Statement by the European Public Health Association (EUPHA) on combatting COVID-19: the importance of sharing knowledge to create a comprehensive and publicly available evidence-base

The COVID-19 outbreak is affecting everyone worldwide, and policymakers, scientists and practitioners are exploring uncharted territory while trying to get to grips with this new virus. Especially in such times of great uncertainty, building on up-to-date and accurate information is crucial. Robust systems of epidemic intelligence that can provide solid national and regional-level epidemiological data to inform modelling of disease transmission at the population level, and ultimately offer effective guidance on public health action, are needed. Sharing data, research outcomes and experiences in order to build a common, growing body of intelligence is key when battling the outbreak and saving lives. Indeed, we see many examples of information being shared, across disciplinary, sectoral and geographical borders, contributing to new insights and accelerated generation of knowledge. EUPHA, as a science-based organisation, commends this open attitude, and calls upon all relevant authorities, organisations and experts to share evidence to the maximum extent possible.

Just One Giant Lab – Learning and Solving Together

“Just One Giant Lab (JOGL) is the first research and innovation laboratory operating as a distributed, open and massive mobilisation platform for collaborative task solving. JOGL helps humanity to sync onto fixing our most urgent and important problems using Open Science, Responsible Innovation and Continuous Learning. JOGL partners with academic labs, companies, startups, foundations, NGOs and public services to create participatory research programs for understanding and solving Health, Environmental, Social and Humanitarian issues….

Come challenge yourself by fostering humanity’s open knowledge and developing solutions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) defined by the United Nations!…

By making the process of contributing to solving important challenges accessible and valorizing for anyone, we want to multiply the number of contributors by 10 (from 5 millions to 50 millions) in 10 years, while making all produced knowledge, tools and methodologies universally open for use and adaptation….”

Coronavirus article free access ‘doesn’t go far enough’ | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Academics leading France’s push towards open access have said that publishers have not gone far enough in making coronavirus-related scientific articles free to read, as insights from all disciplines are potentially useful in the fight against the virus.

The French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation has already mandated that all relevant research and data be made publicly available, and said that it could take legal measures to ensure open access during the pandemic.

But what counts as a relevant publication is now being examined by the ministry, explained Serge Bauin, one of the leaders of the country’s open access push, as it seeks to understand how widely this order should apply….”

Coronavirus: France’s Scientific Publishers Mobilize; Access Copyright Donates Funds to Authors

“Against this dramatic and daunting backdrop, France’s publishers’ association, the Syndicat national de l’édition (SNE), is messaging the news media from Paris today that its scientific publishers and those of the National Federation of the Specialized Press (FNPS) are opening as quickly as possible all access to “their scientific publications, verified by professionals, contributing to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.” …

In a statement from its offices in Saskatoon, the Canadian copyright management agency Access Copyright has announced a donation of $100,000 (US$71,632) to bolster the work of the Canadian Writers’ Emergency Relief Fund….”

Covid-19, « Ouvrez largement l’accès aux publications scientifiques ! » / “Open access to scientifiic publications!” – Appel ADBU, Couperin, EPRIST aux éditeurs académiques | ADBU – Association des directeurs et des personnels de direction des bibliothèques universitaires

From Google’s English:  “To fight the pandemic, doctors and researchers have a crucial need to access all of the available scientific literature, too often subject to paid subscriptions.

Research laboratories and hospital services are currently setting up scientific and bibliographic monitoring cells to access publications and fundamental medical documentary resources to ensure patient care. Access to scientific literature is also essential for other audiences plagued by false information about the virus.

The Couperin.org consortium, ADBU and EPRIST join the press release from the international association ICOLC https://icolc.net/statement/statement-global-covid-19-pandemic-and-its-impact-library-services -and-resources and ask editors to open, in these exceptional circumstances, their publications to all, in order to face, united, an unprecedented global health crisis….”

The French National Fund for Open Science supports OpenCitations | OpenCitations blog

“The French National Fund for Open Science (FNSO) has decided to support OpenCitations, PKP, and DOAB as part of SCOSS, the Global Sustainability Coalition for Open Science Services.

