Supporting the Changing Research Practices of Agriculture Scholars | Ithaka S+R

“The issue of cost also factors into interviewees’ approach to making their peer-reviewed publications available via open access. When asked about whether their publications are available via open access, many interviewees focused on the cost of gold open-access models.[15] These interviewees highlighted that while they are generally supportive of open access, the cost of making their articles open access through the journals they publish in is prohibitively high, especially since they are expected to publish multiple articles per project and per year. A typical response by an interviewee: “I am all for the open access. That’s good but I have mixed feelings because you have to pay to get your paper published… That’s a lot of money and my lab can publish around twenty papers a year. I tell my students to please find a free journal. If it is open access where is my money?” Some had built those costs into their grants or had qualified for funds made available for that purpose by their institution, but others noted that money is already such a concern that they didn’t perceive it as prudent to allot costs towards open access or that institutional funds were not available. As the same interviewee highlighted, “Yes you can use grants to get it published, but you have to make the cuts somewhere else to make it work. …When I first came the department would pay for publication but now the department cannot afford it.”


Interviewees rarely reported deliberately seeking out green open access peer-reviewed publications, which reflects that other considerations such as reputation and scope are generally more important. Interviewees also reported low participation in their institutional repositories as a mechanism for making their publications open access, with some being unaware of such programs or perceiving the participation as too onerous. Some recognize that they may be required in the future to deposit their publications in an appropriately designated repository as a condition of receiving government funding, but the majority had not yet experienced such a requirement. Those who have reported that they deposited did so because non-agriculture-specific agencies, such as the National Institute of Health, required it. Others conflated open access and institutional repositories with academic social networking sites (discussed in further detail below)….”

International Survey of Research University Leadership: Views on Supporting Open Access Scholarly & Educational Materials

“This report looks closely at the attitudes on open access of a sample of 314 deans, chancellors, department chairmen, research institute directors, provosts, trustees, vice presidents and other upper level administrators from more than 50 research universities in the USA, Canada, the UK, Ireland and Australia.  The report gives detailed information on what they think of the cost of academic journal subscriptions, and how they understand the meaning of the term “open access.”  The study also gives highly detailed data on what kind of policies the research university elite support or might support in the area of open access, including policies such as restricting purchases of very high-priced journals, paying publication fees for open access publications, mandating deposit of university scholarship into digital repositories, and developing open access educational materials from university resources. 

Just a few of the report’s many findings are that:

  • The lowest percentage considering the high cost of journals a big problem was in the United States, where only 11.56% of higher education leadership had this opinion; the highest share, in Canada, 27.45% had this view.
  • More than 40% of administrators from public universities in the sample supported the idea of using university funds to develop open access textbooks from materials developed or owned by the university or its scholars.
  • Support for mandatory deposit requirements for scholarly output into university digital repositories was highest among the universities ranked in the top 41 worldwide.

Data in the report is broken out by country, university ranking, work title, field of work responsibility, level of compensations, age, gender and other variables.”

The challenge of open access compliance

“Researchers at UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) are now subject to HEFCE’s open access policy if they want to submit their work to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) in 2021. The policy applies to journal articles and conference proceedings accepted for publication after 1 April 2016. These research outputs must be deposited in an institutional or subject repository as soon as possible after the point of acceptance. For the first two years of the policy there is flexibility to deposit up to three months after the date of early online publication. After April 2018, it is anticipated that the policy terms will become stricter and deposit must occur within three months of acceptance….The financial costs associated with supporting compliance with the policy are high. Many HEIs initially relied heavily on their Research Councils UK funding to meet staffing costs. Over time, institutions have taken on staff costs to ensure the longevity of their open access teams, and some have even been in a position to create institutional funds for gold open access. At a time when increasing subscription costs are regularly imposed by publishers it can be difficult for institutions to find the means to support open access, despite its obvious importance. The cultural challenges associated with the HEFCE policy can prove to be even more difficult to overcome….After three years of promotion and engagement with researchers through school board meetings, research support meetings, training sessions and online support materials, attitudes have gradually shifted towards support for open access. Following a review of 2016, we discovered that 93% of the papers in our repository that are subject to HEFCE’s policy are REF eligible. This positive trend has continued into 2017 with many more papers being deposited on a daily basis….”

ORCID Community Survey 2017

“We invite you to participate in our second community survey. Your responses will help us better understand what you think about ORCID and to prioritize what user features we include in our roadmap planning for the next 1-2 years.

We also will be using your responses to help us clarify ORCID training and support materials. My role as Education and Outreach Specialist is to audit, review, and update our help and support materials so that you can quickly find the information you need.  Your feedback will help us to restructure ORCID’s help webpages, to develop an ORCID curriculum to identify learning paths for different audiences, and to create new outreach resources for use by ORCID members, ambassadors, and other advocates….”

