The European University Association and Science Europe Join Efforts to Improve Scholarly Research Assessment Methodologies

“Evaluating research and assessing researchers is fundamental to the research enterprise and core to the activities of research funders and research performing organisations, as well as universities. The European University Association (EUA) and Science Europe are committed to building a strong dialogue between their members, who share the responsibility of developing and implementing more accurate, open, transparent and responsible approaches, that better reflect the evolution of research activity in the digital era.

Today, the outcomes of scholarly research are often measured through methods based on quantitative, albeit approximate, indicators such as the journal impact factor. There is a need to move away from reductionist ways of assessing research, as well as to establish systems that better assess research potential. Universities, research funders and research performing organisations are well-placed to explore new and improved research assessment approaches, while also being indispensable in turning these innovations into systemic reforms….”

Rethinking impact factors: better ways to judge a journal

Global efforts are afoot to create a constructive role for journal metrics in scholarly publishing and to displace the dominance of impact factors in the assessment of research. To this end, a group of bibliometric and evaluation specialists, scientists, publishers, scientific societies and research-analytics providers are working to hammer out a broader suite of journal indicators, and other ways to judge a journal’s qualities. It is a challenging task: our interests vary and often conflict, and change requires a concerted effort across publishing, academia, funding agencies, policymakers and providers of bibliometric data.

Here we call for the essential elements of this change: expansion of indicators to cover all functions of scholarly journals, a set of principles to govern their use and the creation of a governing body to maintain these standards and their relevance….”

Altmetrics Come to OJS: Announcing the Paperbuzz Plugin | Public Knowledge Project

PKP is pleased to announce the release of the Paperbuzz Plugin for Open Journal System (OJS) versions 3.1.2 and above, built in cooperation with the Paperbuzzteam at Impactstory. This new plugin will bring free altmetrics (an alternative to traditional citation-based metrics) based on open data to thousands of OJS journals….”

Deal or No Deal | Periodicals Price Survey 2019

“Pressure increases on publishers to move more quickly to open access, but this leaves many questions unanswered

For the past decade, libraries have battled declining university budgets and increasing serials expenditures. With each Big Deal package renewal or cancellation, librarians and publishers have asked themselves: Did I make the best deal? Did I make the right deal? Recent developments in open access (OA) promise to bring major reform to academic publishing and, with that, new challenges and opportunities to the way that librarians and publishers choose to deal….”

What is the added value of a traditional publisher? | Research Information

The current dissatisfaction with scientific publishers is an obvious issue, with practices, such as ‘double dipping’ and services, such as the reprint servers, becoming the reason for the community to ask: what exactly is the added value of a traditional publisher? From our point of view, as a fully gold open access publisher and technology provider, there is an urgent need for publishers to demonstrate transparency, when it comes to forming their price policy, alongside a strong will to develop and adapt technologically together with the needs of the community. This is exactly why we have projects such as the Research Ideas and Outcomes (RIO) journal (www.riojournal.com), in our portfolio. RIO demonstrates our will to work towards true open science, where outputs along the full research cycle are published alongside the final peer-reviewed research article. These include research proposals, data, methods, negative results, presentation abstracts, software descriptions in a single research project collection. Opening the research cycle in this way does not only stimulate re-use and help researchers avoid duplication of work, but can also promote collaboration and interdisciplinarity. The real value to publish in RIO also comes from the fact that upon publication all these outputs become citable and discoverable. This functionality is, in fact, enabled on all our journals thanks to our publishing platform ARPHA, which is specifically developed to provide high level of automation and technologically advanced workflows, not only on terms of dissemination of archiving, but also for semantic enhancements of published content and integrations with industry’s leading service providers. …”

OpenUP Hub – OpenUP Policy Recommendations

“Open Access and Open Scholarship have revolutionised the way scholarly artefacts are evaluated and published, while the introduction of new technologies and media in scientific workflows has changed “how” and to “whom” science is communicated. The modes of interaction between the public and the scientific community are also changing due to the internet and social media. The OpenUP project studied key aspects and challenges of the currently transforming science landscape to provide a cohesive framework for the review-disseminate-assess phases of the research lifecycle that is fit to support and promote Open Science. OpenUP synthesised and validated key project results and derived five recommendations to foster the take-up of novel practices in scholarly peer review, research dissemination and assessment while considering existing gaps in evidence and disciplinary differences. …”

Attitudes toward Open Access, Open Peer Review, and Altmetrics among Contributors to Spanish Scholarly Journals

Abstract:  This paper aims for a better understanding of the perspectives of contributors to Spanish academic journals regarding open access, open peer review, and altmetrics. Specifically, it explores how age, gender, years of professional experience, and perception and use of social media influence authors’ opinions of these developments in scholarly publishing. A sample of 295 contributors to Spanish academic journals participated in a survey about the aforementioned topics. They were found to hold a favourable opinion of open access but were more cautious about open peer review and altmetrics. The responses of younger and female scholars indicated more reluctance to accept open peer review practices. A positive attitude toward social networks did not necessarily translate into enthusiasm for emerging trends in scholarly publishing. Despite this, ResearchGate users were more aware of altmetrics.

The insoluble problems of books: What does Altmetric.com have to offer?

Abstract Purpose: Analyze the capabilities, functionalities and appropriateness of Altmetric.com as a data source for the bibliometric analysis of books in comparison to PlumX. Methodology: We perform an exploratory analysis on the metrics the Altmetric Explorer for Institutions platform offers for books. We use two distinct datasets of books. On the one hand, we analyze the Book Collection included in Altmetric.com. On the other, we use Clarivate’s Master Book List, to analyze Altmetric.com’s capabilities to download and merge data with external databases. Finally, we compare our findings with those obtained in a previous study performed in PlumX. Findings: Altmetric.com combines and orderly tracks a set of data sources combined by DOI identifiers to retrieve metadata from books, being Google Books its main provider. It also retrieves information from commercial publishers and from some Open Access initiatives, including those led by university libraries such as Harvard Library. We find issues with linkages between records and mentions or ISBN discrepancies. Furthermore, we find that automatic bots affect greatly Wikipedia mentions to books. Our comparison with PlumX suggests that none of these tools provide a complete picture of the social attention generated by books and are rather complementary than comparable tools. Practical implications: This study targets different audiences which can benefit from our findings. First, bibliometricians and researchers who seek for alternative sources to develop bibliometric analyses of books, with a special focus on the Social Sciences and Humanities fields. Second, librarians and research managers who are the main clients to which these tools are directed. Third, Altmetric.com itself as well as other altmetric providers who might get a better understanding of the limitations users encounter and improve this promising tool. Originality/value: This is the first study to analyze Altmetric.com’s functionalities and capabilities for providing metric data for books and to compare results from this platform, with those obtained via PlumX.