bjoern.brembs.blog » Who’s responsible for the lack of action?

“There are regular discussions among academics as to who should be the prime mover in infrastructure reform. Some point to the publishers to finally change their business model. Others claim that researchers need to vote with their feet and change how they publish. Again others find that libraries should just stop subscribing to journals and use the saved money for a modern publishing system. Finally and most recently, people have been urging funding agencies to use their power to attach strings to their grant funds and force change where none has occurred….

We, the scientific community and all institutions supporting them, are all responsible for change.

The more relevant question is: who is in the strategically best position to break the lock-in-effect and initiate change?

Researchers decide if they evaluate colleagues on glamour proxies that deteriorate the reliability of science by valuing “novelty” above all else, or if they stand up and demand an infrastructure from their institutions that supports reliability, saves time and provides for an optimized workflow in which they can focus on science again, instead of being constantly side-tracked by the technical minutiae of reviews, meetings, submissions, etc.
Libraries decide how to spend their ~10b€ annually: on subscriptions/APCs in opaque and unaccountable negotiations, exempt from spending rules or on a modern infrastructure without antiquated journals and with a thriving, innovative market that allows them to choose among the lowest responsible bidders?
Funders decide whether to support scientists at institutions that fund monopolists and reward unreliable science, or those that work at institutions which spend their infrastructure and research funds in a fiscally responsible way to provide an infrastructure that preserves not only text, but data and code as well, ensuring the reliability and veracity of the results….”

Scholar-led Open Access Publishers Are Not “Author-Chutes” · punctum books

“Both Open Book Publishers (OBP) and punctum books recently shared publicly that their per-title cost for high-quality open access monographs hovers somewhere around the $6,000 mark. This number is markedly different from the findings of the the 2016 Ithaka report “The Costs of Publishing Monographs,” which found that open access monographs published by university presses cost between $30,000 and $50,000.

As both institutional libraries and funding bodies invested in a transition to a fully open access scholarly communications landscape are naturally seeking how best to spend their money in the public interest, it comes as no surprise that the disclosure of our numbers, and accompanying financial transparency, has elicited diverse responses from the scholarly publishing world….

Rather, we invite university publishers to transparently disclose their financial records, so that we can level the playing field and have a discussion on what is really important: how we can help the entire scholarly communications landscape to transition to a sustainably open and cost-efficient access model, with the freedom to read, write, edit, and publish, and where public knowledge is truly accessible to the public.”

Stony Brook University Author Perspectives on Article Processing Charges

Abstract:  INTRODUCTION The purpose of this study is to gain an understanding of Stony Brook University (SBU) author perspectives on article processing charges (APCs). Publishing an article without restrictions, also known as open access publishing, can be a costly endeavor. Many publishers charge APCs ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars to publish an article without access restrictions. Authors who cannot obtain funding from grant agencies or their institution must pay APCs on their own. Do APCs fundamentally impact how authors choose their preferred publication venues? METHODS A cross-sectional survey was designed to learn SBU author perspectives on, and concerns about, APCs. RESULTS Responses mainly came from the sciences. Many SBU authors preferred to publish in a prestigious journal or journal of their choice rather than in an open access journal. Most authors published their articles in open access journals even if they were required to pay APCs. Many authors found that it was difficult finding funding for APCs and some expressed their concerns about the double charging practice. DISCUSSION SBU authors might believe that publishing in established and prestigious journals could secure their career’s advancement. Authors who chose to pay open access journals with APCs might be following publishing criteria. Libraries can encourage authors to negotiate with publishers to obtain a discount or waiver of APCs, when possible. Institutions should negotiate shifting journal subscription costs toward hybrid open access publishing. CONCLUSION Data will be used to inform how the SBU Libraries can help authors locate funding opportunities for APCs.

 

Chinese researchers’ perceptions and use of open access journals: Results of an online questionnaire survey – Xu – 2020 – Learned Publishing – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  This paper reports the results of a survey on Chinese researchers’ perceptions and use of open access journals (OAJs). A total of 381 Chinese researchers from different universities and disciplines were investigated through an online questionnaire survey in August and September 2018. The results showed that most Chinese researchers are familiar with and have positive attitude to OAJs. They know OAJs mainly through their peers, colleagues, and friends. PubMed Central, PLoS, and COAJ (China Open Access Journals) are the most well?known OAJ websites among Chinese researchers. As for use, most of the respondents read and cite OAJs frequently and have experience of publishing in OAJs. However, they strongly prefer to use OAJs indexed in reputable databases (e.g. Web of Science, WoS) when making publishing decisions. Significant differences can be seen among disciplines, with researchers in HSS areas using OAJs less frequently than researchers from other disciplines, although they have the same positive attitudes and are equally well informed about them. Younger researchers preferred to rely on prestigious institutions and authors when using OAJs.

