Article visibility: journal impact factor and availability of full text in PubMed Central and open access

Abstract:  Both the impact factor of the journal and immediate full-text availability in Pubmed Central (PMC) have featured in editorials before.1-3 In 2004, the editor of the Cardiovascular Journal of Africa (CVJA) lamented, like so many others, the injustice of not having an impact factor, its validity as a tool for measuring science output, and the negative effect of a low perceived impact in drawing attention from publications from developing countries.1,4

Since then, after a selection process, we have been indexed by the Web of Science® (WoS) and Thomson Reuters (Philadelphia, PA, USA), and have seen a growing impact factor. In the case of PMC, our acceptance to this database was announced in 2012,2 and now we are proud that it is active and full-text articles are available dating back to 2009. The journal opted for immediate full open access (OA), which means that full-text articles are available on publication date for anybody with access to the internet.

Implementing a Public Access Policy: A Guide for HRA Member Organizations; and HRA Member Public Access Policy Template

“To assist HRA [Health Research Alliance] member organizations wishing to adopt a public access policy, the HRA Public Access Task Group partnered with the National Library of Medicine (NLM) to enable HRA member-funded awardees/grantees* to deposit their publications into PubMed Central (PMC)….The following is a template developed by the HRA Public Access Task Group in conjunction with the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) that can be used by organizations seeking to implement public access policies as a condition of award funding. This template is based on the policy developed by HRA member organization, Autism Speaks. …”

Health Research Alliance

“The Health Research Alliance, a collaborative member organization of nonprofit research funders, is committed to maximizing the impact of biomedical research to improve human health….The HRA partnered with the National Library of Medicine (NLM) to enable HRA member-funded awardees to deposit their publications into PubMed Central (PMC) with an embargo no longer than 12 months….”

Some evidence for the demand for research literature by nonprofessionals A r…

“A recent tweet from @openscience…

https://twitter.com/openscience/status/887568932344799232

…asked me to support my claim in a 2012 interview that “more than 40 percent of the visitors to PubMed Centralcome from non-.edu domains.”

https://journalistsresource.org/tip-sheets/research/digital-access-knowledge-research-chat-harvard-peter-suber

I’m glad to. But the answer is too long for Twitter, or at least I’d like to say more about it than I can fit in a tweet. So I’m giving it here….”

The NIH Public Access Policy (April 2012)

“NO HARM TO PUBLISHERS IS EVIDENT: • Publishers retain up to a 12?month embargo on NIH?funded papers before they are made available to the public without charge under fair use principles. • The Public Access requirement took effect in 2008. While the U.S. economy has suffered a downturn during the time period 2007 to 2011, scientific publishing has grown: – The number of journals dedicated to publishing biological sciences/agriculture articles and medicine/health articles increased 15% and 19%, respectively.5 – The average subscription prices of biology journals and health sciences journals increased 26% and 23%, respectively.6 – Publishers forecast increases to the rate of growth of the medical journal market, from 4.5% in 2011 to 6.3% in 2014.7 …

KEY FACTS ABOUT PMC: • Over 2.4 million articles are now in PMC. In addition to the NIH?funded papers deposited into PMC, publishers voluntarily deposit more than 100,000 papers per year. • Every weekday, 700,000 users access the database, retrieving over 1.5 million articles. • Based on internet addresses, an estimated 25% of users are from universities, 17% are from companies, and 40% from the general public …”

Policy on Open Access | Cancer Research UK

“Our open access policy

As a CRUK-funded researcher, we:

  • Require electronic copies of any research papers that have been accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, and which acknowledge CRUK funding, to be made available through Europe PubMed Central(link is external) (Europe PMC) as soon as possible and no later than 6 months after publication.

  • Encourage you to select publishing routes that ensure the work is available immediately on publication in its final published form, wherever such options exist for their journal of choice and are compliant with our policy*.

  • Encourage, and where an article processing charge is paid, require, you to license research papers using the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC-BY)(link is external)**, so they may be freely copied and reused (for example, for text- and data-mining purposes), providing that the original authors are properly credited. …”

National Library of Medicine Announces Departure of NCBI Director Dr. David Lipman

“The National Library of Medicine today announced the departure of David J. Lipman, MD, who has served as the Director of the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) since its creation almost 30 years ago….

NCBI creates and maintains a series of databases relevant to biotechnology and biomedicine, and is a world-renowned and trusted resource for bioinformatics tools and services. Major NCBI databases include GenBank for DNA sequences and PubMed, one of the most heavily used sites in the world for the search and retrieval of biomedical information.

 “It’s hard to think of anyone at NIH who has had a greater impact on the way research is conducted around the world than David Lipman,” noted NLM Director Patricia Flatley Brennan, RN, PhD. “Under his visionary leadership, NCBI has greatly improved access to biomedical information and genomic data for scientists, health professionals, and the public worldwide—something we now practically take for granted.”…Dr. Lipman has been an advocate for promoting open access to the world’s biomedical literature and launched PubMed in 1997, followed by the full-text repository, PubMed Central (PMC), in 2000.   He was instrumental in implementing the NIH Public Access Policy whereby NIH-funded papers are made publicly available in PMC….”

ScienceOpen is a resource for the community – ScienceOpen Blog

“We harvest content from across platforms like PubMed Central, arXiv, SciELO and bring it all together in one place

One of the main features of ScienceOpen is that we are a research aggregator. We don’t select what we index based on discipline, publisher, or geography, as that just creates another silo. Enough of those exist already. What we need, and what we do, is to bring together research articles from across publishers and other platforms and into one space, where it is all treated in exactly the same way….”

?enay Kafkas, Text Miner in Literature Services | European Bioinformatics Institute

“I am a text mining specialist in the Literature Services team of EMBL-EBI. My team runs and maintains the Europe PMC database, an archive of life-science literature. Our job is to make it easy for researchers to find articles and information they need. 

I contribute to the development of the text mining infrastructure of the database. My colleagues and I develop methods to annotate articles and design searches by indexing articles based on specific search fields. We are a service-oriented team and work closely with the users to make researchers’ lives easier….”

Not-for-Profit Publishers Call New NIH Rule a Missed Opportunity

“The final National Institutes of Health (NIH) rule on Enhanced Public Access to NIH Research Information is wasteful of federal research dollars and a missed opportunity to take advantage of available technology and existing efforts, according to a group of the nation’s leading not-for-profit medical and scientific publishers. The final rule ignores significant free access policies already existing in the not-for-profit publishing community that offer more cost-effective public access to the science in their journals.

 

NIH’s new rule requests but does not require authors to deposit into PubMedCentral (PMC) manuscripts of articles reporting NIH-funded research that have been peer reviewed and accepted by journals for publication.  NIH would release these manuscripts to the public within 12 months or less after publication in the journal.  The timing of the release would be determined by the authors, who “should ensure that their PMC submissions are consistent with any other agreements, including copyright assignments,” according to the NIH statement.

 

These publishers believe that NIH should take advantage of the fact that most not-for-profit publishers currently make all their content—not just NIH supported articles—available for free to the public within 12 months.  Not-for-profit publishers believe that the public would be better served if NIH created an enhanced search engine that works like Google to crawl the journals’ full text articles and link to the final published articles residing on the journal websites. This would offer significantly more assistance to those seeking medical research results than a database of NIH-funded manuscripts can provide. This public-private partnership would be much less costly to NIH and would avoid the confusion that would result from publishing two different versions of the same article—an unedited version on PubMed Central and the final version in the journal….”