Astronomy & Astrophysics signs transformative Open Access agreement with Max Planck Society

“Paris, France 18 December 2018. Astronomy & Astrophysics (A&A) the international Journal that publishes papers on all aspects of astronomy and astrophysics and one of the leading journals in its field, has signed a two-year transformative Open Access agreement with the Max Planck Society in Germany. Under this agreement, funds previously paid by the Max Planck Digital Library for subscriptions will, instead, be converted into a publishing fund, enabling corresponding authors from the Max Planck Institutes to publish their articles open access in A&A, and at the same time, granting access to the journal’s content to all Max Planck researchers.”

Sluggish data sharing hampers reproducibility effort : Nature News & Comment

An initiative that aims to validate the findings of key cancer papers is being slowed by an unexpected hurdle — problems accessing data from the original studies.

The Reproducibility Initiative: Cancer Biology consortium aims to repeat experiments from 50 highly-cited studies published in 2010–12 in journals such as NatureCell and Science, to see how easy it is to reproduce their findings. Although these journals require authors to share their data on request, it has taken two months on average to get the data for each paper, said William Gunn, a co-leader of the project, at the 4th World Conference on Research Integrity in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on 3 June.

For one paper, securing the necessary data took a year. And the authors of four other papers have stopped communicating with the project altogether. In those instances, the journals that published the studies are stepping in to remind researchers of their responsibilities….”

Will open access increase journal CiteScores? An empirical investigation over multiple disciplines



This paper empirically studies the effect of Open Access on journal CiteScores. We have found that the general effect is positive but not uniform across different types of journals. In particular, we investigate two types of heterogeneous treatment effect: (1) the differential treatment effect among journals grouped by academic field, publisher, and tier; and (2) differential treatment effects of Open Access as a function of propensity to be treated. The results are robust to a number of sensitivity checks and falsification tests. Our findings shed new light on Open Access effect on journals and can help stakeholders of journals in the decision of adopting the Open Access policy.

The Landscape of Open Data Policies

Transparency is essential for scientific progress. Access to underlying data and materials allows us to make progress through new discoveries and to better evaluate reported findings, which increases trust in science. However, there are challenges to changing norms of scientific practice. Culture change is a slow process because of inertia and the fear of unintended consequences.

One barrier to change that we encounter as we advocate to journals for more data sharing is an editor’s uncertainty about how their publisher will react to such a change. Will they help implement that policy? Will they discourage it because of uncertainty about how it might affect submission numbers or citation rates? With uncertainty, inaction seems to be easier.

Promoting an open research culture: Author guidelines for journals could help to promote transparency, openness, and reproducibility

“There are eight standards in the TOP guidelines; each moves scientific communication toward greater openness. These standards are modular, facilitating adoption in whole or in part. However, they also complement each other, in that commitment to one standard may facilitate adoption of others. Moreover, the guidelines are sensitive to barriers to openness by articulating, for example, a process for exceptions to sharing because of ethical issues, intellectual property concerns, or availability of necessary resources. The complete guidelines are available in the TOP information commons at, along with a list of signatories that numbered 86 journals and 26 organizations as of 15 June 2015. …

The journal article is central to the research communication process. Guidelines for authors define what aspects of the research process should be made available to the community to evaluate, critique, reuse, and extend. Scientists recognize the value of transparency, openness, and reproducibility. Improvement of journal policies can help those values become more evident in daily practice and ultimately improve the public trust in science, and science itself.” 

Trends for open access to publications | European Commission

“On this page you will find indicators on how the policies of journals and funding agencies favour open access, and the percentage of publications (green and gold) actually available through open access.

The indicators cover bibliometric data on publications, as well as data on funders’ and journals’ policies. Indicators and case studies will be updated over time.”

ORCID Mandate Trial at Springer Nature | ORCID

“Springer Nature was one of the founding members of ORCID, and since 2012 we have encouraged our authors to submit verified ORCID identifiers and we display them on published papers. This ensures authors get credit for their publications, and contributes to improving the transparency of scholarly communication by disambiguating name homonyms. To further support the uptake of ORCID, in 2017 Springer Nature engaged in a trial mandating ORCID identifiers for corresponding authors of primary research manuscripts at 46 journals across our portfolios.

The trial ran from April 27 for 6 months and the mandate was applied at different stages of the manuscript processing: 14 Nature-branded research journals required iDs at acceptance, while 10 BioMed Central (BMC) and 22 Springer journals did so at initial submission. Corresponding authors were able to share their ORCID identifier in the manuscript tracking system (via the ORCID API); without this step the submission would not proceed to the next stage….”

Science Journals: editorial policies | Science | AAAS

“The Science Journals support the Transparency and Openness Promotion (TOP) guidelines to raise the quality of research published in Science and to increase transparency regarding the evidence on which conclusions are based….All data used in the analysis must be available to any researcher for purposes of reproducing or extending the analysis. Data must be available in the paper, deposited in a community special-purpose repository, accessible via a general-purpose repository such as Dryad, or otherwise openly available….”

PsyArXiv Preprints | Suggestions to Advance Your Mission: An Open Letter to Dr. Shinobu Kitayama, Editor of JPSP:ASC

An open letter to the new editor-in-chief of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology: Attitudes and Social Cognition, urging the adoption of best practices for data sharing, reproducibility, and open science.

Journals’ Retreat From Data-Sharing Mandate Puts Onus on Universities and Government – The Chronicle of Higher Education

“A year ago the world’s leading medical-journal editors announced plans to require their authors to share with other scientists the data associated with their published articles about clinical trials. “I realistically think this will take several years” for the right environment to be in place, said Darren B. Taichman, secretary of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, which proposed the now-abandoned data-sharing requirement. The benefits of an open-data system are widely accepted by scientists. Sharing the data that underlie a journal article helps colleagues confirm the accuracy of the published finding, speed and expand their own research, and credit the originators, advocates have said. But the coalition of journal editors, also known as the ICMJE, said last week that a rash of complaints from scientists about the proposed requirement had led it to conclude that the research community still was not ready for the mandate….”