Horizon Report 2021: Focus on Hybrid Learning, Microcredentialing and Quality Online Learning

by Claudia Sittner

The 2021 EDUCAUSE Horizon Report Teaching and Learning Edition was published at the end of April 2021 and looks at what trends, technologies and practices are currently driving teaching and learning and how they will significantly shape its future.

The report runs through four different scenarios of what the future of higher education might look like: growth, constraint, collapse or transformation. Only time will tell which scenario prevails. With this in mind, we looked at the Horizon Report 2021 to see what trends it suggests for academic libraries and information infrastructure institutions.

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) has progressed so rapidly since the last Horizon Report 2020 that people cannot catch up fast enough to test the technical advances of machines in natural language proceedings. Deep learning has evolved into self-supervised learning, where AI learns from raw or unlabelled data.

Artificial intelligence has a potential role to play in all areas of higher education where learning, teaching and success are concerned: support for accessible apps, student information and learning management systems, examination systems and library services, to name but a few. AI can also help analyse learning experiences and identify when students seem to be floundering academically. The much greater analytics opportunities that have emerged as the vast majority of learning events take place online, leaving a wide trail of analysable data, can help to better understand students and adapt learning experiences to their needs more quickly.

But AI also remains controversial: for all its benefits, questions about privacy, data protection and ethical aspects often remain unsatisfactorily answered. For example, there are AI-supported programmes that paraphrase texts so that other AI-supported programmes do not detect plagiarism.

Open Educational Resources

For Open Educational Resources (OER), the pandemic has not changed much, many of the OER offerings are “born digital” anyway. However, advantages of OER such as cost savings (students have to buy less literature), social equality (free and from everywhere) and the fact that materials are updated faster are gaining importance. Despite these obvious advantages and the constraints that corona brought with it, however, only a few teachers have switched to OER so far as the report „Digital Texts in Times of COVID” (PDF) shows. 87% of teachers still recommend the same paid textbooks.

OER continue to offer many possibilities, such as teachers embedding self-assessment questions directly into pages alongside text, audio and video content, and students receiving instant feedback. In some projects, libraries and students are also involved in the development of materials as OER specialists, alongside other groups from the academic ecosystem, helping to break down barriers within the discipline and redesign materials from their particular perspective.

In Europe, for example, the ENCORE+ – European Network for Catalyzing Open Resources in Education is working to build an extensive OER ecosystem. Also interesting: the „Code of Best Practices in Fair Use für Open Educational Resources”. It can be a tool for librarians when they want to create OER and use other data, including copyrighted data.

Learning Analytics

Online courses generate lots of data: How many learners have participated? When did they arrive? When did they leave? How did they interact? What works and what doesn’t? In higher education, learning data analysis should help make better, evidence-based decisions to best support the increasingly diverse group of learners. Academic libraries also often use such data to better understand and interpret learner needs, respond promptly and readjust.

The Syracuse University Libraries (USA), for example, have transmitted its user data via an interface to the university’s own learning analysis programme (CLLASS). A library profile was developed for this purpose, which was consistent with the library’s values, ethics, standards, policies and practices. This enabled responsible and controlled transmission of relevant data, and a learner profile could be created from different campus sources.

Just as with the use of artificial intelligence, there are many objections in this area regarding moral aspects and data protection. In any case, the handling of such learning data requires sensitisation and special training so that teachers, advisors and students can use data sensibly and draw the right conclusions. In the end, students could also receive tailored virtual support throughout the entire process from enrolment to graduation. Infrastructures for data collection, analysis and implementation are essential for this.

Microcredentials

Microcredentials are new forms of certification or proof of specific skills. They are also better suited to the increasingly diverse population of learners than traditional degrees and certificates. Unlike these, they are more flexible, designed for a shorter period of time and often more thematically focused. The spectrum of microcredentials spans six areas from short courses and badges, to bootcamps and the classic degree or accredited programmes.

Microcredentials are becoming increasingly popular and can also be combined with classic certifications. The Horizon Report 2021 sees particular potential for workers who can use them to retrain and further their education. It is therefore hardly surprising that companies like Google are also appearing on the scene with Google Career Certificates. For many scientific institutes, this means that they will have to further develop and rethink the architecture, infrastructure and work processes of their traditional certification systems.

Blended and Hybrid Course Models

Due to the corona pandemic, diverse blended and hybrid course models mushroomed, especially in the summer of 2020. “It is clear that higher education has diversified quickly and that these models are here to stay”, the report says. Hybrid courses allow more flexibility in course design; institutions can ramp up capacity as needed and cater even more to the diverse needs of students. However, most students still prefer face-to-face teaching.

Newly learned technical skills and technical support have played a predominant role. In some places, new course models have been developed together with the learners. On the other hand, classic practices (such as frequent assessments, breakout groups during live course meetings, and check-in messages to individual students) remain high on the agenda. However, corona has brought mental and social health of all participants into sharper focus; it should also receive even more attention according to the Horizon Report.

Quality Online Learning

The coronavirus came along and everything suddenly had to take place online. So it is little wonder that the need to design, meaningfully evaluate and adapt high-quality online learning opportunities has increased enormously. Some were surprised to find that teaching online involved more effort than simply offering the on-site event via Zoom. In order to achieve learning success, online quality assurance became an issue of utmost relevance.

