Scholarly publishing and research dissemination in South Asia: some exemplary initiatives and the way forward

Abstract:  High costs associated with traditional print-based publishing have made open access publishing a popular way to improve research dissemination. Now several options and initiatives are enabling developing-world authors to attain equitable access to the scientific literature. However, little is known about the role of journals and initiatives from low- and middle-income countries in Asia regarding open access and their publication standards. Therefore, this article presents some exemplary initiatives to promote research dissemination in South Asia through open access and publishing standards of the regional journals. Such initiatives deserve wider recognition, especially when under taken by resource-limited countries, and international collaboration schemes hold the potential to build further on current achievements.

 

Scholarly publishing and research dissemination in South Asia: some exemplary initiatives and the way forward

Abstract:  High costs associated with traditional print-based publishing have made open access publishing a popular way to improve research dissemination. Now several options and initiatives are enabling developing-world authors to attain equitable access to the scientific literature. However, little is known about the role of journals and initiatives from low- and middle-income countries in Asia regarding open access and their publication standards. Therefore, this article presents some exemplary initiatives to promote research dissemination in South Asia through open access and publishing standards of the regional journals. Such initiatives deserve wider recognition, especially when under taken by resource-limited countries, and international collaboration schemes hold the potential to build further on current achievements.

 

Transformation: the future of society publishing | Zenodo

Abstract:  The release in September 2018 of Plan S has led many small and society publishers to examine their business models, and in particular ways to transform their journals from hybrids into pure Open Access (OA) titles. This paper explores one means by which a society publisher might transform, focused specifically on the institutional set-price Publish & Read package being developed by the Microbiology Society based on assessments of: the geographic diversity of our author and subscriber bases; trends in article numbers, article costs and revenues; the administrative complexity of the options; and the reputational and financial risks to the Society associated with the package. We outline the process we followed to calculate the financial and publishing implications of Publish & Read at different price points, and share our view that these kinds of packages are a stop on the way to new models of OA that do not rely on Article Processing Charges (APCs). Our hope is that in sharing our experience, we will contribute to a collective best practice about how to transform society publishing.The release in September 2018 of Plan S has led many small and society publishers to examine their business models, and in particular ways to transform their journals from hybrids into pure Open Access (OA) titles. This paper explores one means by which a society publisher might transform, focused specifically on the institutional set-price Publish & Read package being developed by the Microbiology Society based on assessments of: the geographic diversity of our author and subscriber bases; trends in article numbers, article costs and revenues; the administrative complexity of the options; and the reputational and financial risks to the Society associated with the package. We outline the process we followed to calculate the financial and publishing implications of Publish & Read at different price points, and share our view that these kinds of packages are a stop on the way to new models of OA that do not rely on Article Processing Charges (APCs). Our hope is that in sharing our experience, we will contribute to a collective best practice about how to transform society publishing.

 

Publishing Preprints : Nursing Research

“A lot has been written lately about preprints even though they are not new. Here at Nursing Research, we have had a few queries about publishing papers previously posted on preprint servers….

So yes, we support preprints with caveats and with the expectation that all research results are eventually rigorously peer-reviewed and published in high-quality format..”

Citation advantage for open access articles in European Radiology | SpringerLink

Abstract:  Objective

To investigate whether there is a difference in citation rate between open access and subscription access articles in the field of radiology.

Methods

This study included consecutive original articles published online in European Radiology. Pearson ?2, Fisher’s exact, and Mann-Whitney U tests were used to assess for any differences between open access and subscription access articles. Linear regression analysis was performed to determine the association between open access publishing and citation rate, adjusted for continent of origin, subspeciality, study findings in article title, number of authors, number of references, length of the article, and number of days the article has been online. In a secondary analysis, we determined the association between open access and number of downloads and shares.

Results

A total of 500 original studies, of which 86 (17.2%) were open access and 414 (82.8%) were subscription access articles, were included. Articles from Europe or North America were significantly more frequently published open access (p?=?0.024 and p?=?0.001), while articles with corresponding authors from Asia were significantly less frequently published open access (p?<?0.001). In adjusted linear regression analysis, open access articles were significantly more frequently cited (beta coefficient?=?3.588, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.668 to 6.508, p?=?0.016), downloaded (beta coefficient?=?759.801, 95% CI 630.917 to 888.685, p?<?0.001), and shared (beta coefficient?=?0.748, 95% CI 0.124 to 1.372, p?=?0.019) than subscription access articles (beta coefficient?=?3.94, 95% confidence interval 1.44 to 6.44, p?=?0.002).

Conclusion

Open access publishing is independently associated with an increased citation, download, and share rate in the field of radiology.

Disrupting medical publishing and the future of medical journals: a personal view – Gee – 2019 – Medical Journal of Australia – Wiley Online Library

“We strongly support the principle that research must be freely accessible. At the MJA [Medical Journal of Australia], we practise what we believe and make all research freely accessible from publication, a unique feature of a subscription journal. We further support the idea that subscription journals should ensure all peer?reviewed articles are freely accessible after an embargo period and suggest this period be set at no more than 24 months after final publication. We suggest that Plan S is off track in its opposition to hybrid journals. There are many metrics of quality and impact, including media (and social media) attention, but the primary currency by which research quality is judged remains citations by peers; major breakthroughs attract very high citations as the work is replicated then adapted and extended by others around the world, which is in reality how science advances and research is translated. Several of the journals with the greatest impact and highest citations will be excluded under Plan S if they maintain their current subscription models.

