Research data services for institutions | Open research | Springer Nature

“A small survey of global library staff reveals that respondents view open access as the future of academic and scientific publishing, and many are not satisfied with the current speed of the transition….

The majority of respondents thought that there would come a time when all future scholarly articles will be published open access, with two thirds believing this could happen over the next 10 years….”

Can the automatic posting of preprints increase the pace of medical research? – The Publication Plan for everyone interested in medical writing, the development of medical publications, and publication planning

“Preprints — versions of research papers made publicly available prior to formal publication in a peer reviewed journal — continue to be a topic of much discussion within the medical publications community. As the industry looks at ways to improve and advance the transparent and timely dissemination of research, preprints offer a potential route to achieving these aims. Already commonly used in fields such as physics, the launch of the medical publications preprint server medRxiv, expected later this year, is awaited with interest.

Meanwhile, Public Library of Science (PLOS) announced last month that all articles submitted to PLOS journals will now automatically be published on the biology preprint server bioRxiv as preprints, ahead of ‘traditional’ publication in a PLOS journal. Following initial top-line checks by PLOS, to ensure adherence to things like ethical standards and the journal’s scope, articles will be posted to bioRxiv while undergoing peer review at PLOS in parallel.

PLOS and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, which operates bioRxiv, hope this collaboration will help advance data dissemination and ultimately increase the speed of research. The potential of preprints has also been explored by other groups, including the possibility for preprints to improve online article engagement and for journals to use preprint servers to identify potential articles for publication.”

Europe set to miss flagship open access target | THE News

“The European Union is set to miss its target of having all scientific research freely available by 2020, as progress towards open access hits a “plateau” because of deeper problems in how research is assessed. Sixty to 70 per cent of universities reported that less than a fifth of their researchers’ peer-reviewed publications are freely available, depending on the type of open access, according to a survey of more than 300 members of the European University Association. 

Only one in 10 universities said that more than 40 per cent of their research was published as “gold” open access, where there is no delay making it public. In 2016, EU member states’ science and industry ministers, supported by the European Commission, backed a move to full open access in just four years. This latest survey asks members about papers published in 2013, 2014 and 2015, so may not capture all progress made to date. But it still concludes that to hit the 2020 target “will require greater engagement by all of the relevant stakeholders”.

This chimes with an EU progress report released at the end of February which concludes that “100 per cent full open access in 2020 is realistically not achievable in the majority of European countries participating in this exercise in the foreseeable future”. Lidia Borrell-Damian, the EUA’s director for research and innovation, said that “unfortunately [full open access] is very difficult to achieve” and that “we have reached a plateau in which it’s very difficult to move forward”.

Open access had taken off in some subjects – like physics, where the open access arXiv pre-print platform is widely used – in which “traditional indicators” of journal prestige such as impact factors and other measures of citations were “less relevant”, she explained. But in most disciplines, these measures were still crucial for burnishing researchers’ career prospects, she added, making it difficult for authors to switch to less prestigious, lower impact factor open access journals. “As long as it [research assessment] is based on these proxy indicators, it’s impossible to change the game,” Dr Borrell-Damian said. Search our database of more than 3,000 global university jobs

This is backed up by the survey findings. The biggest barrier to publishing in an open access repository was the “high priority given to publishing in conventional journals”, a hindrance cited by more than eight in 10 universities. “Concerns about the quality of open access publications” were also mentioned by nearly 70 per cent of respondents. In some disciplines, to publish open access, “you have to be a believer or activist” and it comes “at the risk of damaging your own career”, Dr Borrell-Damian said.

Echoing a long-standing concern in science, she argued that “we need a whole new system” of research assessment that does not rely so heavily on citations and impact factors. The EU’s flagship Horizon 2020 funding scheme requires grant recipients to publish their findings openly, but this was a far from universal policy for national funding bodies, she added. A spokesman for the EU Council acknowledged that “more efforts will be needed overall to accelerate progress towards full open access for all scientific publications”.”

Anatomy of green open access – Björk – 2013 – Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology

“Abstract: Open access (OA) is free, unrestricted access to electronic versions of scholarly publications. For peer-reviewed journal articles, there are two main routes to OA: publishing in OA journals (gold OA) or archiving of article copies or manuscripts at other web locations (green OA). This study focuses on summarizing and extending current knowledge about green OA. A synthesis of previous studies indicates that green OA coverage of all published journal articles is approximately 12%, with substantial disciplinary variation. Typically, green OA copies become available after considerable time delays, partly caused by publisher-imposed embargo periods, and partly by author tendencies to archive manuscripts only periodically. Although green OA copies should ideally be archived in proper repositories, a large share is stored on home pages and similar locations, with no assurance of long-term preservation. Often such locations contain exact copies of published articles, which may infringe on the publisher’s exclusive rights. The technical foundation for green OA uploading is becoming increasingly solid largely due to the rapid increase in the number of institutional repositories. The number of articles within the scope of OA mandates, which strongly influence the self-archival rate of articles, is nevertheless still low.”

Use of Free Textbooks Is Rising, but Barriers Remain – The Chronicle of Higher Education

“A growing number of professors are replacing the traditional textbook with an openly licensed one, according to a survey released on Tuesday. But their overall numbers remain small — and widespread adoption of the practice could remain out of reach unless key barriers are overcome.”