Early in the pandemic, therefore, institutes began to develop online portals or hubs that included materials and teaching strategies adapted to the situation: for content delivery, to encourage student participation and to rethink assessment mechanisms.

A positive example is the twelve-module course “Quickstarter Online-Lehre” (Quickstarter Online Teaching, German) by the Hochschulforum Digitalisierung – German Forum for Higher Education in a digital age and the Gesellschaft für Medien in der Wissenschaft (Society for media in science) from Germany. This course aims to support teachers with no or little online experience.

This text has been translated from German.

This might also interest you:

The post Horizon Report 2021: Focus on Hybrid Learning, Microcredentialing and Quality Online Learning first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.

Nudging Open Science: Useful Tips for Academic Libraries?

by Claudia Sittner

An international group of eleven behavioural scientists from eight countries (Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Austria, Poland, USA, Netherlands) recently addressed this question in the report „Nudging Open Science“ and developed recommendations for action for seven groups in the scientific system. Academic libraries are one of these groups. The other groups (they are called “nodes” in the report) are researchers, students, departments and faculties, universities, journals and funding organisations. The team of behavioural scientists classifies each of these groups and gives practical tips on who can nudge each group, and how, to practice more Open Science. However, the report does not contain any approaches on how libraries themselves can actively nudge other stakeholders. We present approaches and results of the report with a special focus on academic libraries.

What is nudging?

The approach of nudging comes from behavioural research. It maintains that behavioural change can be brought about through gentle nudging, without strict coercion or regulation. Nudging is defined in the report as making “small, easily-to-avoidchanges to a person’s decision-making environment that alter behaviour in predictable ways without forbidding any options or using economic incentives”.

A classic example is the topic of organ donation. In Sweden, for example, everyone is an organ donor by definition. If a person does not want this, he:she must actively object. As a result, the percentage of organ donors in Sweden is much higher than in Germany, where not everyone is an organ donor by law.

Nudging Open Science

Now the group of behavioural scientists has started thinking about how the potential of nudging could be used to further advance Open Science in the scientific ecosystem. Their thesis: Whether researchers and institutions choose to engage in Open Science practices is not necessarily a matter of rational choice. On the contrary: Most decisions are routinely made in the course of emotional, automatic or impulsive processes that are often influenced by psychosocial factors (example: peer pressure). When faced with a decision, a person usually chooses the path of least resistance or least effort. The status quo is maintained.

This also applies to decisions that researchers and institutions make when defining how they conduct, report on, evaluate, publish or fund research (for example, in relation to preregistrations, publishing preprints or Open Data). “Human psychology is at the centre of every decision, whether it be buying toothpaste, running a scientific study, or evaluating a research project”, say the authors. They therefore see great potential in using nudging to improve the use and continuation of Open Science practices. Measures at each of the nodes are essential, to ensure that the changes can really take hold.

The report creates a profile for each of the nodes with its psychology and describes its role in the scientific community. Finally, measures are proposed on how and from whom these seven groups can be nudged towards more Open Science.

Academic libraries node

From the authors´ point of view, two main things prevent comprehensive changes towards more Open Science in libraries: “administrative and financial status quos, and a drive to satisfy customers (students and staff)”. Here, however, one notices that the report is perhaps based on a somewhat outdated image of libraries, as there are many Open Science enthusiasts in modern academic libraries who are driving forward change.

The report further identifies fields in which academic libraries can promote Open Science:

  • Create guidelines, training and roadmaps for researchers so they can their research more transparent.
  • Subsidise article publication charges for Open Access publications or finance Open Access publications.
  • Promote free access to the research generated by the respective institution.
  • Advocate FAIR datasets in their own repositories.
  • Develop strategies for research data management to ensure that data is recorded, preserved and accessible.
  • Establish an online infrastructure that makes it easy for publications to be stored with data and code.
  • Open Educational Resources: Libraries can create and make available textbooks, lecture notes, exam papers, videos or other media.

This list is probably not new to staff in academic libraries that are modern and savvy about Open Science, but may encourage them in what they are already doing.

How can academic libraries be nudged?

Broadly speaking, the report highlights two groups of people that can nudge libraries in relation to Open Science practices:

  1. Students (or other individuals): could contact library staff directly or by email with suggestions on how to implement open practices, according to the report.
  2. Researchers: when researchers store contributions in library repositories, they can ask how other data, such as preregistrations, preprints or datasets, can be published with their contributions. To highlight the relevance of the associated data, researchers could also offer to coordinate data management workshops. Suggesting Open Access funding initiatives is another area where researchers could become active.

Whether it makes sense and is realistic to expect groups with a very limited time budget (students, researchers) and hardly any incentive, apart from personal commitment, to nudge libraries is open to question. On the other hand, libraries themselves are in many cases committed to actively promoting the cultural change towards Open Access, Open Educational Resources & Co. Perhaps the yawning gap here also stems from the fact that behavioural researchers´ ideas about how modern academic libraries operate are very different from the practice there today?

Conclusion: more Open Science through nudging?

Reflections on how people make decisions and the application of nudging from behavioural science to Open Science is an interesting approach. It causes a change of perspective in observers and causes them to realise their own scope for action and their own “power” to initiate change through behaviour. Basically, the idea is to change the mindset of libraries and other nodes in the academic ecosystem by creating a demand for open practices. The measures and approaches mentioned are neither new nor surprising, but they open up fields of action for particularly committed individuals and individual groups of people.

