Mandating access: assessing the NIH’s public access policy | Economic Policy | Oxford Academic

Abstract:  In April 2008, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) implemented the Public Access Policy (PAP), which mandated that the full text of NIH-supported articles be made freely available on PubMed Central – the NIH’s repository of biomedical research. This paper uses 600,000 NIH articles and a matched comparison sample to examine how the PAP impacted researcher access to the biomedical literature and publishing patterns in biomedicine. Though some estimates allow for large citation increases after the PAP, the most credible estimates suggest that the PAP had a relatively modest effect on citations, which is consistent with most researchers having widespread access to the biomedical literature prior to the PAP, leaving little room to increase access. I also find that NIH articles are more likely to be published in traditional subscription-based journals (as opposed to ‘open access’ journals) after the PAP. This indicates that any discrimination the PAP induced, by subscription-based journals against NIH articles, was offset by other factors – possibly the decisions of editors and submission behaviour of authors.

 

Will Plan S support or pervert Open Access ? | Ouvertures immédiates / Immediate openings

“From its inception, the open access movement has postulated that publishing costs should be controlled by research institutions and funded by redirecting resources after canceling journal subscriptions. In reality, things have proved more complex. Although « transformative agreements” that cover both publishing and reading have rapidly increased the percentage of articles published in open access in some institutions, the details of these agreements are generally kept secret and so their scope is difficult to compare.

Nevertheless, it is clear that making most articles open access but for a fee, if tariffs are not a realistic reflection of actual costs, will explode university library budgets (Harvard estimates this increase at 71%) and mark large differences in the ability to publish. Indeed, this could create a vicious circle whereby well-funded researchers publish more, gain more visibility as well as recognition and, as a result, get more funding.

If Plan S does not explicitly monitor and maintain, within the terms of its open publication requirement, an insurmountable ceiling on publication costs, these perverse effects of budget explosion will be inevitable. This is now where the challenge of communicating public research lies….”

Cite Unseen: Theory and Evidence on the Effect of Open Access on Cites to Academic Articles Across the Quality Spectrum | NBER

Abstract:  Our previous paper (McCabe and Snyder 2014) contained the provocative result that, despite a positive average effect, open access reduces cites to some articles, in particular those published in lower-tier journals. We propose a model in which open access leads more readers to acquire the full text, yielding more cites from some, but fewer cites from those who would have cited the article based on superficial knowledge but who refrain once they learn that the article is a bad match. We test the theory with data for over 200,000 science articles binned by cites received during a pre-study period. Consistent with the theory, the marginal effect of open access is negative for the least-cited articles, positive for the most cited, and generally monotonic for quality levels in between. Also consistent with the theory is a magnification of these effects for articles placed on PubMed Central, one of the broadest open-access platforms, and the differential pattern of results for cites from insiders versus outsiders to the article’s field.

 

A communication strategy based on Twitter improves article citation rate and impact factor of medical journals – ScienceDirect

[Note even an abstract is OA.] 

“Medical journals use Twitter to optimise their visibility on the scientific community. It is by far the most used social media to share publications, since more than 20% of published articles receive at least one announcement on Twitter (compared to less than 5% of notifications on other social networks) [5] . It was initially described that, within a medical specialty, journals with a Twitter account have a higher impact factor than others and that the number of followers is correlated to the impact factor of the journal [67] . Several observational works showed that the announcement of a medical article publication on Twitter was strongly associated with its citation rate in the following years 891011 . In 2015, among anaesthesia journals, journals with an active and influential Twitter account had an higher journal impact factor and a greater number of article citations than those not embracing social media [12] . A meta-analysis of July 2020 concluded that the presence of an article on social media was probably associated with a higher number of citations [13] . Finally, two randomised studies, published in 2020 and not included in this meta-analysis, also showed that, for a given journal, articles that benefited from exposure on Twitter were 1.5 to 9 times more cited in the year following publication than articles randomised in the “no tweeting” group [1415] 

