Interviews with the lab protocol community – insights from an Academic Editor and a reviewer – EveryONE

“What do you think are the benefits of lab protocols for open science?

RK: PLOS ONE journal in collaboration with has developed a unique and state-of-the-art platform for publishing lab protocols. This is a well-timed and useful innovation. The development of scientific knowledge is based on a variety of methodological approaches bordering on art. Because of the increasing complexity of scientific methods and their diversity, an appropriate forum or open science platform is needed, where the research community can present the best solution and point out the problems that may be encountered in other laboratories. Such a platform should of course be open, and in this form, it is really effective.

AF: Improving data reproducibility in research is one of today’s most important issues to address. Providing clear and detailed protocols, without limitation of words or space, is an effective way to communicate optimized protocols. This will directly help to improve data reproducibility between labs, as well as provide a thorough record of procedures that have been published in parallel. Improving communication of optimized protocols helps to drive robust research, allowing people to build their own research on already thorough studies, and not spend excessive time optimizing protocols based on poorly executed or explained protocols. …”

Spend less time looking for articles with accessible datasets – The Official PLOS Blog

“We’re testing a new experimental open science feature intended to promote data sharing and reuse across the PLOS journal portfolio. A subset of PLOS articles that link to shared research data in a repository will display a prominent visual cue designed to help researchers find accessible data, and encourage best practice in data sharing….”

PLOS launches new feature to promote data sharing and access

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) today announced that it is testing a new experimental open science feature intended to promote data sharing and reuse across the PLOS journal portfolio. A subset of PLOS articles that link to shared research data in a repository will now display a prominent visual cue designed to help researchers find accessible data. Sharing research data that support published articles is considered best practice as it promotes data discovery and reuse, and aligns with the Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR) data principles.

Data sharing practices across knowledge domains: a dynamic examination of data availability statements in PLOS ONE publications

Abstract:  As the importance of research data gradually grows in sciences, data sharing has come to be encouraged and even mandated by journals and funders in recent years. Following this trend, the data availability statement has been increasingly embraced by academic communities as a means of sharing research data as part of research articles. This paper presents a quantitative study of which mechanisms and repositories are used to share research data in PLOS ONE articles. We offer a dynamic examination of this topic from the disciplinary and temporal perspectives based on all statements in English-language research articles published between 2014 and 2020 in the journal. We find a slow yet steady growth in the use of data repositories to share data over time, as opposed to sharing data in the paper or supplementary materials; this indicates improved compliance with the journal’s data sharing policies. We also find that multidisciplinary data repositories have been increasingly used over time, whereas some disciplinary repositories show a decreasing trend. Our findings can help academic publishers and funders to improve their data sharing policies and serve as an important baseline dataset for future studies on data sharing activities.


Which solutions best support sharing and reuse of code? – The Official PLOS Blog

“PLOS has released a preprint and supporting data on research conducted to understand the needs and habits of researchers in relation to code sharing and reuse as well as to gather feedback on prototype code notebooks and help determine strategies that publishers could use to increase code sharing.

Our previous research led us to implement a mandatory code sharing policy at PLOS Computational Biology in March 2021 to increase the amount of code shared alongside published articles. As well as exploring policy to support code sharing, we have also been collaborating with NeuroLibre, an initiative of the Canadian Open Neuroscience Platform, to learn more about the potential role of technological solutions for enhancing code sharing. Neurolibre is one of a growing number of interactive or executable technologies for sharing and publishing research, some of which have become integrated with publishers’ workflows….”

PLOS Expands Footprint in Sweden With a New Publishing Agreement With the Bibsam Consortium

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) today announced an agreement with the Bibsam Consortium to participate in PLOS’ three innovative publishing models. This two-year agreement provides researchers from affiliated institutions with unlimited publishing privileges in PLOS journals without incurring fees.

New options for posting a medRxiv preprint at PLOS

Starting today, PLOS Global Public Health and PLOS Digital Health, will join the other PLOS journals publishing medical research in giving submitting authors the option to have their manuscript forwarded to medRxiv to be considered for posting as a preprint. In offering this free service, we aim to make preprint posting simple and easy, giving researchers more flexibility in how they choose to communicate their science. Researchers, of course, also remain free to post to medRxiv or another preprint server prior to submitting.

Open Data – PLOS

“Publishing in a PLOS journal carries with it a commitment to make the data underlying the conclusions in your research article publicly available upon publication.

Our data policy underscores the rigor of the research we publish, and gives readers a fuller understanding of each study….”

PLOS Sustainability and Transformation publishes first papers

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) today announced that PLOS Sustainability and Transformation published its initial cohort of papers. The journal’s mission is to empower key decision makers to take immediate action for the sustainability of our environment, our economy, and the societies around the world who depend on it. The journal has so far received more than 70 submissions from researchers around the world.

PLOS Announces New Publishing Agreement with the Consortium of Swiss Academic Libraries – The Official PLOS Blog

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) and the Consortium of Swiss Academic Libraries (CSAL) today announced a three-year Open Access agreement that allows researchers to publish in PLOS’ suite of journals[1] without incurring Article Processing Charges (APCs). This partnership brings together two organizations that believe researchers should be able to access content freely and make their work available publicly, regardless of their access to grant funds.

U of T Libraries expands students’ access to scientific journals – The Varsity

“On January 27, University of Toronto Libraries announced a new agreement with the Public Library of Science (PLOS), an open access publisher with a library of scientific journals. The new agreement expands U of T’s access to 12 PLOS journals and will allow U of T researchers to publish an unlimited number of articles on the journals’ websites without charge. It also provides “[a] 25% discount to non-U of T corresponding authors for papers where U of T researchers are co-authors.”

The topic of accessibility to scientific journals has garnered more attention in passing years, and a study from 2021 showed that the average article processing charge paid by authors has increased. As article processing charges have continued to increase over the past decade and inflated the costs of research as a result, librarians have stepped in to promote open access to academic research to make these services more affordable for students….”

PLOS Water publishes first papers

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) today announced that PLOS Water has published its initial cohort of papers. The journal’s mission is to connect researchers across the hydrology, water resources, and water, sanitation and hygiene communities, amplifying a diverse set of voices to influence the global discourse around water. The journal has so far received more than 60 submissions from researchers around the world.

Open Access Doesn’t Need APCs Part II: Making inclusion our foundation with Global Equity – The Official PLOS Blog

“That gave us an opportunity to try something new: supporting the cost of Open Access publication in a regionally equitable way….

Inclusion is the foundation of these journals. From their broad scopes, to the diversity of the editorial boards who will shape content, policies, and practices reflective of the research communities working in these fields. As spaces that will drive rigorous, evidence-based approaches to global challenges, authors of all backgrounds should feel like they have a place to make their research heard in these journals. To support them, we needed inclusion to be built into our foundation—including an alternative to APCs.


Like our other institutional partnership models, the Global Equity model provides a pathway for institutions to cover the cost of unlimited publications for their authors and eliminate APCs. What makes this model different, is that partnership fees for each institution are adjusted by World Bank lending tier groups to be more reflective of their regional economy….”