“We fully endorse the benefits of open research and recognize the recent announcements about Plan S as an important contribution to the conversation about the ongoing transition.
There is a wide range of views about how to move forward with open research across different parts of the global academic community, which means the debate about how it should develop needs a process of wide consultation, as happened with the UK’s Finch report on open access six years ago.
We believe there are a number of specific developments which could help open research and its longer-term sustainability, including areas we have been working on such as:
1) Wider adoption of new business models which have been put in place in some countries, particularly models allowing APC-free open access including read-and-publish deals;
2) Improvements to the hybrid journal model to support academic communities where a full transition to open access isn’t yet possible;
3) A community standard for a fair and balanced Green OA policy, with publishers supporting institutions to meet funders’ open access requirements;
4) Ensuring academic freedom for researchers about where they can publish….”
“ii. Define a clear transition path for hybrid journals to (Gold) OA. We suggest, in line with Stephan Kuster’s comment at the LERU meeting of October 2018, that to be compliant, the journal would need to be able to demonstrate it is transitioning within a 3-4 year period to fully gold OA by reporting on progress every year. iii. Provide clarity if and how green Open Access (OA) will be compliant. Green OA repositories seem to be endorsed only for preservation, not for OA itself. However, if compliant green OA is explicitly defined as unembargoed libre green OA, this is just as satisfactory as unembargoed libre gold OA, and this might incentivize publishers to hasten the transition of their journals to full gold OA. In this way, the value of repositories for OA itself can be acknowledged, not just for preservation and editorial innovation. iv. We strongly recommend that support for OA promised in Plan S infrastructure be public and open infrastructure, that is, platforms running on open-source software, under open standards, with open APIs for interoperability, owned or hosted by non-profit organizations. This should avoid infrastructure being acquired by large commercial publishers, which is a deliberate approach being taken to increase ownership of the whole scholarly communication ecosystem ….”
The review of the evaluation system of the research staff is essential to promote open science
ISGlobal co-organizes a B · Debate on open science in the Spanish context and in Europe Experts and experts, convened by B · Debate , an initiative of Biocat and Obra Social “la Caixa”, agreed that the review of the evaluation system of research personnel is essential to promote open science , a movement that promotes a science more accessible to everyone, that is effective, reproducible and transparent.
Currently, many times the evaluation of a researcher’s career continues to focus on the number of publications and the impact factor of the scientific journals where his articles appear. Different international movements have already underlined the importance of revising this system to improve the way in which the quality of the results and the impact of the research are evaluated , such as the San Francisco Declaration of Evaluation of Research . Apart from the quantity, the evaluation of the research must also take into account the quality….”
The new Plan S initiative by major national research funding agencies declares paywalled publishing venues unsuitable for their funded researchers. Still room is left for pay-to-publish barriers, where numerous problems have been documented.
Both initiatives still affect only tiny fractions of global academic publishing and we are currently very far from a large scale transition to cheaper more efficient models allowed by available technologies….”
“A global and multidisciplinary community of stakeholders came together in March 2018 to identify, scope, and prioritize a common vision for specific grand research challenges related to information science and scholarly communications. The participants were both traditional domain researchers and those who are aiming to democratize scholarship. An explicit aim of the summit was to identify research needs related to barriers in the development of scalable, interoperating, socially beneficial, and equitable systems for scholarly information; and to explore the development of non-market approaches to governing the scholarly ecosystem….”
“How to vet submitted manuscripts, how to reform the inefficient and in many ways corrupt, journal system, how best to limit costs; all are tricky questions. I offer no simple answers, but here are some suggestions as starting points for debate:
Consider abolishing the standard paper-journal structure. (The system I describe below also allows for aggregators to arise, selecting papers based on quality or interest area as a substitute for area-specific journals.)
Suppose that all submissions, suitably tagged with interest-area labels by the author, were instead to be sent to a central SUBMISSIONS repository. (A pirate site containing “scraped” published papers, Sci-Hub, already exists and there are already open access repositories where anyone can park files.)
Suppose there were a second central repository for prospective reviewers of the papers submitted to the first repository. Anyone who is interested in reviewing manuscripts ? usually but not necessarily a working scientist—would be invited to submit his or her areas of interest and qualifications to this REVIEWER repository.
Reviewing would then consist of somehow matching up manuscripts with suitable reviewers. Exactly how this should be done needs to be debated; many details need to be worked out. How many reviewers? What areas? How much weight should be given to matching reviewers’ expertise, in general, and in relation to the manuscript to be reviewed? What about conflict of interest, etc.? But if rules could be agreed on, the process could probably be automated.
Reviewers would be asked to both comment on the submission and give it two scores: (a) validity—are the results true/replicable? (b) Importance—a more subjective judgment.
If a reviewer detects a remediable flaw, the manuscript author should have the opportunity to revise and resubmit and hope to get a higher score.
Manuscripts should always be publicly available unless withdrawn by the author. But after review, they will be tagged with the reviewers’ evaluation(s). No manuscript need be “rejected.”
Employers/reviewers looking at material to evaluate for promotion, salary review, etc. would then have to decide which category of reviewed manuscript to count as a “publication.” Some might see this as a problem—for employers if not for science. But publishing unreviewed material is well accepted in some areas of scholarship. The NBER, for example, has a section called “Working Papers” which “are circulated prior to publication for comment and discussion.”
Interested readers can search the database of manuscripts by publication date, reviewers’ scores, topics, etc. in a more flexible and unbiased way than current reliance on a handful of “gatekeeper” journals.
This is not a finished proposal. Each of these suggestions raises questions. But one thing is certain: the present system is slow, expensive, and inadequate. Science needs something better….”
Abstract: The main contributors of scientific knowledge—researchers—generally aim to disseminate their findings far and wide. And yet, publishing companies have largely kept these findings behind a paywall. With digital publication technology markedly reducing cost, this enduring wall seems disproportionate and unjustified; moreover, it has sparked a topical exchange concerning how to modernize academic publishing. This discussion, however, seems to focus on how to compensate major publishers for providing open access through a pay-to-publish model, in turn transferring financial burdens from libraries to authors and their funders. Large publishing companies, including Elsevier, Springer Nature, Wiley, PLoS, and Frontiers, continue to earn exorbitant revenues each year—hundreds of millions of dollars of which now come from processing charges for open-access articles. A less expensive and equally accessible alternative exists—widespread self-archiving of peer-reviewed articles. All we need is awareness of this alternative and the will to employ it.
“As you have understood, open science can only be conceived as a comprehensive approach that integrates all facets of scientific activity. We can eventually achieve the figure of 100% of French scientific publications being available through open access. We must initiate processes to open research data to all, whenever it is reasonable, ethical and legal to do so. We must develop training courses, new tools and new services, or simplify and improve existing ones. But we must also be part of the global Open Science movement. I would like France to be a proactive leader in the field of open science, participating fully in its global reach. France supports, in particular, the initiatives of the European Union which, since 2012, has adopted voluntary policies with respect to open science. This is why we will support the “S plan” [Plan S] for open publications that ScienceEurope and Robert-Jan Smits have developed and which will be announced at the EuroScience Open forum (ESOF) Congress in Toulouse in the presence of Commissioner Carlos Moedas. We will thus be in sync with the implementation of the Conclusions of the May 2016 Competitiveness Council in full support of Commissioner Moedas’ Open Science agenda….”
“This draft report summarises the major findings and recommendations from the open science project conducted at the Centre for Innovation, Intellectual Property and Competition (CIIPC), National Law University, Delhi. Please send us your comments/ suggestions to ….”