The majority of these works have only been published very recently and the strategy for using Twitter to optimise the number of citations is now a challenge for all medical journals. Several retrospective studies have looked at the impact of the use of a social media communication strategy by medical journals. They have shown that the introduction of Twitter to communicate as part of this strategy was associated with a higher number of articles consulted, a higher number of citations and shorter delays in citation after publication [1617] . Two studies (including one on anaesthesia journals) showed that journals that used a Twitter account to communicate were more likely to increase their impact factor than those that did not [1218] . Some researchers even suggest that the dissemination of medical information through social media, allowing quick and easy access after the peer-review publication process, may supplant the classical academic medical literature in the future [19] . This evolution has led to the creation of a new type of Editor in several medical journal editorial boards: the social media Editor (sometimes with the creation of a “specialised social media team” to assist him or her) [20] . This medical Editor shares, across a range of social media platforms, new journal articles with the aim of improving dissemination of journal content. Thus, beyond the scientific interest of a given article, which determines its chances of being cited, there is currently a parallel Editorial work consisting in optimising the visibility on Twitter to increase the number of citations and improve the impact factor. Some authors also start to focus on the best techniques for using Twitter and on the best ways to tweet to optimise communication, for example during a medical congress [21] ….”

 

[2011.11940] Preprints as accelerator of scholarly communication: An empirical analysis in Mathematics

Abstract:  In this study we analyse the key driving factors of preprints in enhancing scholarly communication. To this end we use four groups of metrics, one referring to scholarly communication and based on bibliometric indicators (Web of Science and Scopus citations), while the others reflect usage (usage counts in Web of Science), capture (Mendeley readers) and social media attention (Tweets). Hereby we measure two effects associated with preprint publishing: publication delay and impact. We define and use several indicators to assess the impact of journal articles with previous preprint versions in arXiv. In particular, the indicators measure several times characterizing the process of arXiv preprints publishing and the reviewing process of the journal versions, and the ageing patterns of citations to preprints. In addition, we compare the observed patterns between preprints and non-OA articles without any previous preprint versions in arXiv. We could observe that the “early-view” and “open-access” effects of preprints contribute to a measurable citation and readership advantage of preprints. Articles with preprint versions are more likely to be mentioned in social media and have shorter Altmetric attention delay. Usage and capture prove to have only moderate but stronger correlation with citations than Tweets. The different slopes of the regression lines between the different indicators reflect different order of magnitude of usage, capture and citation data.

 

Towards societal impact through open research | Springer Nature | For Researchers | Springer Nature

“Open research is fundamentally changing the way that researchers communicate and collaborate to advance the pace and quality of discovery. New and dynamic open research-driven workflows are emerging, thus increasing the findability, accessibility, and reusability of results. Distribution channels are changing too, enabling others — from patients to businesses, to teachers and policy makers — to increasingly benefit from new and critical insights. This in turn has dramatically increased the societal impact of open research. But what remains less clear is the exact nature and scope of this wider impact as well as the societal relevance of the underpinning research….”

 

Gold Open Access research has greater societal impact as used more outside of academia | Corporate Affairs Homepage | Springer Nature

“What impact does open research have on society and progressing global societal challenges?  The latest results of research carried out between Springer Nature, the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU) and the Dutch University Libraries and the National Library consortium (UKB), illustrates a substantial advantage for content published via the Gold OA route where research is immediately and freely accessible.

Since the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were launched in 2015, researchers, their funders and other collaborative partnerships have sought to explore the impact and contribution of open research on SDG development. However – until now – it has been challenging to map, and therefore identify, emerging trends and best practice for the research and wider community. Through a bibliometric analysis of nearly 360,000 documents published in 2017 and a survey of nearly 6,000 readers on Springer Nature websites, the new white paper, Open for All, Exploring the Reach of Open Access Content to Non-Academic Audiences shows not only the effects of content being published OA but more importantly who that research is reaching.”

An altmetric attention advantage for open access books in the humanities and social sciences | SpringerLink

Abstract:  The last decade has seen two significant phenomena emerge in research communication: the rise of open access (OA) publishing, and the easy availability of evidence of online sharing in the form of altmetrics. There has been limited examination of the effect of OA on online sharing for journal articles, and little for books. This paper examines the altmetrics of a set of 32,222 books (of which 5% are OA) and a set of 220,527 chapters (of which 7% are OA) indexed by the scholarly database Dimensions in the Social Sciences and Humanities. Both OA books and chapters have significantly higher use on social networks, higher coverage in the mass media and blogs, and evidence of higher rates of social impact in policy documents. OA chapters have higher rates of coverage on Wikipedia than their non-OA equivalents, and are more likely to be shared on Mendeley. Even within the Humanities and Social Sciences, disciplinary differences in altmetric activity are evident. The effect is confirmed for chapters, although sampling issues prevent the strong conclusion that OA facilitates extra attention at the whole book level, the apparent OA altmetrics advantage suggests that the move towards OA is increasing social sharing and broader impact.

