ITcon paper: Scholarly journals in building and civil engineering – the big picture and current impact of open access [2018-19]

Abstract:  The publishing of scholarly peer reviewed journals has in the past 20 years moved from print to primarily digital publishing, but the subscription-based revenue model is still dominant. This means that the additional benefits of open access to all scholarly articles still remains a vision, despite some progress. A selection of 72 leading journals in building & construction was studied, in order to determine the current status in this subfield of engineering. Of the approximately 9,500 articles published yearly in these, only some 5,6 % are in the 11 full OA journals included, and a couple of percentage more are paid OA articles in hybrid journals. In most of the OA journals publishing is free for the authors. In terms of OA maturity, the field lags far behind the situation across all sciences, where at least 15 % of articles are in full OA journals. If OA is to become more important in our field, the growth is likely to come from major publishers starting new journals funded by author payments (APCs) or converting existing hybrid journals once they have reached a critical share of paid OA articles.

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Library celebrates C. Judson King’s new open access book on the University of California | UC Berkeley Library News

“The book is close to King’s heart for many reasons. During his time as UC provost, King helped launch both the California Digital Library, one of the world’s largest online libraries, and eScholarship, the University of California’s open access, electronic repository for publications by UC authors. King is passionate about the power of open access materials to strengthen scholarship and has made his book freely available online through eScholarship. The goal, King said, is to allow administrators in developing countries interested in building a university to access his book free of restraints….

King has experienced the role of open access publishing in spreading scientific knowledge firsthand. In 1980, King published a second edition of a seminal chemical engineering textbook he’d written on separation processes — operations that pull apart two or more chemicals in a mixture, like in the purification of seawater. After the book went out of print, King put it on eScholarship. Today, the book racks up 100 to 150 downloads per month on the digital platform, King said — which is equivalent to what it sold when it was brand-new. That highlighted for King the potential of open access publishing to help countless researchers around the world….”



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Healthcare Technology Letters now publishing as Gold Open Access – The IET

“The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has announced that from 2017, its rapid-publication journal Healthcare Technology Letters (HTL) will publish under a gold open access model. The journal will also increase in frequency from 4 issues to 6 issues per year. Launched in 2014, HTL was developed to provide a home for peer-reviewed, innovative and timely research in the multi-disciplinary area of healthcare technology. The switch to a fully open access model enables essential research in this fast moving field to be made freely available to anyone who wishes to read it and use it. Articles are also deposited immediately in PubMed Central, further increasing visibility and discoverability of research. Speaking of the announcement, Vincent Cassidy, Head of Academic Markets at the IET: said, “Open access continues to grow in popularity and is becoming increasingly mandated by both funding bodies and universities. By changing the publishing model of HTL to fully open access, we can help researchers comply more easily with these mandates whilst aligning with the overall mission of the IET to support the progression of research across all engineering disciplines.” …”

Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Recommends Open-Access Deposit for Faculty Review Process

“Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) is pleased to announce a pilot project recommending to faculty engaged in a review, promotion, or tenure process to use Harvard’s open-access repository DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard) as part of their preparations. There are two benefits. First, DASH will make the faculty member’s work more widely and easily accessible to potential participants in a review process. Second, it will provide open access to a larger part of the research output of SEAS faculty members.

SEAS is part of the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences, which unanimously adopted an open-access policy in 2008, asking faculty to deposit their new scholarly articles in DASH. SEAS strongly supports this policy and sees this program as one more incentive to help implement the policy. This recommendation does not change the review, promotion, and tenure criteria or standards at SEAS, and preserves faculty freedom to submit scholarly work to the publishers of their choice.”