For readers, or from the perspective of libraries interested in Open Science, a breakdown according to the different groups would have been more helpful, as individuals tend to wonder: What can I do? Nevertheless, nudging in the field of Open Science opens up other options, provided enough users can get excited about nudging the academic node of their choice. Libraries could therefore use the report as an opportunity to systematically apply nudging to promote Open Science.

This might also interest you:

This text has been translated from German.

The post Nudging Open Science: Useful Tips for Academic Libraries? first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.

The Openness Profile of Knowledge Exchange: What can infrastructure providers do?

by Claudia Sittner

Knowledge Exchange (KE), a cooperative partnership of six national research-supporting organisations in Europe, has explored the development of an Openness Profile during an 18-month research evaluation of Open Science. In the report, instead of Open Science, the term “open scholarship” is used with a broader understanding. The final project report “Openness Profile: Modelling research evaluation for open scholarship” has recently been published. During the process, 80 people from 48 organisations at all levels of the “open scholarship ecosystem” were involved and surveyed.

In January 2020, the group already published preliminary results on the concept of the Openness Profile. In the blogpost Openness Profile Interim Report: What Libraries Could Take Away” we explored what libraries and infrastructure providers could learn from it.

We will briefly introduce the concept of the Openness Profile and take a look at which recommendations could be interesting for libraries and information infrastructures to promote open research practices and their acknowledgement, thereby supporting the Open Science community.

Why a global Openness Profile is a good idea

The concluding report ultimately concerns a well-known problem of Open Science: open activities are often invisible and unacknowledged. For researchers, therefore, they basically play hardly any role in career planning. This also applies to activities of partly non-scientific staff that are important for Open Science but are not even considered in the scientific evaluation system. Those activities include, for example, curating research data, developing infrastructures or conducting training for open practices. It also means that these kinds of qualified specialists tend to migrate from science to industry or commercial sectors, owing to lack of recognition and incentives.

Science is increasingly taking place at a global and interconnected level. A comprehensive global reform of the scientific incentive system, in which more stakeholders and open activities play a (larger) role, is required so that Open Science can ultimately gain acceptance.

Making open activities and stakeholders visible: the Openness Profile

This is where the Openness Profile comes into play. The Openness Profile is a kind of portfolio that makes activities in the field of Open Science visible, thereby increasing the awareness of the scientific community and all participants about the current lack of recognition for Open Science activities and stakeholders in the scientific evaluation system. In a first step, the Openness Profile should build upon existing persistent identifiers (PIDs), initially ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID). The advantage is that many scientists already have an ORCID ID anyway.

An ORCID record would then also be supplemented by the Openness Profile; and open activities and further stakeholders such as data stewards or project managers, who remain unacknowledged and therefore not remunerated for open activities in the current scientific system, can be made visible. This thereby simultaneously creates an incentive for open activities. The Openness Profile is therefore not only useful for individuals, who would need to maintain it themselves – but can also be taken up by funders who have grants to award or institutes who have vacancies to fill.

Open activities can be recorded and linked in a structured way in the Openness Profile by existing identifiers such as DOI, ORG ID or Grant ID, but manual entries with URLs and descriptive text are also possible. The Openness Profile is thus intended to become the central hub for collecting and linking of Open Science activities and results.

General recommendations on realising the Openness Profile

At the end of the report, KE provides recommendations for joint activities that are required to actually implement the Openness Profile, for four different groups of stakeholders:

  1. Research funders,
  2. national research organisations,
  3. institutes and
  4. infrastructure providers.

Below we take a closer look at the general recommendations as well as those for the infrastructure providers.

The general recommendations are:

  1. All pull in the same direction: Diverse stakeholders are involved at all levels of the scientific system. They often pursue their own goals and interests. In order to implement the Openness Profile, it is often necessary to subordinate individual interests to the common goal. All those involved have to declare their willingness to do this. The aim is to make open projects interoperable and sustainable, leading to increased transparency, reproducibility and ultimately, a higher research quality.
  2. Bring all participants together (stakeholder summit): to keep an eye on the interest and experience of all involved, KE suggests a summit of all stakeholders for the purpose of productive exchange and collaboration. The term ‘all participants’ refers to, for example: science policy-makers, institute managements, technologists, providers of research information systems, researchers at all career levels and infrastructure experts.
  3. Establish a permanent working group: This working group (WG) should be made up of all stakeholders and deal with five topic areas:
    1. community governance model,
    2. validation of the OP reference model,
    3. taxonomy for contributors and contributions,
    4. technical facilitation of research management workflows,
    5. infrastructures survey and gap analysis.

    The integration of persistent identifiers and the interoperability of the systems through the use of APIs is emphasised in the technical implementation. In terms of the analysis of the infrastructure landscape, KE finds that much is already in place that could support the Openness Profile. It would be a good idea if employees from libraries or other infrastructure providers became part of this permanent working group.

  4. Finding sponsors: To implement the Openness Profile, it is necessary to find one or more sponsors who can guarantee long-term financing and thereby the sustainability of the project. In addition to the financial support, these would have a variety of tasks such as the development of software to connect information systems using PID metadata or the coordination of training programmes for Open Science communities. This role would certainly be well suited to infrastructure providers, who could integrate persistent identifiers into their systems themselves (in-house Open Access repositories, for example) or expand and share their often already existing training programmes.

