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….”

An inside guide to eLife digests | eLife

“So, what is the point of eLife digests? Firstly, we see digests as part of a wider effort to make original research as open and accessible as possible. Being an open-access journal means that anyone (with an Internet connection) can freely read articles published in eLife. The digests should mean that the majority of those readers can also learn something about the latest research results reported in the journal, regardless of their background.

Secondly, eLife is a journal with a broad scope and eLife digests are one small way that we can help to foster interdisciplinary research. A plant biologist with decades of experience in research, for example, is unlikely to also be an expert in neuroscience (and vice versa). By explaining the findings of a paper in plain language, we hope that digests will help other scientists to identify new connections between different scientific disciplines….”

The Landscape of Research Data Repositories in 2015: A re3data Analysis

“This article provides a comprehensive descriptive and statistical analysis of metadata information on 1,381 research data repositories worldwide and across all research disciplines. The analyzed metadata is derived from the re3data database, enabling search and browse functionalities for the global registry of research data repositories. The analysis focuses mainly on institutions that operate research data repositories, types and subjects of research data repositories (RDR), access conditions as well as services provided by the research data repositories. RDR differ in terms of the service levels they offer, languages they support or standards they comply with. These statements are commonly acknowledged by saying the RDR landscape is heterogeneous. As expected, we found a heterogeneous RDR landscape that is mostly influenced by the repositories’ disciplinary background for which they offer services.”

Religious studies scholars not readily adopting open access, according to new Ithaka S+R report | Omega Alpha | Open Access

“Although the report noted that scholars are keen to use online venues like for sharing and discovery of their research among colleagues, they are distrustful or uncertain about open access as a primary publishing model, either due to lack of appropriate open access venues in their (sub-)discipline, a perception of lower academic standards, or that it would not be recognized for tenure or promotion….”

Managing the Transitional Impact of Open Access Journals

Abstract:  The explosion of open access (OA) journals in recent years has not only impacted on how libraries manage contents and budgets, but also the choice of journals for academic researcher submission of their article for publication. A study conducted at the University of Hong Kong indicated that academic researchers have a gradual tendency in shifting some of their publications toward OA journals, and interestingly the shifts are discipline specific. While OA does offer an alternative to the unsustainable pricing of serials and supports a core value of ensuring openness to knowledge, the perceived value toward the impact of OA journals are still lacking consensus among stakeholders. 


 The aims of this study are to better understand from the perspective of academic researchers in 4 broad disciplines—Health Science, Life Science, Physical Science and Social Science, their preferences in paper submission. Data on actual article submission trends at HKU will be analyzed together with qualitative feedback from researchers to examine the trend and incentive in shifting toward OA publishing in different disciplines. Researcher’s attitude will be understood within the context of the university’s open policy and research assessment, as well as the current OA landscape to inform the scholarly communication trend going forward.

[1612.07863] Anatomy of Scholarly Information Behavior Patterns in the Wake of Social Media

Abstract:  As more scholarly content is being born digital or digitized, digital libraries are becoming increasingly vital to researchers leveraging scholarly big data for scientific discovery. Given the abundance of scholarly products-especially in environments created by the advent of social networking services-little is known about international scholarly information needs, information-seeking behavior, or information use. This paper aims to address these gaps by conducting an in-depth analysis of researchers in the United States and Qatar; learn about their research attitudes, practices, tactics, strategies, and expectations; and address the obstacles faced during research endeavors. Based on this analysis, the study identifies and describes new behavior patterns on the part of researchers as they engage in the information-seeking process. The analysis reveals that the use of academic social networks has remarkable effects on various scholarly activities. Further, this study identifies differences between students and faculty members in regard to their use of academic social networks, and it identifies differences between researchers according to discipline. The researchers who participated in the present study represent a range of disciplinary and cultural backgrounds. However, the study reports a number of similarities in terms of the researchers’ scholarly activities. Finally, the study illuminates some of the implications for the design of research platforms.

Should Indian researchers pay to get their work published?

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Abstract: “We raise the financial and ethical issue of paying for getting papers published in professional journals. Indian researchers have published more than 37,000 papers in over 880 open access journals from 61 countries in the five years 2010-14 as seen from Science Citation Index Expanded. This accounts for about 14.4% of India’s overall publication output, considerably higher than the 11.6% from the world. Indian authors have used 488 OA journals levying article processing charge (APC), ranging from INR 500 to US$5,000, in the five years to publish about 15,400 papers. More than half of these papers were published in just 13 journals. PLoS One and Current Science are the OA journals Indian researchers use most often. Most leading Indian journals are open access and they do not charge APC. Use of OA journals levying APC has increased over the four years from 242 journls and 2557 papers in 2010 to 328 journals and 3,634 papers in 2014. There has been an increase in the use of non-APC journals as well, but at a lower pace. About 27% of all Indian papers in OA journals are in ‘Clinical Medicine,’ and 11.7% in ‘Chemistry.’ Indian researchers have used nine mega journals to publish 3,100 papers. We estimate that India is potentially spending about US$2.4 million annually on APCs and suggest that it would be prudent for Indian authors to make their work freely available through interoperable repositories, a trend that is growing significantly in Latin America and China, especially when research is facing a funding crunch. We further suggest bringing all Indian OA journals on to a single platform similar to SciELO, and all repositories be harvested by CSIR-URDIP which is already managing the OA repositories of the laboratories of CSIR, DBT and DST. Such resource sharing will not only result in enhanced efficiency and reduced overall costs but also facilitate use of standard metadata among repositories.”

GitHub and more: sharing data & code | Innovations in Scholarly Communication

“Among those researchers that do archive and share data, GitHub is indeed the most often used, but just as many people indicate using ‘others’ (i.e. tools not mentioned as one of the preselected options). Figshare comes in third, followed by Bitbucket, Dryad, Dataverse, Zenodo and Pangaea (Figure 3)….Another surprising finding is the overall low use of Zenodo – a CERN-hosted repository that is the recommended archiving and sharing solution for data from EU-projects and -institutions. The fact that Zenodo is a data-sharing platform that is available to anyone (thus not just for EU project data) might not be widely known yet….”