When it all boils down to basics, researchers want to have their research published quickly after peer and editorial review, with near perfect certainty in the most prestigious, most impactful place possible. In 2019, authors do not necessarily need a traditional subscription medical journal to achieve this goal, and if this spells the end of the subscription model, time will tell as the market decides. In the meantime and whatever our personal views, researchers will continue to seek to have their work widely read and cited, which is why the top medical journals (many of which remain subscription journals) will continue to attract the best research and will have a wide choice of what to accept….”

Transparent peer review and open data at Communications Biology | Communications Biology

“As of January 1st 2019, authors submitting manuscripts to Communications Biology can choose to publish the reviewer reports and author replies with their articles. The first articles with associated reviewer reports have now been published, representing an important step in our broader journey toward greater openness….

In addition, we ask that the data underlying plots and graphs in the main figures are available either in the supplementary materials or via an online generalist repository….Given the positive outcome of our trial, we are now making source data mandatory for published papers from today….”

Share or perish: Social media and the International Journal of Mental Health Nursing – McNamara – – International Journal of Mental Health Nursing – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  The impact of published research is sometimes measured by the number of citations an individual article accumulates. However, the time from publication to citation can be extensive. Years may pass before authors are able to measure the impact of their publication. Social media provides individuals and organizations a powerful medium with which to share information. The power of social media is sometimes harnessed to share scholarly works, especially journal article citations and quotes. A non?traditional bibliometric is required to understand the impact social media has on disseminating scholarly works/research. The International Journal of Mental Health Nursing (IJMHN) appointed a social media editor as of 1 January 2017 to implement a strategy to increase the impact and reach of the journal’s articles. To measure the impact of the IJMHN social media strategy, quantitative data for the eighteen months prior to the social media editor start date, and the eighteen months after that date (i.e.: from 01 July 2015 to 30 June 2018) were acquired and analysed. Quantitative evidence demonstrates the effectiveness of one journal’s social media strategy in increasing the reach and readership of the articles it publishes. This information may be of interest to those considering where to publish their research, those wanting to amplify the reach of their research, those who fund research, and journal editors and boards.

‘Broken access’ publishing corrodes quality

I’m passionately in favour of everyone having open access to the results of the scientific research that their taxes pay for. But I think there are deep problems with one of the current modes for delivering it. The author-pays model (which I call broken access) means journals increase their profits when they accept more papers and reject fewer. That makes it all too tempting to subordinate stringent acceptance criteria to the balance sheet. This conflict of interest has allowed the proliferation of predatory journals, which charge authors to publish papers but do not provide the expected services and offer no quality control.

The problem is not addressed, in my view, by the Plan S updates announced in May …

But I know of a fix, and I have seen it in operation. I propose a model in which journals compete not for libraries’ or authors’ money, but for funds allocated by public-research agencies. The major agencies should call for proposals, similar to research-grant applications. Any publisher could apply with its strategic plans and multi-year budgets; applications would be reviewed by panels of scientists and specialists in scientific publishing.

The number of papers published would then become one of a journal’s qualities that could be assessed rather than the clearest route to economic viability. Other assessable factors could include turnaround times, quality of searchable databases, durability of archiving, procedures to deal with fraud and retractions, innovations in cooperative peer review, and the option of post-publication review. Although the updated Plan S calls for many such factors to be reported openly, it does not provide any clear mechanism to reward their implementation.

I call my proposed approach Public Service Open Access (PSOA). It uncouples the publisher’s revenues from the number of papers published, removing incentives to publish low-quality or bogus science. Crucially, scientists would decide how to allocate resources to journals….

The journal that I have directed for the past four years, Swiss Medical Weekly, has functioned in this way since 2001. Readers don’t pay for access, authors don’t pay for publication and reviewers are paid 50 Swiss francs (US$50) for each report. The journal’s costs (roughly 1,900? Swiss francs for each published paper, although automated systems might lower costs in the future) are covered by a consortium of Swiss university and cantonal hospitals, the Swiss Medical Association, the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences and charities — which have evaluated our model and prioritized it over those of other publishers….

In the past, journals were only economically viable if their value was deemed worth their subscription fees, thereby collimating the publisher’s and the readers’ interest. A mechanism must be restored to align the financial interests of publishers with the research enterprise’s need for high-quality (rather than high-quantity) publications.”

Cost models for running an online open journal | Journal of Open Source Software Blog

The Journal of Open Source Software (JOSS) is a free, open-access online journal, with no article processing charge (APC). We are committed to operating as a free service to our community, and we do so thanks to the volunteer labor of editors and reviewers, and by taking advantage of existing infrastructure. In this post, we examine the true costs of running a journal such as JOSS, and make the case that even when considering all services we don’t currently pay for, the true cost per paper would not exceed $100. Current APCs at many “gold” open-access journals exceed that by one or more orders of magnitude, (see, for example, PNASNatureIEEE, etc.)…”