Open Science in Kenya: Where Are We? | Research Metrics and Analytics

“According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Open Science is the movement to make scientific research and data accessible to all. It has great potential for advancing science. At its core, it includes (but is not limited to) open access, open data, and open research. Some of the associated advantages are promoting collaboration, sharing and reproducibility in research, and preventing the reinvention of the wheel, thus saving resources. As research becomes more globalized and its output grows exponentially, especially in data, the need for open scientific research practices is more evident — the future of modern science. This has resulted in a concerted global interest in open science uptake. Even so, barriers still exist. The formal training curriculum in most, if not all, universities in Kenya does not equip students with the knowledge and tools to subsequently practice open science in their research. Therefore, to work openly and collaboratively, there is a need for awareness and training in the use of open science tools. These have been neglected, especially in most developing countries, and remain barriers to the cause. Moreover, there is scanty research on the state of affairs regarding the practice and/or adoption of open science. Thus, we developed, through the OpenScienceKE framework, a model to narrow the gap. A sensitize-train-hack-collaborate model was applied in Nairobi, the economic and administrative capital of Kenya. Using the model, we sensitized through seminars, trained on the use of tools through workshops, applied the skills learned in training through hackathons to collaboratively answer the question on the state of open science in Kenya. While the former parts of the model had 20–50 participants, the latter part mainly involved participants with a bioinformatics background, leveraging their advanced computational skills. This model resulted in an open resource that researchers can use to publish as open access cost-effectively. Moreover, we observed a growing interest in open science practices in Kenya through literature search and data mining and that lack of awareness and skills may still hinder the adoption and practice of open science. Furthermore, at the time of the analyses, we surprisingly found that out of the 20,069 papers downloaded from BioRXiv, only 18 had Kenyan authors, a majority of which are international (16) collaborations. This may suggest poor uptake of the use of preprints among Kenyan researchers. The findings in this study highlight the state of open science in Kenya and challenges facing its adoption and practice while bringing forth possible areas for primary consideration in the campaign toward open science. It also proposes a model (sensitize-train-hack-collaborate model) that may be adopted by researchers, funders and other proponents of open science to address some of the challenges faced in promoting its adoption in Kenya….”

 

PROJECT KNOWLEDGE

“Like us, there are many who have been working with the vision of making education free and accessible for all. Such ventures work on different levels and platforms (not necessarily journals – podcasts, videos, lectures, catalogues, literature, events, etc.) and provide access to knowledge. Project Knowledge is an initiative to enlist all such endevours for dissemination to scholars. For regular updates on new and time-sensitive resources, please follow our facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/journal.llids.

We have chosen a simple searchable table format to catalogue Open Access research resources. Users are encouraged to explore the same through subject specific keywords as well as through the categories it has been organized in….”

Overton

“Overton is the world’s largest searchable index of policy documents, guidelines, think tank publications and working papers. 

It collects data from 182 countries and over a thousand sources worldwide with more being added all the time.

We parse each document, finding references, people and key concepts, and then link them to the relevant news stories, academic research, think tank output and other policy.

Our products allow you to search these documents and see where your ideas, papers, reports and staff are being cited or mentioned.

We can help you to discover where your work may be influencing or changing practice in the real world.”

ACRL 2021 Environmental Scan

“Every other year, the ACRL Research Planning and Review Committee provides a scan of higher education, detailing the current environment and its anticipated impact on libraries. While this year’s Environmental Scan is no different in terms of scope, we are now facing challenges to higher education on a scale not seen in decades. Across the globe, the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the lives and livelihoods of millions of people, and in the United States, this disruption has been compounded by the eruption of protests surrounding civil rights and other social justice issues. While the 2021 Environmental Scan covers developments over the last two years (2019 and 2020), the events of 2020 are anticipated to have lasting repercussions, and, while not the primary focus, are a common thread throughout the document….

After years of debate, more academic libraries have begun to rethink the big deal, often with support from their faculty. Florida State University, Iowa State University, the State University of New York (SUNY), the University of California, and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill have all cancelled big deal packages in recent years. These decisions have been driven by evolving licensing principles, increased open access content, cost considerations, and new tools to analyze the impact of more targeted subscriptions.91 With current and inevitable future budget cuts taking place across the country, one can expect this trend to continue. Colleges and universities are facing difficult times that will impact academic library budgets, prompting major transformations in collection management, including the consideration of how to manage big deal packages.

