E.P.A. to Limit Science Used to Write Public Health Rules – The New York Times

“The Trump administration is preparing to significantly limit the scientific and medical research that the government can use to determine public health regulations, overriding protests from scientists and physicians who say the new rule would undermine the scientific underpinnings of government policymaking….”

Different Goals, Different Strategies

“I think Michael Feldstein is directionally correct in his analysis of what has been happening to “open education” for the past several years. Without wading into the labeling fray (are we a movement? a coalition? a community? a field? a discipline?) I’d like to add a bit of my own perspective. Where Michael sees three groups with different goals, I see four groups who are trying to use OER to solve closely related – but ultimately very different – problems:

The negative impact on access to education caused by the high price of traditional learning materials
The negative impact on student success caused by limitations in the traditional publishing model
The negative impact on pedagogy caused by copyright-related constraints inherent in traditional learning materials
The negative impact on students caused by a wide range of behaviors related to the business models of traditional publishers….”

David Wiley steps down and adjourns the Open Education Conference

“Last weekend, at the Open Education Conference in Phoenix, David Wiley, chief academic officer of Lumen Learning and the conference’s organizer for 16 years, announced that this would be its last gathering, or at least the last with him at the helm. The conference, which grew from 40 attendees in 2003 to 850 this year, was a meeting place for advocates of open education, a sometimes hard-to-define goal that often involved the use of open educational resources — free, openly licensed digital textbooks.

“This is not a call for another person or organization to come forward to keep the same conference running the same way into the future. Rather, it’s a call to reset and start over,” Wiley wrote on his blog. “This reimagining must be owned by the community. It must be driven by the community. And it would be inappropriate for me to try to facilitate that process beyond extending a brief invitation.”…

The announcement prompted reactions across blogs and Twitter feeds, with some commentators saying that the announcement represented a fracturing of the tenuously aligned coalition of open education advocates. Michael Feldstein, chief accountability officer at e-Literate, wrote on his blog that differences in the goals and preferred tactics of open education advocates could no longer be bridged. Tensions within the “coalition” of open education supporters had become insurmountable, he wrote.

Many people in the coalition had different goals, Feldstein wrote, such as increasing access to education, improving educational quality or promoting the values of education. They also had different strategies, such as lowering the cost of instructional materials, increasing their quality or fostering autonomy for educators. As awareness and adoption of open educational resources has grown, so have tensions, he said….”

The Crumbling of the OpenEd Coalition –

“The OpenEd coalition has long consisted of (at least) three different groups with three different primary goals:

Increase access to education by lowering cost of curricular materials
Increase quality of education by increasing quality of curricular materials
Promote values of education by fostering autonomy for educators and agency for learners…

Depending on how you interpret and rank these three priorities, your beliefs about strategy and values could be quite different. And there have long been signs that, in fact, there were very serious tensions among the views and priorities of the coalition members.

In 2015, Phil Hill and I gave a joint keynote at the OpenEd conference in Vancouver. The theme of our talk was precisely that OpenEd was a brittle coalition that could fracture if the coalitional challenges were not addressed. Phil, in his part, talked about the challenge and opportunity that faculty surveys about OER demonstrated. There was a lot to be accomplished. My half of the talk was about my experience as a climate activist and how hard it is to build a coalition that holds together and accomplishes its goals over time (hint hint)….”

We have removed the Seal on more than 40 journals – News Service

“DOAJ constantly reviews existing records in DOAJ to ensure that they meet DOAJ criteria, particularly those with the Seal.

Recently 1432 journals in DOAJ had the Seal. Today that number is 1339. Journals that have been awarded the Seal adhere to outstanding best practice and meet to our 7 carefully chosen criteria. These criteria are indicators of high commitment to open access best practices.

In the last few weeks, we performed an in-depth review of the journals with the Seal to check they still comply with these criteria. After the review, we found out that 45 of the journals no longer met one or more of the criteria. We contacted all the journals in this situation and we are happy to communicate that we have already restored some of the Seals….”