Recommendations for infrastructure providers

KE sees the role of infrastructure providers in relation to the Openness Profile primarily in increasing and ensuring interoperability between research systems, which can be achieved through persistent identifiers. This would be more sustainable anyway and would lead to a further development of the Openness Profile. In the most recent JISC report on persistent identifiers (PIDs), five major players were identified: ORCID, Crossref, Datacite, ARDC (RAiD) and RoR. Libraries and infrastructure providers could therefore focus on taking care of the interoperability of their existing systems through PIDs.

Furthermore, the following recommendations are made expressly for infrastructure providers in the concluding report:

  • They should assume an active role in the development of research infrastructure and corresponding workflows, while closely collaborating with other stakeholders on a national level – such as research organisations, publishers or funders.
  • As the Openness Profile is integrated via ORCID, its use must be focussed more sharply. To encourage the use of ORCID records and application programming interfaces (APIs), it is recommended that they be more closely integrated into institutional research information and funding systems, and that capacities be increased where necessary
  • Another recommendation is to review governance structures to ensure that they are genuinely primarily responsive to community needs and not to individual interests

The report also proposes expanding and intensifying collaborations between national research organisations and infrastructure providers, thereby driving Open Science forward.

Conclusion: Openness Profile and libraries – will it be a match?

The Openness Profile is an ambitious project to make Open Science and all its participating stakeholders visible. A far-reaching reform of the monoculturally oriented scientific incentive system is long overdue. Whether the Openness Profile will actually be realised depends heavily on whether there are enough sponsors among the stakeholders who are willing to invest in the project – both financially and in terms of personnel.

Libraries and infrastructure providers would be important stakeholders here owing to their expertise; and their own (open) activities and contributions could also be better captured and recognised by inclusion in an Openness Profile. They should also ensure that they are represented when the stakeholders summit and send committed Open Science enthusiasts to the working group to be established in the long-term – so that their interests are represented and their comprehensive know-how can be used. On a practical level, they can already ensure the integration of persistent identifiers in their systems, thereby making them interoperable and sustainable.

You may also be interested in:

This text has been translated from German.

The post The Openness Profile of Knowledge Exchange: What can infrastructure providers do? first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.

Open Science Podcasts: 7 + 3 Tips for Your Ears

by Claudia Sittner

Podcasts are booming – not just these days, but in the time of the pandemic the format has gained a new appeal for many. And since this blog is all about Open Science and infrastructure service providers, we set out to explore the best podcasts on the topic.

So here are our podcast tips for anyone who is interested in Open Science or would like to take a closer look at the topic. At this point, a big thank you to our followers on Twitter, whose tips we have included in the following collection.

In it, we present 7 open science podcasts that are still being produced and 3 that have unfortunately already been discontinued, but are still interesting for open science beginners. Have fun listening!

  1. Open Science Radio
    This podcast deals with the topic of Open Science in its many-sided and -layered aspects – from Open Access to Citizen Science and Open Data to public science and Open Education. The podcast aims to create a basic understanding, but above all to inform about current developments.

    Hosts: Matthias Fromm, Konrad Förstner
    Since: 2013
    Language: German, some in English

  2. ORION Open Science Podcast
    From Data Sharing to Citizen Science and from Peer Review to professional development the episodes of ORION Open Science Podcast will explore the good, the bad, and the ugly of the current scientific system, and what Open Science practices can do to improve the way we do science.

    Given the momentum of the Open Science movement it makes sense that researchers of all levels want to understand the issues and the opportunities behind it. The principles of Open Science are about accessibility and collaboration in research, but this still leaves questions to be answered. Why has Open Science become part of the research landscape? How will it impact day-to-day scientific work? What new developments are available and how can they be used effectively?

    The podcasts’s motto: The best way to learn about something new is to simply talk to people who have knowledge and informed opinions on the topic.

    Hosts: Luiza Bengtsson, Emma Harris, Zoe Ingram
    Organisation: Max-Delbrück-Center for Molecular Medicine, Helmholtz Association (MDC)
    Since: 2019
    Language: English

  3. The Future is Open Science
    In this podcast people from the scientific community talk about how they promote Open Science in their daily work. The topic is examined from very different perspectives: Whether it’s with the big science policy glasses, when it comes to classifying different initiatives and developments, or with the subject-specific glasses, when the economic cultural change towards more research transparency is illuminated, or with the operational view of practitioners, how Open Science can be implemented concretely. The podcast delves into the depths of science communication in the digital age and gives tips and tricks on Open Science in practice.

    Host: Doreen Siegfried
    Organisation: ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics
    Language: German
    Since: 2020

  4. The Road to Open Science
    The Road to Open Science Podcast functions as a guide on everything Open at Utrecht University and beyond. In the monthly podcast the hosts discuss the latest developments in the fields of Open Acces, Open Data/Software, public engagement and recognition and rewards. The hosts follow the path to adapting Open Science practices through the perspective of researchers from different disciplines. In each episode they talk to people within the academic community about their research, initiatives, or experiences in relation to open science.

    Hosts: Sanli Faez, Lieven Heeremans
    Organisation: Utrecht University, The Netherlands
    Language: English
    Since: 2017

  5. Open Science Talk
    This podcast is pretty much «open anything» from Open Science, Open Access, Open Education, Open Data, Open Software …. The hosts invite guests to explain different topics or share with them some of their research practices and reflections related to Open Science.

