted improvements are equally applicable to any other repository platform. Following preliminary results reported elsewhere, and using Strathprints as a case study, this paper outlines the approaches implemented, reports on comparative search traffic data and usage metrics, and delivers conclusions on the efficacy of the techniques implemented. The evaluation provides persuasive evidence that specific enhancements to technical aspects of a repository can result in significant improvements to repository visibility, resulting in a greater web impact and consequent increases in content usage. COUNTER usage grew by 33% and traffic to Strathprints from Google and Google Scholar was found to increase by 63% and 99% respectively. Other insights from the evaluation are also explored. The results are likely to positively inform the work of repository practitioners and open scientists.

No Free Lunch — What Price Plan S for Scientific Publishing? | NEJM

“Open access to research articles is a goal that both scientists and the public will support. But eliminating subscription-based publication models without having alternatives in place that can reliably produce independently vetted, cautiously presented, high-quality content might have serious unintended consequences for the integrity of the scientific literature.”

Unpaywall extension adds 200,000th active user – Impactstory blog

“We’re thrilled to announce that we’re now supporting over 200,000 active users of the Unpaywall extension for Chrome and Firefox!

The extension, which debuted nearly two years ago, helps users find legal, open access copies of paywalled scholarly articles. Since its release, the extension has been used more than 45 million times, finding an open access copy in about half of those. …

However, although the extension gets the press, the database powering the extension is the real star. There are millions of people using the Unpaywall database every day:

  • We deliver nearly one million OA papers every day to users worldwide via our open API…that’s 10 papers every second!
  • Over 1,600 academic libraries use our SFX integration to automatically find and deliver OA copies of articles when they have no subscription access.
  • If you’re using an academic discovery tool, it probably includes Unpaywall data…we’re integrated into Web of Science, Europe PubMed Central, WorldCat, Scopus, Dimensions, and many others.
  • Our data is used to inform and monitor OA policy at organizations like the US NIH, UK Research and Innovation, the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Wellcome Trust, the European Open Science Monitor, and many others.

The Unpaywall database gets information from over 50,000 academic journals and 5000 scholarly repositories and archives, tracking OA status for more than 100 million articles. You can access this data for free using our open API, or user our free web-based query tool. Or if you prefer, you can just download the whole database for free….”

What bioRxiv’s first 30,000 preprints reveal about biologists

“Researchers posted more preprints to the bioRxiv server in 2018 alone than in the four previous years, according to an analysis of the 37,648 preprints posted on the site in its first 5 years.

The analysis also shows that the number of downloads from the site has topped 1 million per month. BioRxiv, which allows researchers in the life sciences to post preliminary versions of studies, turned five last November….

Preprints that are downloaded more often on bioRxiv tend to be published in journals with higher impact factors than preprints that are not downloaded as much….”

How Little People Can Be Invisible in the Open #cccert | Reflecting Allowed

My OER keynote was entitled “Hiding in the Open”. But now I am thinking how, there is also a story to be told about being “Invisible in the Open”. And for an Egyptian scholar living in Egypt, I am the most visible I can possibly be, with all my Virtually Connecting and blogging and writing and publishing everywhere… but clearly it’s not enough – and I am not just amplifying my own voice, but that of others around me, and then it makes an influence, an impact, but in the end… is almost invisible. Except to those in the same corner. But not the mainstream. And that sucks….”