Automatic Textbook Billing Contract Library – SPARC

“SPARC created the Automatic Textbook Billing Contract Library as a resource for advocates and institutions to understand the legal agreements behind automatic textbook billing. Known by brand names like “Inclusive Access” and “First Day,” these programs charge the cost of digital course materials directly to each student’s tuition and fee bill, often without confirming their consent. While vendors say this model provides access, many students think it limits their options. Colleges and universities have a responsibility to prioritize the needs of students—not vendors—and that starts with reading the fine print….”

The New Abnormal: Periodicals Price Survey 2021 | Library Journal

“A large number of public and academic libraries are also looking at moderate to severe budget contractions due to unplanned COVID-related expenses, declines in tuition dollars, and/or local and state funding cuts. Many institutions are seeing or planning for permanent cuts between 9 and 13 percent to their base budget, a key difference from temporary cuts made after the Great Recession. Public libraries may fare better than academics: in an LJ survey of 223 public libraries across the United States, 84 percent reported an increase in FY21 total operating budgets for a rise of 2.9 percent. (See “The Price of a Pandemic.”) This was more modest than last year’s 3.5 percent increase, but represents continued, if uneven, gains….

Transformative agreements will make more content openly available, but they won’t pump any more money into library budgets or promise to make scholarly communications more sustainable. In the absence of national or statewide plans for funding OA (California being the notable exception), it’s difficult to see most “publish” universities in the United States agreeing to shoulder the costs of transformative agreements to make content open for all to read, particularly when faced with permanent budget cuts….

For the first time in a decade, libraries can anticipate subscription price increases of less than 6 percent: 3-4 percent is predicted for 2022. If a local serial portfolio skews toward large publishers, then the increase will be toward the 4 percent level. But with most institutions preparing for further collection cuts, even such a modest increase is not sustainable. Supported by faculty and emboldened by seeing the goals of Plan S and OA2020 start to come to fruition, libraries will be likely more prepared than ever to walk away from the table. Publishers will need to sharpen their pencils….

Although there were increases in the metrics for Impact Factor and Eigenfactor, the increases were not comparable to the increase in price. The average price ($6,637) for the most expensive journals was 18 times higher than the least expensive ($338), while the Impact Factor slightly more than doubled. The price increases for the more moderately priced titles were also lower than the more expensive titles, which showed close to a 4 percent increase. This analysis continues to show that higher priced titles do have higher Impact Factors and Eigenfactors, but the increase in the metrics is small when compared with the huge increase in costs….”

OA Switchboard Reporting Made Easy

“We took a step back to speak with some of our partners about the rationale behind the need for a standardised, structured and validated data format, delivering real-time, situational authoritative data from the source. We’re grateful they agreed to share their views and experiences. These partners are Stacey Burke (American Physiological Society), Colleen Campbell (Max Planck Digital Library, ESAC, OA2020), Todd Carpenter (NISO), Helen Dobson (Jisc), Matthew Goddard (Iowa State University), Marten Stavenga (John Benjamins Publishing Company) and Ivo Verbeek (Elitex).

 

We asked our interviewees to answer five questions:

What is the underlying need for ‘reporting’?

What is the minimum set of metadata required to achieve that goal?

What sources (systems) capture and manage these (meta)data? Is it possible to extract the data?

What makes a ‘standard’? What’s the benefit of a ‘standard’? How to get there?

How does the OA Switchboard make reporting ‘easy’? How does it work, end-to-end and real-time? …”

Forside – Dansk Open Access-Indikator

From Google’s English:  “The indicator is produced and launched annually by the Danish Agency for Education and Research, which is part of the Ministry of Education and Research. The indicator monitors the implementation of the Danish Open Access strategy 2018-2025 by collecting and analyzing publication data from the Danish universities.

Main menu:

OVERVIEW – National strategic goals and the realization of them at national and university level.
OA TYPES – Types of Open Access realization at national and local level.
DATA – Data for download as well as documentation at an overview and technical level.
GUIDANCE – Information to support the Danish universities’ implementation of Open Access, such as important dates and guidelines.
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions….”

Some journals say they are indexed in DOAJ but they are not – Google Sheets

“The following journals say, or have said in the past, that they are indexed in DOAJ. In many cases they carry our logo also, without our permission.

Always check at https://doaj.org/search/journals that a journal is indexed even if its website carries the DOAJ logo or says that it is indexed.

If youhave questions about this list, please email DOAJ: feedback@doaj.org…”