“In 2020 European research paid for by the public purse has to be free to read. Matthew Cobb asks how open access is changing science publishing. Who are the winners and losers?”
“cOAlition S signals the commitment to implement, by 1 January 2020, the necessary measures to fulfil its main principle: ‘By 2020 scientific publications that result from research funded by public grants provided by participating national and European research councils and funding bodies, must be published in compliant Open Access Journals or on compliant Open Access Platforms’.
cOAlition S currently comprises 13 national research funding organizations and two charitable foundations from 13 countries who have agreed to implement the 10 principles of Plan S in a coordinated way, together with the European Commission and the ERC….
An implementation task force, led by John-Arne Røttingen (RCN) and David Sweeney (UKRI), will now collaborate with other stakeholders and work towards the swift and practical implementation of these principles….”
From Google’s English: “A new way of conceiving scientific research, open science, was born with the computer revolution. In the wake of Open Access (free access to the results of research funded by public money), it supports the great ideal of transparency that today invades all spheres of life in society. This book describes its origins, perspectives and objectives, and reveals the obstacles and obstacles to private profit and academic conservatism.
Bernard Rentier is a Belgian virologist. After an international career as a researcher, he became vice-rector ( 1997-2005 ) and then rector of the University of Liège ( 2005-2014 ). It has established an institutional repository system for scientific publications that has become a model of open access and is currently dedicated to promoting open science in all its implications for research and researchers….”
Abstract: We’ll define open educational resources (OER), examine the impact of OER use in higher education, discuss copyright and open licensing, and explore avenues for identifying existing OER that can be remixed and reused. The presentation will cover updates on federal and state OER initiatives and highlight support for open educational practices at UTA, including access to and technical support for Pressbooks, a web-based publishing platform.
“Scholarly publishing takes place in an institutional arena that is opaque to its practitioners. As readers, writers, reviewers, and editors, we have no clear view of the system within which we’re working. Researchers starting their careers receive (if they’re lucky) folk wisdom and mythology handed down from advisor to advisee, geared more toward individual success (or survival) than toward attaining a systemic perspective. They may learn how to get their work into the right journals or books, but often don’t learn why that is the outcome that matters for their careers, how the field arrived at that decision, and what the alternatives are – or should be. Gaining a wider perspective is important both for shaping individual careers and for confronting the systematic problems we face as a community of knowledge creators and purveyors.
This primer starts from the premise that sociologists, especially those early in their careers, need to learn about the system of scholarly communication. And that sociology can help us toward that goal. Understanding the political economy of the system within which publication takes place is necessary for us to fulfill our roles as citizens of the research community, as people who play an active role in shaping the future of that system, consciously or not. Responsible citizenship requires learning about the institutional actors in the system and how they are governed, as well as who pays and who profits within the field, and who wins or loses….”
“Never underestimate the power of one determined person. What Carole Cadwalladr has done to Facebook and big data, and Edward Snowden has done to the state security complex, the young Kazakhstani scientist Alexandra Elbakyan has done to the multibillion-dollar industry that traps knowledge behind paywalls. Sci-Hub, her pirate web scraper service, has done more than any government to tackle one of the biggest rip-offs of the modern era: the capture of publicly funded research that should belong to us all. Everyone should be free to learn; knowledge should be disseminated as widely as possible. No one would publicly disagree with these sentiments. Yet governments and universities have allowed the big academic publishers to deny these rights. Academic publishing might sound like an obscure and fusty affair, but it uses one of the most ruthless and profitable business models of any industry.
The model was pioneered by the notorious conman Robert Maxwell. He realised that, because scientists need to be informed about all significant developments in their field, every journal that publishes academic papers can establish a monopoly and charge outrageous fees for the transmission of knowledge. He called his discovery “a perpetual financing machine”. He also realised that he could capture other people’s labour and resources for nothing. Governments funded the research published by his company, Pergamon, while scientists wrote the articles, reviewed them and edited the journalsfor free. His business model relied on the enclosure of common and public resources. Or, to use the technical term, daylight robbery.
As his other ventures ran into trouble, he sold his company to the Dutch publishing giant Elsevier. Like its major rivals, it has sustained the model to this day, and continues to make spectacular profits. Half the world’s research is published by five companies: Reed Elsevier, Springer, Taylor & Francis, Wiley-Blackwell and the American Chemical Society. Libraries must pay a fortune for their bundled journals, while those outside the university system are asked to pay $20, $30, sometimes $50 to read a single article….”
“The major drawback of the development of OA is that, anticipating a reduction in profits if it prevails, the major publishers are now reversing the system and require a payment for publishing rather than for reading, through ‘article processing charges’ (APCs). Building on their prestige, they persuade researchers to publish in their journals, thus ensuring a monopoly on high-end scientific publishing. Worse still, publishers offer so-called ‘hybrid’ formulas, which allows them to keep selling their journals to readers while at the same time asking researchers to pay APCs for immediate free access to their articles, hence winning on both fronts. The cost of APCs has increased just as it has done for journal subscriptions over the past decades. In some cases, it has even increased by 30% yearly! Today, the struggle is less to provide free immediate access to knowledge in the least favoured countries but to prevent a situation where only wealthy researchers can afford to publish. This would be a highly discriminatory development which, after sight has been restored to a majority of the scientific community, deprives it of its voice. In addition, APC-OA stimulates predatory publishing.
The only way to counter this shift is to create publicly-run and free-access online publishing platforms, thus going back to the original ‘golden path’. Neither complicated nor new. Alongside ArXiv, other new publication platforms have also emerged in a variety of fields.
It remains for the scientific community worldwide to adhere to the new progressive principles of Open Science. In particular, the criteria for research assessment and the evaluation of researchers should no longer be based on an anti-scientific proxy: the publishers’ prestige….”
“In recent years, open access has steadily gained momentum. Most journals and publishers today have open access channels and authors have the choice to publish open access. However, many authors, particularly those who are relatively new to academia, are still in a haze about open access publishing. What is open access? What is the rationale behind publishing open access? What are the different venues for publishing open access? Such questions bother authors and they are often skeptical about publishing open access as there are several myths about open access. This article aims to clear all doubts and provide the fundamentals of open access publication….”