    They try to cover a wide range of different topics within the Open Science spectrum, such as Open Access, Open Data, Open Research, Open Education, Citizen Science, Open Health… the list is long. They seek to cover the various branches of Open Science from different angles, and they also try to talk about recent events in the Open Science world.

    Their guests: librarians, professors, students, and PhD-candidates from all kinds of different fields, also publishers and administrative employees that work within science.

    Hosts: Per Pippin Aspaas, before: Erik Lieungh
    Organisation: University Library at UiT The Arctic University of Norway
    Language: English
    Since: 2018

  6. ReproducibiliTea
    Serving mugs of ReproducibiliTea: The blends of this podcast include transparency, openness and robustness with a spoonful of science. The hosts reflect on their experiences trying to push for open and reproducible research. Their conversations with other early career researchers highlight challenges and opportunities to achieve changes in the scientific system.

    Hosts: Sophia Crüwell, Amy Orben, Sam Parsons
    Organisation: ReproducibiliTea Journal Club, 121 Clubs worldwide
    Language: English
    Since: 2019

  7. Open Science Stories
    This podcast is the newcomer among our collection. Open Science concepts are compactly packaged as stories and explained in 10 minutes or less.

    Host: Heidi Seibold
    Language: English
    Since: 2021

Open-Science-Podcasts: production discontinued

In addition to the podcasts that are currently in production, we would also like to recommend some whose production has unfortunately already been discontinued. Nevertheless, the existing episodes are still available and worth listening to, especially for Open Science beginners:

  1. Open Science in Action
    This interview podcast is about Open Science activities – mostly from Austria. People and institutions are visited who are involved in Open Science and/or who are doing it themselves. In 30-60 minutes, innovative and exciting activities around the opening of science are shown and the listeners are introduced to the different aspects of it. From Open Access in university libraries to Open Source at research institutes to open hackspaces and Citizen Science.

    Hosts: Stefan Kasberger, Marc Pietkiewicz
    Organisation: ÖH Universität Graz, Austria (Students´ Union of the University of Graz, Austria)
    Language: German
    Since: 2014, 10 episodes

  2. Open Science
    In this series of podcasts the impact of opening up science is considered: allowing both the research community and the public a freely access to the results of scientific work. Individuals can be fully informed about medical or environmental research, students worldwide can get access to the latest work, and software agents can roam the vast scientific knowledge base seeking patterns and correlations that no human has observed. Ultimately, it may profoundly change the way science is done.

    Organisation: University of Oxford
    Language: English
    Since: 2012-2013, 23 episodes

  3. Colper Science
    This interview podcast is also about Open Science and its methods. The podcast makers believe that it is possible for researchers to fully migrate into the universe of Open Science by using tools and methods that are already available. Unfortunately, however, most of these tools, methods and opportunities remain unknown to most of the research community. The aim of Colper Science is to make these tools known by sharing success stories around Open Science.

    Hosts: Kambiz Chizari, Ilyass Tabiai
    Language: English
    Since: 2017-2018, 26 episodes

Your Open Science podcast is not included?

These were our discoveries of Open Science podcasts. I’m sure there are more podcasts worth listening to in this field, especially internationally.

If you can think of any, we would be happy to receive link tips on Twitter and Facebook or by email to team (at) zbw-mediatalk.eu! We will be glad to add your podcast to our collection!

Read more

References Portrait: Photo Claudia Sittner©

This text has been translated from German.

The post Open Science Podcasts: 7 + 3 Tips for Your Ears first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.The post Open Science Podcasts: 7 + 3 Tips for Your Ears first appeared on Leibniz Research Alliance Open Science.

Science Barometer 2020: Starting Points for Open Science?

by Claudia Sittner

The Science Barometer – not to be confused with the Barometer for the Academic World – is a representative opinion poll that has been examining the attitude of German citizens to science and research annually since 2014. There were additional surveys in April and May 2020 owing to the corona crisis (“Corona Special”). Last month, the results of the most recent survey from November 2020 were presented.

Brochure Science Barometer 2020 (PDF). The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.

The Science Barometer was commissioned by the organisation Wissenschaft im Dialog – An initiative of Germany´s scientific community (Science in Dialog, WiD). This non-profit organisation is aimed at promoting dialogue about science and research in Germany and encouraging as many people as possible to take part. WiD also drives forward the further development of science communication and thereby also of Open Science. The survey is sponsored by the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.

Around 1,000 citizens from the age of 14 upwards in private households were surveyed during telephone interviews. German-speaking residents formed the parent population. We have taken a look at the results of the Science Barometer 2020 from the perspective of its importance for Open Science in science and research, and present its interesting findings.

Interest stable; traditional media most important source of information

Interest in science and research is stable at 60% of the population and is only exceeded by a 68% interest in local news. That corresponds with the opinion of 59% of those surveyed, who agree with the statement either partly or completely that they personally profit from science and research.

Science Barometer 2020. The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.

They get their information primarily (80% – occasionally to very frequently) via the traditional media. Less frequently via internet sites of scientific institutions (43%), and in only 29% of cases, those surveyed got their information via research topics on social media. In the light of the corona pandemic, online services of traditional news media became more relevant.