Institutional repository: access and use by academic staff at Egerton University, Kenya: Library Management: Vol 38, No 4/5

Abstract:  Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the access and use of the institutional repository (IR) among academic staff at Egerton University.


The paper provides a description of the building and development of the IR at the Egerton university and describes expected benefits of the repository to the University and relevant stakeholders. A survey was conducted among 84 academic staff with an aim of examining their levels of awareness on the existence of the IR at the Egerton University and assess their access and use. Through a structured questionnaire both quantitative and qualitative data were collected.


The study revealed that majority of the academic staff at the Egerton University are still not aware of the existence of the IR. Staff also faced challenges in accessing and using the content available. The paper provided suggestions on how best to enhance the access and utilization of the IRs among the academic staff.

Practical implications

From a practical point of view, the paper provides implications on the access and use of IRs by the academic staff. The paper points out some challenges faced by this group of users which other academic institutions may try to solve in their respective contexts.


Findings and discussions provided in the paper will pave way to solving the challenges faced in access and use of IR by the academic staff at the Egerton University.

Miles to go for Scholarly Commons to become a global academic norm | Practising Development

“It is not enough to encourage researchers in the Tripuras and Thai Nguyens of the world today to share their research data and outputs in the public domain. The national, institutional and collegial environments in developing countries put excessive pressure on researchers to focus on publishing – and getting published is not easy. So it’s not surprising that scholarly commons principles – such as maximizing the transparency and accessibility of research data – are not primary concerns.

It is essential, therefore, to make a case at the level of national university commissions or at least institutions, where academic structures and guidelines are put in place. It is also essential to influence policymakers and research funders to promulgate new approaches to research communication.

Making Scholarly Commons a global academic norm is not an easy journey and the going will be slow. But to begin with, it is imperative that we start convening and listening in diverse places around the world if we believe that research communication should be an open, well-connected artifact of humankind that helps us all progress.”

Wellcome Open Research author survey results | Wellcome Open Research Blog

“Author survey shows that publication speed and the ability to share a variety of research outputs are the primary reasons why authors publish on the Wellcome Open Research publishing platform. Michael Markie, Publisher at F1000 and Robert Kiley, Head of Open Research, Wellcome discuss the survey results and what actions will taken based on them.”

Sharing Data and Materials in Psychological Science – Apr 17, 2017

“Psychological Science is now introducing some minor changes designed to increase the frequency and ease with which editors and reviewers of submissions can access data and materials as part of the peer-review process. I anticipate that, in addition to enhancing the review process, these changes will further increase the percentage of Psychological Science articles for which researchers can quickly and easily access data and materials postpublication. The changes we are introducing are tweaks and nudges, not radical shifts. In the following, I explain the changes and why they are worth undertaking.”

Ready for the future? A survey on open access with scientists from the French National Research Center (CNRS)

“All survey results converge towards the fact that the researchers have generally accepted the idea of open access and that they consider it as globally beneficial for their field, even if their information and publishing behaviour may be somewhat delayed. In Europe, 461 research organisations and funders have adopted open access mandates and policies that require or request their researchers to provide open access to their peer-reviewed research article output by depositing it in an open access repository7 ; many have signed national or international statements on open access, such as the Berlin Declaration. Both, individual awareness and uptake and institutional, political commitment are crucial for the further progress of open access.

Senior researchers, especially research managers and directors of research centres, are key stakeholders in this process in two ways:

  • They are appointed by their peers, coordinate the research activities and represent their colleagues in the executive and advisory bodies; as such, they act as a kind of transmission belt of the researchers’ opinions and demands, including reporting (bottom-up).
  • At the same time, they stand for the research organisation and are the guardians of the application of institutional decisions and rules within the local laboratory, including supervision, follow-up and control (top-down).

This intermediary or middle function may not always be an easy situation, as a latent source of conflict, but it makes them particularly interesting and influential as opinion leaders and even as potential models for good practice. For this reason, instead of a new assessment of scientists’ attitudes and behaviours towards open access, the CNRS conducted an exploratory survey on Scientific and Technological Information (STI) specifically at the senior management level, i.e. the directors of the CNRS research units (laboratories). One part of this survey was about open access. Our paper reports the survey results on open access, in particular to obtain answers to four questions:

  1. Do the CNRS senior research managers (laboratory directors) share the positive opinion towards open access revealed by recent studies with researchers from the UK, Germany, the United States and other countries? Are they supportive of open repositories and OA journal publishing?
  2. Does their information behaviour, i.e. use and production of open access publications, meet the challenge of open access or does it lag behind their opinions?
  3. Like in other studies, will this survey identify a group of unaware or even reluctant senior research managers not interested in open access?
  4. And finally, what can be said about differences between scientific disciplines?”