 

If I tweet will you cite later? Follow-up on the effect of social media exposure on article downloads and citations | SpringerLink

Abstract:  Objectives

We previously reported that random assignment of scientific articles to a social media exposure intervention did not have an effect on article downloads and citations. In this paper, we investigate whether longer observation time after exposure to a social media intervention has altered the previously reported results.

Methods

For articles published in the International Journal of Public Health between December 2012 and December 2014, we updated article download and citation data for a minimum of 24-month follow-up. We re-analysed the effect of social media exposure on article downloads and citations.

Results

There was no difference between intervention and control group in terms of downloads (p?=?0.72) and citations (p=?0.30) for all papers and when we stratified by open access status.

Conclusions

Longer observation time did not increase the relative differences in the numbers of downloads and citations between papers in the social media intervention group and papers in the control group. Traditional impact metrics based on citations, such as impact factor, may not capture the added value of social media for scientific publications.

Flipping the switch: how a hybrid journal went open access – Physics World

Tell us about Materials Research Express (MRX)?

MRX is an open-access journal that focuses on interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research. Published by IOP Publishing, which publishes Physics World, it is devoted to publishing new experimental and theoretical research in the properties, characterization, design and fabrication of all classes of materials including biomaterials, nanomaterials, polymers, smart materials, electronics, thin films and more. The journal, which offers rapid peer review, has an international editorial board that is led by the journal’s editor-in-chief, Meyya Meyyappan from NASA’s Ames Research Centre in the US….”

Do open access journal articles experience a citation advantage? Results and methodological reflections of an application of multiple measures to an analysis by WoS subject areas | SpringerLink

Abstract:  This study is one of the first that uses the recently introduced open access (OA) labels in the Web of Science (WoS) metadata to investigate whether OA articles published in Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) listed journals experience a citation advantage in comparison to subscription journal articles, specifically those of which no self-archived versions are available. Bibliometric data on all articles and reviews indexed in WoS, and published from 2013 to 2015, were analysed. In addition to normalised citation score (NCS), we used two additional measures of citation advantage: whether an article was cited at all; and whether an article is among the most frequently cited percentile of articles within its respective subject area (pptopX %). For each WoS subject area, the strength of the relationship between access status (whether an article was published in an OA journal) and each of these three measures was calculated. We found that OA journal articles experience a citation advantage in very few subject areas and, in most of these subject areas, the citation advantage was found on only a single measure of citation advantage, namely whether the article was cited at all. Our results lead us to conclude that access status accounts for little of the variability in the number of citations an article accumulates. The methodology and the calculations that were used in this study are described in detail and we believe that the lessons we learnt, and the recommendations we make, will be of much use to future researchers interested in using the WoS OA labels, and to the field of citation advantage in general.

 

 

The relationship between highly-cited papers and the frequency of citations to other papers within-issue among three top information science journals | SpringerLink

Abstract:  This study investigates a potential relationship between highly-cited scholarly papers and the number of citations received by other papers with which they share a journal issue. Citations received by 3675 articles across 484 issues published in three top information science journals are analyzed based on the condition of whether an article was published in an issue that includes a “highly-cited” paper (two standard deviations above mean number by year). The findings indicate a statistically significant effect of highly-cited papers and citations to other papers in the same journal issue. This finding is relevant to authors and publishers when considering the structure of publications with an “issue” format.

 

Citations and metrics of journals discontinued… | F1000Research

Abstract:  Background: Scopus is a leading bibliometric database. It contains a large part of the articles cited in peer-reviewed publications. The journals included in Scopus are periodically re-evaluated to ensure they meet indexing criteria and some journals might be discontinued for ‘publication concerns’. Previously published articles may remain indexed and can be cited. Their metrics have yet to be studied. This study aimed to evaluate the main features and metrics of journals discontinued from Scopus for publication concerns, before and after their discontinuation, and to determine the extent of predatory journals among the discontinued journals.

