2nd HIRMEOS Webinar: A Peer-review Certification System for Open Access Books – Hirmeos Project

The webinar is aimed at presenting the peer-review certification service developed in the course of the HIRMEOS project.

Peer-review has a critical importance in scholarly communication, but both its practices and understanding exhibit a great deal of opacity. This is especially true for the peer review processes concerning open access monographs.

The HIRMEOS Open Book Peer-Review Certification service is a response to the increasing need for transparency and a better understanding of book peer review processes. The certification system, developed in collaboration with the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB), provides a convenient way to reassure authors and evaluation agencies about the scientific quality of Open Access books. In the webinar, we are going to introduce this service to different communities by bringing together the perspectives of scholars, publishers, developers and librarians. …”

DOAB Foundation Press Release

OAPEN Foundation (Netherlands) and OpenEdition (France) are pleased to announce the creation of DOAB Foundation as a joint venture between the two partners. The mission of the new foundation is to provide an independent and trustworthy Directory of Open Access Books to the academic community and the general public.

 

  • DOAB was developed in 2012 by OAPEN as a dedicated discovery service for OA books, next to the existing OAPEN Library. Since then, the directory became one of the fastest growing OA resources, and now indexes more than 16,500 open access books from 315 publishers worldwide.
  • In 2012, OAPEN and OpenEdition partnered in DILOH. This is a project funded by the French government under the “investissement d’avenir” label to enable the French academic production in social sciences and humanities reach an international audience and support the development of DOAB.
  • In 2017 OAPEN and OpenEdition partnered with eight other parties in HIRMEOS, a project funded by the European Commission under the framework “Horizon 2020” to develop innovative services for open access books. In HIRMEOS, OAPEN and OpenEdition worked together to add a Certification service on peer review to DOAB.
  • In 2018, the French Minister of Research Frédérique Vidal adopted a National Plan for Open Science and included in the Plan’s action points, the creation of the Franco-Dutch foundation.
  • On the 5th of March 2019, DOAB was established as a foundation under Dutch law, in co-ownership between OAPEN Foundation and OpenEdition, legally represented by CNRS and Aix-Marseille University, its governing institutions….”

In support of open infrastructures: A statement from OPERAS in response to the ‘Open Research Library’, a new initiative from Knowledge Unlatched

On May 16, Knowledge Unlatched (KU) launched a new hosting platform for Open Access monographs, the Open Research Library (ORL). Notwithstanding its name, we do not consider the Open Research Library to qualify as an open infrastructure.

In support of open infrastructures: A statement from OPERAS in response to the ‘Open Research Library’, a new initiative from Knowledge Unlatched – OPERAS

On May 16, Knowledge Unlatched (KU) launched a new hosting platform for Open Access monographs, the Open Research Library (ORL). Notwithstanding its name, we do not consider the Open Research Library to qualify as an open infrastructure.

The statement from KU opens as follows:

“Free access to scientific content is often limited due to the fragile technical infrastructure around it: content is stored in a variety of versions at various locations and without any uniform search functionalities. The Open Access initiative Knowledge Unlatched has addressed this growing problem and is now launching the Open Research Library together with several international partners. Its goal is to unite all Open Access (OA) book content over the coming months. To this end the Open Research Library is working with publishers and libraries worldwide and is open to all providers and users of quality-assured research content.”

While we can agree with the observation that ‘free access to scientific content is often limited due to the fragile infrastructure around it’, we do not think this initiative is helpful in strengthening the Open Access infrastructure for monographs.

OPERAS, the European Research Infrastructure dedicated to open scholarly communication in the Social Sciences and Humanities, supports the Principles for Open Scholarly Infrastructures: infrastructures should be open, transparent, sustainable, and community-governed. OPERAS is dedicated to develop a distributed research infrastructure in close collaboration with the scholarly community, in accordance with these principles. OPERAS has demonstrated its support of these principles in various projects:

  • the HIRMEOS project, a collaborative project of five European book publishing platforms to develop a shared set of added value services, in order to make these available to the scholarly community and enable integration with the open science ecosystem;
  • the development of the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB) as a central platform to improve transparency and quality assurance around Open Access monographs;
  • the upcoming, recently funded project TRIPLE, an innovative discovery service aimed at increasing the discovery, access, reuse and societal impact of Social Sciences and Humanities artefacts (data, publications and projects).

In our opinion, the ORL does not meet the criteria for open infrastructures. On the contrary, based on the statement from KU and the early release of the ORL, the approach of this platform closely resembles well-known internet strategies to quickly achieve a dominant position by aggregating all available content and offering a free service to the community, while aiming for a lock-in of users and stakeholders. The ORL is neither open nor transparent, in particular regarding its governance.

While we are not against commercial ventures or market competition, we strongly believe that vital infrastructures supporting Open Science should not fall in the hands of commercial operators. These infrastructures should be a collective responsibility of stakeholders in scholarly communication. We see SCOSS and the recent launch of the IOI initiative as positive signs that this collective responsibility can become a reality. With this in mind, we think that the ORL is not helpful, and could well be harmful, on the road to establishing a distributed, open and sustainable infrastructure for Open Access monographs.


This statement is the outcome of an open consultation with the OPERAS Core Group. 20 May 2019.

PUBLISHING OPEN ACCESS BOOKS. AN AUTHOR’S PERSPECTIVE

“Join the DOAB and De Gruyter on Monday, 4th March, to find out what it takes to publish a book in OA. The webinar will focus on the editorial process, funding and promotion strategies that turn a submitted manuscript into a well-cited open access book. This webinar is designed to help authors understand the OA conundrum and to equip them with the knowledge needed to effectively publish a book in open access.

  • OA Books – Why OA for Books? Citation, downloads and global reach
  • Book Funding: Where to find it?
  • Fast Track to Publishing: OA Publishing Times
  • Open Access Book: How to make sure the title is visible, discovered and cited?
  • Directory of Open Access Books: Why it matters for a book to be rapidly indexed?…”

Panelists Discuss New Developments in Open Access Monographs for OASPA and Knowledge Exchange Webinar – OASPA

Eelco Ferwerda (OAPEN), Lucy Montgomery (Knowledge Unlatched Research), and Christina Emery (Springer Nature) recently joined OASPA and Knowledge Exchange for a webinar to discuss new developments in Open Access monographs in the humanities and social sciences. Jeroen Sondervan (Knowledge Exchange) chaired the discussion. The Copyright Clearance Center hosted the webinar. Leyla Williams, Events and Communications Coordinator at OASPA, reflects on the discussion.

A recording of the webinar is available at:

https://oaspa.org/information-resources/oaspa-webinars/

Current situation

“A chronological overview of important Dutch open access and open science successes….”