For science and research, this means that it is worth investing more in press and PR work so that relevant scientific findings are taken up by traditional media and can reach the population. Particularly for institutions that are committed to Open Science, this seems to be a good place to start, to ensure that their content and dedication are perceived more strongly. Fittingly, a third of those surveyed are of the opinion that scientists should inform people more strongly about their work.

Trust higher than in previous years; tendency sinking in the COVID-19 year 2020

Trust in science and research is also very high in November 2020 at almost two thirds (60% either tend to trust, or trust completely). In previous years, this value was around 50%. It is interesting here that trust in science and research initially rose sharply – to 77% – at the beginning of the corona pandemic (survey April 2020): in comparison to 2019, four times as many people surveyed trusted it “fully and completely”. However, this value had almost halved again by the time of the November 2020 survey.

Science Barometer 2020. The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.




This shows a high degree of confidence in science and research at the beginning of the pandemic and could point to a disappointment experienced by many people during the second corona lockdown.

Science Barometer 2020. The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.

Reasons for the credibility were quoted as expertise, integrity as well as acting in the interests of the general public. Compared to the previous year, the tendency is increasing for all reasons. By contrast, the reasons for mistrust are:

  • Dependency on funders (49% tend to agree, or agree fully and completely),
  • Scientists adjust the findings to their expectations (25% – see above),
  • Often make mistakes (16% – see above).

In comparison to the previous year, however, the agreement with these reasons is to some extent severely reduced. The lowest value since the beginning of the survey series regarding the question of whether people should trust their feelings and their faith instead of science, corresponds to this (23% – tend to agree and agree fully and completely).

For supporters of Open Science, the fact that trust and educational level correlate can play an additional role here: The higher the formal educational level, the greater the trust. If one assumes that in most cases science communication reaches people with a higher level of education in particular, this could be evaluated as a positive sign. For among these people, trust in science and research is high. On the other hand, it also means that science communication needs to make more of an effort to reach people without a higher formal education in order to gain the trust of this group as well.

Corona Special: Science fundamentally important; controversy welcome

When it comes to the coronavirus, the public trust the statements of doctors and medical personnel the most (80% – tend to trust and fully and completely trust), closely followed by trust in the statements of scientists (73% – tend to trust or fully and completely trust). However, some also suspect (39% – tend to agree and fully and completely agree), that scientists are not telling us everything they know about the coronavirus. The same number of respondents also believes that it is important to get information about the virus from outside science.

“The fact that so many people trust in science shows how good the dialogue between science and society is functioning during the pandemic. However, the relatively high number of people who are undecided or sceptical is cause for concern: Science needs to open up even more and also seek to start a dialogue with those who are sceptical. To ensure that this occurs, we need to support all researchers in communicating their knowledge, their results and their working methods”.

— WiD CEO Markus Weißkopf.

Overall, the public wants political decisions in the context of the corona pandemic to be based on scientific findings. Direct interference by scientists in politics, on the other hand, is not desired. On the whole, this is good news for Open Science enthusiasts, as it means that they are awarded credibility in issues regarding corona, and it is therefore worth conducting one’s research as openly as possible and communicating one’s own work. It also shows that Open Science can score points with the public, precisely because of its transparency: Results can be openly understood, and there are no obligatory intermediaries such as journalists, who filter and evaluate the information.

Science Barometer 2020. The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.

By contrast, increasingly less credibility is ascribed to the statements of politicians and journalists. One can conclude that researchers would be well advised to communicate coronavirus´ issues to the public themselves or to aim for a very close collaboration with the traditional media. The format of (scientific) podcasts (German) has proven to be a good option for this during the corona crisis – the number of listeners and their popularity have strongly increased over the previous year.

There is a very high level of trust that researchers are clearly communicating whether their statements are verified findings or open issues on the topic of the COVID-19 pandemic (46% – tend to agree and fully and completely agree; 40% undecided). Controversies among scientists are evaluated as being positive and informative by more than two thirds of those asked. For the Open Science community, this is a confirmation that it should campaign for discourse to be opened up and create spaces, so that this can take place transparently, publicly and comprehensibly.

This is even more important, because there are also people who “in the corona pandemic prefer to rely on ‘common sense’ than on scientific studies. It is even more important to communicate facts and recommendations for action via diverse formats, in order to reach those who are uncertain and have doubts”, confirms Tina Stengele, provisional head of the science division at the Robert Bosch Stiftung, which is supporting the Science Barometer.

Science Barometer and Open Science: Strengthen science communication

Applying and verifying scientific findings quickly has become more important than ever, owing to the corona crisis. This has led to science taking on a more prominent role amongst the public, whose trust in researchers and their integrity was also strong according to the last survey of the Science Barometer.“

“A decisive pillar in strengthening and extending trust is the accessibility and comprehensibility of research results.. (…) This strengthens us in our conviction that it is a successful model to explain findings and developments straightforwardly, to classify them and to present their benefits – for experts and laypersons alike”.

— Janis Eitner, director of communication at the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

From an Open Science perspective, now is certainly still a good time for urging the scientific system to become even more open in all its subprocesses, and for using professional science communication more widely, on own channels such as podcasts or on a stable cooperation with the traditional media. The negotiating position for more Open Science is favourable right now, and the experiences from the pandemic have made it unmistakably clear to everyone how important having a more open ecosystem of free knowledge is and will be in times of global crises.

