Building library-based support structures for Open Science (IATUL 2018)

Research institutions meet increasing demands for transparency, accountability, added value and reuse of all aspects of scientific production, from documenting the research process to sharing underlying data to open access to publications. Going beyond admirable slogans about openness there is a clear need for support infrastructures relating to the actual practice of Open Science describing metadata, archiving datasets and publications and disseminating increasingly interdisciplinary research results. Research libraries, having always been stewards of research institutions’ collective knowledge and offering a variety of research support services, are in a unique position to offer future support for Open Science based on the core competencies already existing at the library. This paper describes the process of building a comprehensive research support structure for Open Science at the university library of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. It shows how the library identified stated, but not necessarily operationalized, university strategies for Open Access and Open Data, and proceeded to strengthen its existing competencies in this area with human resources and a targeted approach to linking the library to the central research infrastructure of the university. This resulted in the library assuming responsibility for new research support services and plans of action for Open Access and Open Data for the whole of NTNU.

CORE becomes the world’s largest open access aggregator (or how about them stats 2018 edition) – CORE

“This was another productive year for the CORE team; our content providers have increased, along with our metadata and full text records. This makes CORE the world’s largest open access aggregator. More specifically, over the last 3 months CORE had more than 25 million users, tripling our usage compared to 2017. …

We also saw an increase in the number of users in our text analytics services, CORE API and CORE dataset, and the CORE Repository Dashboard and CORE Recommender….

For the past six months we invested a lot of effort in migrating to a new infrastructure that is needed to support our usage and content growth. This has been a tremendous task and we more than tripled the processing and storage capacity of CORE. We are now in the final stages of this migration, which will be completed early next year and will increase the potential and stability of our systems and service….”

Community Cultivation: A Field Guide

“Innovators abound in the fields of libraries, archives, museums, publishing, and higher education. Many of these idea generators find ample support for the creation of tools and technologies that enable new forms of knowledge production, dissemination, or preservation as those tools are first imagined and piloted.

However, when these innovators attempt to sustain their creations, external funding and attention often wane. A well-documented “Valley of Death” stretches between softfunded projects and sustainable programs. Without deep knowledge of how to build a support community, and how to manage such elements as resources, communications, engagement, and governance, innovators find the bridge between grant funding and ongoing operations very difficult to cross….

Many potential tools and services wither, not due to shortfalls in demand or shortcomings in those products, but rather to a lack of attention to organization and community building….

We [at Educopia] are now openly sharing the model that we have developed and refined over the last twelve years. Community Cultivation – A Field Guide provides a powerful lens that can provide both emerging and established communities with ways to understand, evaluate, and plan their own growth, change, and maturation. We are offering this Field Guide freely in the hope that it will empower more community facilitators and leaders to invest in the health and sustainability of their own collaborative networks….”

AUSTRIAN CONSORTIUM ANNOUNCES SUPPORT OF SCIPOST

As the first consortium worldwide, the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) and ten Austrian research institutes support SciPost, an Open Access publication platform in the field of physics. SciPost is free of charge for readers and authors and is based on an international cost-sharing model of leading institutions. The platform is supported by a large number of high-level researchers and has already published several first-class articles, including some from Austria….”

Intractable? – Adam Hyde

Scholarly publishing loves intractable problems. Building publishing platforms is often argued to be such a thing.

I think there’s a reasonable amount of skepticism here toward any claims to have solved what has been, for decades, an intractable set of problems. We’ve watched Wiley pour (estimated) tens of millions of dollars into building a platform, only to give up and purchase Atypon. We’ve watched Elsevier pour similar (estimated) amounts of money into building Evise, only to give up and purchase Aries. We’ve watched PLOS pour similar (estimated) amounts of money into building Aperta, only to give up and sign on with Aries.

David is talking to a belief in the scholarly publishing sector that publishing workflow platforms are an intractable problem. And yet, so the belief goes, Aries and others, have apparently ‘solved’ this problem.

Well, intractable problems aren’t ones that have been previously solved. So whats going on with this argument?….”

Notes From Our All Things Coko Meeting in London : Collaborative Knowledge Foundation

“From December 5 – 7, the Coko community and those curious to learn more about us convened in London for presentations, discussions, user centered design sessions, even an update Book Sprint for our PubSweet book. The best summary of the week is to say that All Things Coko truly were on display, and open for discussion!

On the 5th, around 50 attendees from funding organizations, publishers- both society and commercial, service providers, industry consultants and thought leaders came together to learn more about  Coko and be introduced to PubSweet and to view the platforms being constructed using this cutting edge open source infrastructure.

 

Attendees watched break out demonstrations of xPub-Hindawi, xPub-eLife, eLife’s Libero, xPub-Collabra, Editoria, Wormbase’s Micropubs platform, and xPub-Europe PMC in the high-energy ‘speed-geeking’ sessions….

Key highlights from the day include:

  • There are nine different platforms being built from the PubSweet platform tool-kit, representing four separate use cases: journals, books, aggregator, micropublications
  • There are service providers stepping up to offer Coko software as a hosted service
  • The change in culture in working on shared, open source solutions is a communication challenge, one we can work together to address….”

The African Open Science Platform: The Future of Science and Science for the Future

“The challenge for Africa. National science systems worldwide are struggling to adapt to this new paradigm. The alternatives are to do so or risk stagnating in a scientific backwater, isolated from creative streams of social, cultural and economic opportunity. Africa should adapt, but in its own way, and as a leader not a follower, with its own broader, more societally-engaged priorities. It should seize the challenge with boldness and resolution by creating an African Open Science Platform, with the potential to be a powerful lever of social, cultural and scientific vitality and of economic development.

The African Open Science Platform. The Platform’s mission is to put African scientists at the cutting edge of contemporary, data-intensive science as a fundamental resource for a modern society. Its building blocks are:

? a federated hardware, communications and software infrastructure, including policies and enabling practices to support open science in the digital era;

? a network of excellence in open science that supports scientists and other societal actors in accumulating and using modern data resources to maximise scientific, social and economic benefit.

These objectives will be realised through six related strands of activity:

Strand 1: A federated network of computational facilities and services.

Strand 2: Software tools and advice on policies and practices of research data management.

Strand 3: A Data Science and AI Institute at the cutting edge of data analytics.

Strand 4: Priority application programmes: e.g. cities, disease, biosphere, agriculture.

Strand 5: A Network for Education and Skills in data and information.

Strand 6: A Network for Open Science Access and Dialogue.

The document also outlines the proposed governance, membership and management structure of the Platform, the approach to initial funding, immediate priorities and targets for 3-5 year horizons.”