Guest Post by Jean-Claude Guédon: Scholarly Communication and Scholarly Publishing – OASPA

“In December, I responded to an “Open Post” signed by a diverse group of scholarly publishers: commercial, learned societies, and university presses. Despite differing perspectives and objectives, all the signatories opposed “immediate green OA”. Their unanimity apparently rested on one concept: the “version of record”. 

Invited to contribute something further to this discussion (and I thank OASPA for this opportunity), I propose exploring how scholarly publishing should relate to scholarly communication. Ostensibly aligned, publishing and communication have diverged. Journals and the concept of “version of record” are not only a legacy from print, but their roles have shifted to the point where some processes involved in scholarly publishing are getting in the way of optimal scholarly communication, as the present pandemic amply reveals. Taking full advantage of digital affordances requires moving in different directions. This is an opportunity, not a challenge. Platforms and “record of versions” will eventually supersede journals and their articles, and now is the time to make some fundamental choices….”

Guest Post by Jean-Claude Guédon: Scholarly Communication and Scholarly Publishing – OASPA

“In December, I responded to an “Open Post” signed by a diverse group of scholarly publishers: commercial, learned societies, and university presses. Despite differing perspectives and objectives, all the signatories opposed “immediate green OA”. Their unanimity apparently rested on one concept: the “version of record”. 

Invited to contribute something further to this discussion (and I thank OASPA for this opportunity), I propose exploring how scholarly publishing should relate to scholarly communication. Ostensibly aligned, publishing and communication have diverged. Journals and the concept of “version of record” are not only a legacy from print, but their roles have shifted to the point where some processes involved in scholarly publishing are getting in the way of optimal scholarly communication, as the present pandemic amply reveals. Taking full advantage of digital affordances requires moving in different directions. This is an opportunity, not a challenge. Platforms and “record of versions” will eventually supersede journals and their articles, and now is the time to make some fundamental choices….”

ETDplus Toolkit [Tool Review]

Abstract:  Electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) have traditionally taken the form of PDFs and ETD programs and their submission and curation procedures have been built around this format. However, graduate students are increasingly creating non-PDF files during their research, and in some cases these files are just as or more important than the PDFs that must be submitted to satisfy degree requirements. As a result, both graduate students and ETD administrators need training and resources to support the handling of a wide variety of complex digital objects. The Educopia Institute’s ETDplus Toolkit provides a highly usable set of modules to address this need, openly licensed to allow for reuse and adaption to a variety of potential use cases.

 

Generalizing FAIR – Daniel S. Katz’s blog

“Most researchers and policymakers support the idea of making research, and specifically research outputs, findable, accessible, interoperably, and reusable (FAIR). The concept of FAIR has been well-developed for research data, but this is not the case for all research products. This blog post seeks to consider how the application of FAIR to a range of research products (beyond data) could result in the development of different sets of principles for applying FAIR to different research objects, and to ask about the implications of this….

Notebook articles: towards a transformative publishing experience in nonlinear science

Abstract:  Open Science, Reproducible Research, Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR) data principles are long term goals for scientific dissemination. However, the implementation of these principles calls for a reinspection of our means of dissemination. In our viewpoint, we discuss and advocate, in the context of nonlinear science, how a notebook article represents an essential step toward this objective by fully embracing cloud computing solutions. Notebook articles as scholar articles offer an alternative, efficient and more ethical way to disseminate research through their versatile environment. This format invites the readers to delve deeper into the reported research. Through the interactivity of the notebook articles, research results such as for instance equations and figures are reproducible even for non-expert readers. The codes and methods are available, in a transparent manner, to interested readers. The methods can be reused and adapted to answer additional questions in related topics. The codes run on cloud computing services, which provide easy access, even to low-income countries and research groups. The versatility of this environment provides the stakeholders – from the researchers to the publishers – with opportunities to disseminate the research results in innovative ways.

 

Iterative books: Posthumous publishing in eighteenth-century botany – Bettina Dietz, 2020

Abstract:  The growing number of known plants, and the need repeatedly to correct their names and their taxonomic attributions, demanded strategies for combining the static nature of a printed book with the fluctuating nature of the information it contained. From the second half of the seventeenth century botanists increasingly relied on publishing multiple updated editions of a book instead of attempting to correct, polish, and thus delay the appearance of a manuscript until, in the author’s opinion, it was finished. Provisional by nature, iterative books offered a solution. They were transient, open-ended and open to intervention, whether by one or multiple authors. Taking as an example the posthumous publication of orphaned material and manuscripts, a widespread phenomenon in eighteenth-century botany, this essay will focus on the sequence of iterative books that were published during the first half of the eighteenth century, based on the herbaria and papers left behind by the German botanist Paul Hermann (1646–95).

 

Instant access to code, for any arXiv paper | arXiv.org blog

“In October, arXiv released a new feature empowering arXiv authors to link their Machine Learning articles to associated code. Developed in an arXivLabs collaboration with Papers with Code, the tool was met with great enthusiasm from arXiv’s ML community.

Now, we’re expanding the capability beyond Machine Learning to arXiv papers in every category. And, to better align with our arXiv communities, PwC is launching new sites in computer science, physics, mathematics, astronomy and statistics to help researchers explore code in these fields….”

Papers with Code is Expanding to More Sciences! | by Ross Taylor | PapersWithCode | Dec, 2020 | Medium

“Today we are launching new sites for computer science, physics, mathematics, astronomy and statistics. Partnering with arXiv, you can use these sites to sync code to show on arXiv paper pages. These sites are live today, and the code tab is now enabled for arXiv papers from all fields! Explore (and add code to) our new portal here: https://portal.paperswithcode.com

As a result of this expansion, we are now tracking artifacts for over 600k research papers. This is just the beginning, and we are deepening our coverage in the weeks and months ahead. We hope our efforts increase code availability for all fields of science — making it a research norm — so the entire research community can progress more quickly together!…”

Gaming the Publishing Industry

“Despite the potential variances of method and mediation introduced to publishing via digital platforms, scholarly print publishing in established humanities disciplines continues to rely on a number of longstanding traditions and habits of practice. These habits still privilege academic journals and scholarly monographs or co-edited collections, many of which remain largely inaccessible for purchase to all but well-funded academic libraries. To encourage a broader distribution, exposure, and uptake of our work to expanded audiences, there is a pressing need to diversify publishing opportunities, to circumvent some of the less-accessible venues of scholarly communication, and to overcome restrictive barriers to augmenting and enriching textual content in scholarly work via the inclusion of visual and auditory material (especially when exploring multi-media and multi-modal forms of cultural expression). One potential alternative can be found in the emergent field of digital game scholarship and criticism, which has developed along unique communicative and community lines and which offers unconventional models and diversified potentials for scholarly communication….

Given the challenges that dominant forms of academic print-based scholarship introduce to open-access intentions, it is useful to look for other models of community-building, sharing, and knowledge-production which might be better suited to interdisciplinary, multi-media, multi-modal, open-access explorations of cultural expression, while still allowing for scholarly rigour, peer evaluation, and debate. I’m particularly interested in the way that scholarly critical work on digital games is not just limited to print-based output but has evolved along with the emergence of the internet and social media platforms. Exploring this evolution as well as some of the more successful experiments therein offers a unique perspective on the possibility of alternative, open scholarly communication strategies for scholars who are concerned with the restrictive aspects of traditional scholarly publishing models….”