This might also interest you:

References
Portrait: Photo Claudia Sittner©
The use of the graphics of the results is possible if the source “Wissenschaft im Dialog/Kantar Emnid” is mentioned. The graphics run under the licence [CC BY-ND 4.0], adaptations of the format for editorial publications are permitted.

This text has been translated from German.

The post Science Barometer 2020: Starting Points for Open Science? first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.The post Science Barometer 2020: Starting Points for Open Science? first appeared on Leibniz Research Alliance Open Science.

Open Science & Libraries 2021: 20 Tips for Conferences, Barcamps & Co.

by Claudia Sittner

After the Corona Year 2020 threw the event industry off track worldwide, event organisers have adapted to the “new normal” in 2021 and developed new digital formats. The advantage: the event world has become smaller. Events that used to take place out of reach in Sydney or Bangkok can now often be attended conveniently from the home office.

Many organisers have also used the year to rethink their event prices, reduce fees or eliminate them altogether – which is entirely in the spirit of the Open Science idea. That is why it was not difficult for us to put together a list of conferences, workshops, barcamps and other events that you should not miss in 2021.

JANUARY 2021

Open Science Barcamp
14.01.21, Online-Event
“A session in the series leading up to the Netherlands National Open Science Festival on February 11th 2021.”
Organised by: National Platform Open Science Netherlands


Webinar Serie: German-Dutch dialogue on the future of libraries: Sustainability and libraries – agenda 2030
18.01.21, Online-Event
“Libraries are not only sustainable institutions per se, but they also make an intensive contribution to raising awareness of the need for a sustainable society. To this end they provide information, organize projects and support sustainable engagement. Why libraries in the Netherlands and in Germany play an important social role here, how they can contribute to this and what examples are available will be presented and discussed. How the international library associations like IFLA and EBLIDA support this global challenge will also be a topic in this online-seminar.”
Organised by: Erasmus University Library Rotterdam


ALA Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits
22.01.21 – 26.01.21, Online-Event
“Symposium on the Future of Libraries, offering sessions on future trends to inspire innovation in libraries, “News You Can Use” with updates that highlight new research, innovations, and advances in libraries.”
Organised by: American Library Association


PIDapalooza 2021: The Open Festival of Persistent Identifiers
27.01.21, Online-Event
“Festival of persistent identifiers. Sessions around the broad theme of PIDs and Open Research Infrastructure.”
Organised by: CDL, Crossref, DataCite, NISO and ORCID


FEBRUARY 2021

Education for Data Science
07.02.21 – 09.02.21, Jerusalem (Israel)
“How Data Science should be taught in academic institutions and what kind of training and retraining can help support the need for new professionals in the data science ecosystem.”
Organised by: Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, CODATA


Fake News: Impact on Society 4/4
08.02.21, Online-Event
“This event offers research into the concept of fake news and its impact in modern society:
Strengthening information literacy in the time of COVID-19: the role and contributions of the National Library of Singapore. News analytics in LIS Education and Practice.”
Organised by: News Media, Digital Humanities, FAIFE, and CLM


Open Science Festival
11.02.21, Online-Event
“Open Science stands for the transition to a new, more open and participatory way of conducting, publishing and evaluating scholarly research. Central to this concept is the goal of increasing cooperation and transparency in all research stages. The National Open Science Festival provides researchers the opportunity to learn about the benefits of various Open Science practices. It is a place to meet peers that are already working openly or that are interested to start doing so. Key to this day is sharing knowledge and best practices.”
Organised by: NPOS project Accelerate Open Science


Barcamp Open Science 2021
16.02.21, Online-Event
“Discussing and learning more about, and sharing experiences on practices in Open Science.”
Organised by: Leibniz Research Alliance Open Science


Open Science Conference 2021
17.02.21 – 19.02.21, Online-Event
“This conference will especially focus on the effects and impact of (global) crises and associated societal challenges, such as the Corona pandemic or the climate change, to open research practices and science communication in the context of the digitisation of science. And vice versa, how open practices help to cope with crises. Overall, the conference addresses topics around Open Science such as: Effects and impact of current crises on open research practices and science communication – Learnings from crises to sustainably ensure the opening of science in the future – Innovations to support Open Science practices and their application and acceptance in scientific communities – Scientific benefit of Open Science practices and their impact in society such as coping with crises – Open Science education and science communication to different target groups in the broad public.”
Organised by: Leibniz Research Alliance Open Science


MARCH 2021

3. Workshop Retrodigitalisierung: „OCR – Prozesse und Entwicklungen“
01.03.21, Online-Event
“Digitalisierung bietet neue Erschließungsmöglichkeiten, auch und vor allem durch gute Texterkennungsprogramme. Die Optical Character Recognition (OCR) ist ein Werkzeug, von dessen Qualität die Durchsuchbarkeit von Texten maßgeblich beeinflusst wird. Der Workshop befasst sich daher mit Prozessen und Entwicklungen in der OCR – einem wichtigen Bestandteil aller Digitalisierungsprojekte.”
Organised by: ZB MED, TIB, ZBW and Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz


Open Data Day 2021
06.03.21, Online-Event
“Open Data Day is an annual celebration of open data all over the world. Groups from around the world create local events on the day where they will use open data in their communities. It is an opportunity to show the benefits of open data and encourage the adoption of open data policies in government, business and civil society.”
Organised by: Open Knowledge Foundation