FNSO has identified OpenCitations as an infrastructure disseminating bibliographic and citation metadata in open access with a level of quality and coverage that provides a workable, free and open alternative to the academic community’s current dependency on proprietary tools, therefore freeing up possibilities for citation analysis, promoting the evolution of bibliometric indicators and broadening knowledge of science.

The FNSO is contributing € 250,000, which is 16.3% of the amount that was requested under SCOSS and is committing to a political and technical partnership with OpenCitations….”

funding investigator for OPERAS infrastructure

“In the context of OPERAS-P project, dedicated to the structuration of the OPERAS infrastructure, and in collaboration with SPARC Europe, the investigator collects information on the existing funding mechanisms in the open scholarly communication landscape, more particularly in Social Sciences and Humanities. Resources collected (main information: types of funders, name of the organisation, infrastructures, projects) will lead to the design of a data model and the structuration of a knowledge base to be shared amongst OPERAS members and partners. This work takes place in the context of an international collaboration with the international consortium Invest in Open Infrastructure (IOI). First results have to be submitted by July 2020….”

funding investigator for OPERAS infrastructure

“In the context of OPERAS-P project, dedicated to the structuration of the OPERAS infrastructure, and in collaboration with SPARC Europe, the investigator collects information on the existing funding mechanisms in the open scholarly communication landscape, more particularly in Social Sciences and Humanities. Resources collected (main information: types of funders, name of the organisation, infrastructures, projects) will lead to the design of a data model and the structuration of a knowledge base to be shared amongst OPERAS members and partners. This work takes place in the context of an international collaboration with the international consortium Invest in Open Infrastructure (IOI). First results have to be submitted by July 2020….”

Open science: researchers advocate open access without constraints

From Google’s English: “Open science: researchers advocate open access without constraints 

The Couperin consortium publishes the results of its investigation into publication and open access by French researchers, carried out as part of the “Plan National for Open Science “announced by the Minister of Higher Education, of Research and Innovation in July 2018.

Unprecedented by its perimeter, by the number of respondents close to 12,000 and by their disciplinary variety, this survey makes it possible to draw some lessons on the perception of scientific communication current research by French researchers, mainly on publication in journals and their relationship to open access. Researchers are generally in favor of open access and understand the major issue: dissemination science results in a free way. However, this objective must be achieved for them without effort, in a simple, readable way and without direct funding from laboratories, all without shaking up too the landscape of traditional journals of their discipline to which they are attached. The contributions of scientific publishers, in particular the “big publishers” are sometimes criticized virulent: their excessive costs are pointed out by more than 85% of respondents. The need for evolution of publishing is allowed but must not be based on an increase in journal titles, resulting in over-information and a decline in the quality of research. The research evaluation criteria, in particularly those using impact factors, are also mentioned as obstacles to the development of scientific publishing. The peer review process remains a recognized tool in many disciplines to guarantee the quality of publications. However, it is considered insufficiently valued and little transparent. It should therefore change, in an internationalized and increasingly competitive context, where the evaluation of researchers through their publications would also evolve. Researchers would like to promote sustainable publishing, with ethical publishers, with an economic model virtuous. However, researchers are not prepared to take on additional efforts to adapt to the complexity of the publication process. Support on these questions could be beneficial. The usefulness of open archives, both institutional and thematic, as vectors for the dissemination of open science is well understood and their functions advanced, when they exist (CV, researcher pages) are appreciated. If the filing is considered simple and rapid for a majority of respondents in the archives many such as HAL, however, report that this should not be their task because they see it as purely administrative, uncorrelated from the process of scientific publication. The preprint archives are acclaimed by the researchers who deposit them, mainly in mathematics, computer science, physics and economics; in particular they use the chat functions around the articles. The fear of finding lower quality articles and the fact that preprints are not not peer-reviewed, still inhibits many communities from using them. Nevertheless, we see to emerge this possibility in new fields, like chemistry and life sciences….”

Results of the survey on the publication and open access practices of French researchers

From Google’s English:  “Couperin publishes the results of the survey on publication practices and open access by French researchers conducted in 2019. Unprecedented by the magnitude of its results (11,658 responses), it was able to reach around 10% of the scientific community. It covers their relationships with publishers as well as their uses of open archives or preprint servers  , as well as the sharing of their research data.”