The Economic Logic of ‘Open Science’ and the Balance between Private Property Rights and the Public Domain in Scientific Data and Information: A Primer | SIEPR

“The progress of scientific and technological knowledge is a cumulative process, one that depends in the long?run on the rapid and widespread disclosure of new findings, so that they may be rapidly discarded if unreliable, or confirmed and brought into fruitful conjunction with other bodies of reliable knowledge. “Open science” institutions provide an alternative to the intellectual property approach to dealing with difficult problems in the allocation of resources for the production and distribution of information. As a mode of generating reliable knowledge, “open science” depends upon a specific non-market reward system to solve a number of resource allocation problems that have their origins in the particular characteristics of information as an economic good. There are features of the collegiate reputational reward system — conventionally associated with open science practice in the academy and public research institutes – that create conflicts been the ostensible norms of ‘cooperation’ and the incentives for non-cooperative, rivalrous behavior on the part of individuals and research units who race to establish “priority.” These sources of inefficiency notwithstanding, open science is properly regarded as uniquely well suited to the goal of maximising the rate of growth of the stock of reliable knowledge.

High access charges imposed by holders of monopoly rights in intellectual property have overall consequences for the conduct of science that are particularly damaging to programs of exploratory research which are recognized to be vital for the long-term progress of knowledge-driven economies….”

Lokaverkefni: “Opinn aðgangur að rannsóknum : tækifæri og áskoranir fyrir háskólasamfélagið á íslandi” | Skemman

A thesis by Sigurbjörg Jóhannesdóttir, submitted in October 2015. 

Abstract:  Open Access (OA) are introduced and discussed associated with open scholarship and the international scientific community. The status of Open Access in Iceland is explored through the laws and policies relating to OA, gratis and libre publications within scholarly journals, publication within open repositories, and the opportunities that scientists have to publish scholarly papers in OA.

Data was collected through interviews with experts in the Open Access field. Two questions were used from a study of OA that was conducted among scientists at Reykjavik University (RU) 2014, as well as an analysis of a list of their published articles in scholarly journals in 2013. 

The results show that OA is growing slowly in Iceland. Four institutions have OA policies. Icelandic scientists are not taking full advantage of the rules of journals about publishing articles within OA. Scientists’ beliefs concerning the barriers standing in their way for publishing sholarly papers in OA are based on a lack of knowledge and a lack of access to institutional repositories in which they might wish to publish their articles. 

The opportunities and challenges that Icelandic universities face regarding open sholarship are outlined and discussed. The universities need to have policies for OA and Open Educational Resources (OER) which are consistent with what is happening internationally. Academics need to receive helpful information on OA, they also need to receive encouragement, advice and support concerning publishing in OA. The universities and the scientific community in Iceland need to take a joint decision on what are the best ways for the continued preservation and publication of research and educational resources in OA.

John Dove, Overcoming Inertia in Green Open Access Adoption

“Here’s a little exercise which I’ve now done looking at research papers in a wide variety of disciplines. Look at the referenced sources in a recently published paper. Unless you are reading….this paper at one of the few fully-funded research libraries, you will find that a significant number of the referenced sources are unavailable to you. Open access is simply not there….Lots of the referenced sources will have to be obtained by inter-library loan or not at all. Your ability to participate in the scholarly inquiries of your field are highly constrained….I think there’s a case to be made that journal publishers may be missing a trick. There is a point in time when a publisher’s self-interest in the quality of their about-to-be-published work would be well-served by encouraging authors of referenced sources to share their past articles. This is also a moment in time at which the authors of referenced sources are also missing a trick but are unaware of it…..”

Open Science: The Next Frontier for Neurology

“What are One Mind’s open science principles?

To support Open Science for brain disease and injury, One Mind urges the international research community to adopt the following principles:

Provide informed consents for collection of medical data obtained from patients, which should permit use of their de-identified (anonymous) data for research related to a broad range of conditions — consistent with protecting patient privacy.

Use widely accepted common data elements and conform to the highest possible standards when clinical data is collected. This enables it to be used by the widest possible array of users, whether academic, medical, clinical or commercial.

Make data available to the research community as soon as possible after study completion, with the goal of opening data access within six months whenever possible.

Make data accessible to external researchers during the course of a study (subject to relevant data use agreements).

Give data generators proper attribution & credit from those who use their data.

Do not delay the publication of findings, as it may affect patient care.

Intellectual property should not stand in the way of research, but be used to incentivize material participation….”

Dr. Jessica Polka: Revolutionizing Biomedical Research Communication

“In the longer-term future, one could envision a system where researchers post their scientific contributions; a paper, a single figure, a method, a hypothesis; where we have the potential to make smaller contributions to the global knowledge base and get credit for those contributions in a manner that is more rapid and incremental. This would allow multiple scientists to collaborate and contribute to what we now know of as a single paper. Part of the challenge of the next 10 years is the problem of increasing information overload. Journals in the life sciences are aware that preprints have been around in physics for 25 years, and that the existence of preprints do not diminish the need for journals in that field. It is already impossible for a person to read all the relevant literature in their area, and this will only get harder. We need better tools to read and comprehend the literature, and a lot of these tools will be given by innovations in software and machine learning. My hope is that more of the literature is accessible to text and data mining, which will enhance our ability to understand the literature beyond that of a single human reader….”