2. Bibliothekspolitischer Bundeskongress: Bibliotheken im digitalen Wandel: Orte der Partizipation und des gesellschaftlichen Zusammenhalts
26.03.21, Online-Event
“Bibliotheken im digitalen Wandel: Orte der Partizipation und des gesellschaftlichen Zusammenhalts“ – miteinander über bibliothekspolitische Fragen ins Gespräch zu kommen.”
Organised by: German Library Association (dbv)


APRIL 2021

Webinar Serie: German-Dutch dialogue on the future of libraries: Central services for public libraries
12.04.21, Online-Event
“The national library (KB) in the Netherlands offers central digital services to public libraries and to patrons as well. How these services were initiated in the past and how the situation is currently will be presented and compared with the situation in Germany. Because of the political system and the cultural sovereignty of the federal states, the support of smaller public libraries in Germany is not centralized, but so called “Fachstellen” in various federal states offer services to their libraries. This system, its tasks and services are presented – decentralised or centralised support for public libraries – what are the advantages and disadvantages? And what effects will the pandemic have to these services in the future? How will the idea of the third place be connected with the need to offer mobile services for the library users during and after corona?”
Organised by: Erasmus University Library Rotterdam


MAY 2021

IASSIST 2021: Data by Design – Building a Sustainable Data Culture
May, Online-Event
“The conference theme, “Data by Design: Building a Sustainable Data Culture”, emphasizes two core values embedded in the culture of Gothenburg and Sweden: design and sustainability. We invite you to explore these topics further, and discuss what they could mean to data communities. As a member of IASSIST, you are already part of at least one data community. Your other data communities may be across departments, within organizations, or among groups in different countries. How are these groups helping design a culture of practices around data that will persist across organizations and over time?”
Organised by: Swedish National Data Service (SND)


Library Publishing Virtual Forum
10.05.21 – 14.05.21 Online-Event
“This is an annual conference bringing together representatives from libraries engaged in (or considering) publishing initiatives to define and address major questions and challenges; to identify and document collaborative opportunities; and to strengthen and promote this community of practice.”
Organised by: Library Publishing Coalition (LPC)


JUNE 2021

Deutscher Bibliothekarstag: forward to far
15.06.21 – 18.06.21, Bremen (Germany)
“Alternative room concepts, Inventory management, Library management, Library education, Blended Library Concepts, Community building, Digitale editions, Digitization of the teaching, Discovery and eBooks, Electronic Resource Management – and much more.”
Organised by: The Association of German Librarians (VDB – Verein Deutscher Bibliothekarinnen und Bibliothekare) and Berufsverband Information Bibliothek e.V. (BIB)


IASSIST 2021/CESSDA: Data by Design – Building a Sustainable Data Culture
30.06.21 – 02.07.21, Gothenburg (Sweden)
“The conference theme, “Data by Design: Building a Sustainable Data Culture”, emphasizes two core values embedded in the culture of Gothenburg and Sweden: design and sustainability. We invite you to explore these topics further, and discuss what they could mean to data communities. As a member of IASSIST, you are already part of at least one data community. Your other data communities may be across departments, within organizations, or among groups in different countries. How are these groups helping design a culture of practices around data that will persist across organizations and over time?”
Organised by: Swedish National Data Service (SND)


JULY 2021

ICOSRP 2021: International Conference on Open Science Research Philosophy
19.07.21 – 20.07.21, Helsinki (Finland)
“All aspects of Open Science Research Philosophy.”
Organised by: International Research Conference


SEPTEMBER 2021

OA-Tage 2021
27.09.21 – 29.09.21 Bern (Switzerland)
“Open Access und Open Science.”
Organised by: open-access.network


OCTOBER 2021

FORCE2021
18.10.21 – 20.10.21 San Sebastián (Spain)
“At a FORCE11 annual conference stakeholders come together for an open discussion, on an even playing field, to talk about changing the ways scholarly and scientific information is communicated, shared and used. Researchers, publishers, librarians, computer scientists, informaticians, funders, educators, citizens, and others attend the FORCE11 meeting with a view to supporting the realization of promising new ideas and identifying new potential collaborators.”
Organised by: Force11


Events 2021: How to stay up to date

These are our event tips for the Open Science and library world for 2021. Of course, there will be more exciting conferences, workshops, barcamps and other formats in the course of the year. We will collect them for you in our event calendar on ZBW MediaTalk! To keep up to date with interesting events, you can either check there from time to time or subscribe to our newsletter, in which we will regularly inform you about new highlights on the Open Science and library event horizon: sign up for the ZBW MediaTalk newsletter.

Is an event missing?

Do you have an event tip that is not yet listed in our event calendar? Then we would be happy if you would let us know.

Further reading tips for event organisers:

Do you organise events yourself and are looking for tips on how to make them even better? We have been dealing with this more frequently lately:

Decision-making aids for event attendance: highlights 2020

Despite Corona, there were many conferences, workshops, barcamps & co. worth visiting in 2020. We wrote about some of them in ZBW MediaTalk. So if you are thinking about attending one of the events we recommend, our review will certainly help you make your decision:

References Portrait: Photo Claudia Sittner©

This text has been translated from German.

The post Open Science & Libraries 2021: 20 Tips for Conferences, Barcamps & Co. first appeared on ZBW MediaTalk.The post Open Science & Libraries 2021: 20 Tips for Conferences, Barcamps & Co. first appeared on Leibniz Research Alliance Open Science.