Methods: We surveyed the list of discontinued journals from Scopus (July 2019). Data regarding metrics, citations and indexing were extracted from Scopus or other scientific databases, for the journals discontinued for publication concerns. 
Results: A total of 317 journals were evaluated. Ninety-three percent of the journals (294/317) declared they published using an Open Access model. The subject areas with the greatest number of discontinued journals were Medicine (52/317; 16%), Agriculture and Biological Science (34/317; 11%), and Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics (31/317; 10%). The mean number of citations per year after discontinuation was significantly higher than before (median of difference 16.89 citations, p<0.0001), and so was the number of citations per document (median of difference 0.42 citations, p<0.0001). Twenty-two percent (72/317) were included in the Cabell’s blacklist. The DOAJ currently included only 9 journals while 61 were previously included and discontinued, most for ‘suspected editorial misconduct by the publisher’.
Conclusions: Journals discontinued for ‘publication concerns’ continue to be cited despite discontinuation and predatory behaviour seemed common. These citations may influence scholars’ metrics prompting artificial career advancements, bonus systems and promotion. Countermeasures should be taken urgently to ensure the reliability of Scopus metrics for the purpose of scientific assessment of scholarly publishing at both journal- and author-level.

Diversifying Readership Through Open Access – Open Access Books Network Blog

“A few years ago, we did some work looking at the effect of open access (OA) on downloads and citations of scholarly books. Our authors were excited to hear about the impact that OA could have on their work, but the next question was always along the lines of, ‘But where are those extra downloads coming from? Is OA actually helping books to achieve a more diverse audience?’ A survey of book authors’ attitudes to OA that we conducted last year confirmed this concern: we found that reaching a broad readership – and reaching non-academic audiences such as policymakers and practitioners – ranked high in book authors’ motivations. Reaching readers in low-income- and lower-middle-income-countries (LICs and LMICs) was particularly important to authors who had published an OA book.

OA books are now in their second decade, but we find many authors are still sceptical, or at any rate unsure if it’s really worth it. Perhaps it seems obvious, or intuitive, that OA expands a book’s readership, but being able to point to evidence for this important benefit can be immensely powerful in making the case for OA to book authors….

Others have asked this question before. Notably, Ronald Snijder’s 2013 study, based on a sample of 180 books, showed that despite a ‘digital divide’ in discovery and use between poorer and richer countries, OA led to increased proportions of usage in LICs and LMICs. Six years later, we are able to re-visit this using a much larger dataset of OA (and non-OA) books, and provide a more detailed exploration of these questions….

So, what did COARD’s analysis find?

OA has a robust effect on the number of downloads, geographical diversity of downloads, and citations of books. Downloads of OA books in the study were on average 10 times higher than those of non-OA books, and citations of OA books were 2.4 times higher on average – an even larger OA effect than we found in our previous research in this area.
For every category of book in the sample there is an increase of at least 2.7-fold in downloads for OA books. The effect was seen for all disciplinary groupings, in HSS and STM, across all three years of publication in the dataset, for all types of book (monographs, contributed volumes, and mid-length books) and for every month after publication.
OA books in the study had a greater proportion of usage in a wider range of countries. They were downloaded in 61% more countries than non-OA books. Importantly, OA books had higher usage in low-income or lower-middle-income countries, including a high number of countries in Africa. Analysis using the Gini coefficient disparity index showed that OA books have quantitatively greater geographic diversity of downloads.
Downloads of OA books from the open web were generally around double those from institutional network points. Of course, we can’t rule out that the open web downloads are simply off-campus downloads from readers who already have institutional access, but the balance between the two, and the fact that the OA books reached so many more countries does point to a more diverse readership….”

Publishing Open Access with Cambridge University Press

“75% of research articles published Open Access in Cambridge University Press journals receive 30-50% more citations than their non-OA equivalents. Join our upcoming webinar to find out how your research can benefit from the increased exposure of Open Access, and how you can submit and publish Open Access at no cost to you thanks to a publishing agreement between the University of Cambridge and Cambridge University Press….”