 

The costly prestige ranking of scholarly journals | Ravnetrykk

Abstract:  The prestige ranking of scholarly journals is costly to science and to society. Researchers’ payoff in terms of career progress is determined largely from where they publish their findings, and less from the content of their scholarly work. This fact creates perverted incentives for the researchers. Valuable research time is spent in trying to satisfy reviewers and editors, rather than spending their time in the most productive direction. This in turn leads to unnecessary long time from research findings are made until they become public. This costly system is upheld by the scholarly community itself. Scholars supply the journals with time, serving as reviewers and editors without any paycheck asked, even though the bulk of scientific journals are published by big commercial enterprises enjoying super profit margins. The super profit results from expensive licensing deals with the scholarly institutions. The free labour offered, on top of the payment for the licensing deals, should be viewed as part of the payment to these publishers – a payment in kind. Why not use this as a negotiating chip towards the publishers? If a publisher asks more than acceptable for a licensing deal, rather than walk away with no deal, the scholarly institutions could pull out all the free labour offered by reviewers and editors.

 

You can publish open access, but ‘big’ journals still act as gatekeepers to discoverability and impact | Impact of Social Sciences

“Publishing trial data in big journals such as The Lancet and BMJ might make the data far more ‘discoverable’, and thus enhance the potential impact of publicly-funded research. There might therefore be value for researchers, policy-makers and the public in a publishing model that combines full open-access publication (a must for publicly-funded research, surely) with selective additional publication in certain, select, influential subscription journals (while being aware that ‘salami slicing’ publication strategies do not necessarily represent ‘good practice’). …”

You can publish open access, but ‘big’ journals still act as gatekeepers to discoverability and impact | Impact of Social Sciences

“Publishing trial data in big journals such as The Lancet and BMJ might make the data far more ‘discoverable’, and thus enhance the potential impact of publicly-funded research. There might therefore be value for researchers, policy-makers and the public in a publishing model that combines full open-access publication (a must for publicly-funded research, surely) with selective additional publication in certain, select, influential subscription journals (while being aware that ‘salami slicing’ publication strategies do not necessarily represent ‘good practice’). …”

The R2R debate, part 5: what I actually think | Sauropod Vertebra Picture of the Week

“The venue of its publication can tell us something useful about a paper’s quality; but the quality of publication venues is not correlated with their prestige (or Impact Factor)….

The venue of its publication can tell us something useful about a paper’s quality; but the quality of publication venues is inversely correlated with their prestige (or Impact Factor).”

Staying with the Trouble: Designing a values-enacted academy | Impact of Social Sciences

“The prospecting practices of Academia.edu, ResearchGate, and Academic Analytics reinforce precisely such an impoverished conception of scholarship. The data they collect and ‘insights’ they provide foster an “analytics mindset” and obsession with self-branding. Academic Analytics, for its part, mines a “mother lode” of scholarly data independent of input from the scholars themselves, and presents this data to institutions of higher education in ways that represent, repackage, and reduce the quality of scholarly merit primarily to the quantity of scholarship produced. This data- and metrics-driven framework enables inter-institutional competition that has helped to create a toxic culture of self-interest and prestige. …”

Staying with the Trouble: Designing a values-enacted academy | Impact of Social Sciences

“The prospecting practices of Academia.edu, ResearchGate, and Academic Analytics reinforce precisely such an impoverished conception of scholarship. The data they collect and ‘insights’ they provide foster an “analytics mindset” and obsession with self-branding. Academic Analytics, for its part, mines a “mother lode” of scholarly data independent of input from the scholars themselves, and presents this data to institutions of higher education in ways that represent, repackage, and reduce the quality of scholarly merit primarily to the quantity of scholarship produced. This data- and metrics-driven framework enables inter-institutional competition that has helped to create a toxic culture of self-interest and prestige. …”