Open access in an age of surveillance technology – erin rose glass

“The free, public exchange of knowledge, scientific and academic knowledge in particular, is precisely the aim of the open access movement. It is a noble goal, and given advances in computing technology and its availability, it is a more realistic goal than ever before. However, as the movement continues to grow, I think the open access movement should be looking very carefully at the way information is being managed, instrumentalized, shaped, and monetized in the broader information landscape. Because academic knowledge of course, is a species of information, and thus it will be subject to the same pressures and instrumentalization….”

Researchers concerned as tech giants choke off access to data | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Social scientists should be skipping through a data paradise, delving deeper than ever before into the workings of our parallel, online world using billions upon billions of likes, shares, comments and emojis.

But researchers are sounding the alarm that the opposite is happening. They fear that their freedom to access and study this global data explosion is being steadily narrowed by the social media companies and platforms that hold the information.

 

The restrictions means that academics – and by extension regulators, the public and politicians – have little idea what is really going on online, be it fake news, extremist propaganda or Russian disinformation….”

Researchers concerned as tech giants choke off access to data | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Social scientists should be skipping through a data paradise, delving deeper than ever before into the workings of our parallel, online world using billions upon billions of likes, shares, comments and emojis.

But researchers are sounding the alarm that the opposite is happening. They fear that their freedom to access and study this global data explosion is being steadily narrowed by the social media companies and platforms that hold the information.

 

The restrictions means that academics – and by extension regulators, the public and politicians – have little idea what is really going on online, be it fake news, extremist propaganda or Russian disinformation….”

A Crisis in “Open Access”: Should Communication Scholarly Outputs Take 77 Years to Become Open Access? – Abbas Ghanbari Baghestan, Hadi Khaniki, Abdolhosein Kalantari, Mehrnoosh Akhtari-Zavare, Elaheh Farahmand, Ezhar Tamam, Nader Ale Ebrahim, Havva Sabani, Mahmoud Danaee, 2019

Abstract:  This study diachronically investigates the trend of the “open access” in the Web of Science (WoS) category of “communication.” To evaluate the trend, data were collected from 184 categories of WoS from 1980 to 2017. A total of 87,997,893 documents were obtained, of which 95,304 (0.10%) were in the category of “communication.” In average, 4.24% of the documents in all 184 categories were open access. While in communication, it was 3.29%, which ranked communication 116 out of 184. An Open Access Index (OAI) was developed to predict the trend of open access in communication. Based on the OAI, communication needs 77 years to fully reach open access, which undeniably can be considered as “crisis in scientific publishing” in this field. Given this stunning information, it is the time for a global call for “open access” by communication scholars across the world. Future research should investigate whether the current business models of publications in communication scholarships are encouraging open access or pose unnecessary restrictions on knowledge development.

A Crisis in “Open Access”: Should Communication Scholarly Outputs Take 77 Years to Become Open Access? – Abbas Ghanbari Baghestan, Hadi Khaniki, Abdolhosein Kalantari, Mehrnoosh Akhtari-Zavare, Elaheh Farahmand, Ezhar Tamam, Nader Ale Ebrahim, Havva Sabani, Mahmoud Danaee, 2019

Abstract:  This study diachronically investigates the trend of the “open access” in the Web of Science (WoS) category of “communication.” To evaluate the trend, data were collected from 184 categories of WoS from 1980 to 2017. A total of 87,997,893 documents were obtained, of which 95,304 (0.10%) were in the category of “communication.” In average, 4.24% of the documents in all 184 categories were open access. While in communication, it was 3.29%, which ranked communication 116 out of 184. An Open Access Index (OAI) was developed to predict the trend of open access in communication. Based on the OAI, communication needs 77 years to fully reach open access, which undeniably can be considered as “crisis in scientific publishing” in this field. Given this stunning information, it is the time for a global call for “open access” by communication scholars across the world. Future research should investigate whether the current business models of publications in communication scholarships are encouraging open access or pose unnecessary restrictions on knowledge development.