‘A Toolkit for Knowledge Rights Advocacy’ – KR21 Workshop Report – LIBER Europe

“During the LIBER Annual Conference in July, Knowledge Rights 21 held the workshop “A Toolkit for Knowledge Rights Advocacy”. Organisers Stephen Wyber (Director of Policy and Advocacy, IFLA) and Giannis Tsakonas (Director, Library & Information Centre, University of Patras and LIBER Vice President) took an engaging and interactive approach to trigger participants’ reflections and motivate them to join the growing KR21 movement. KR21 is advocating for progressive and positive change in the way we provide access to knowledge – both on the ground and through legal reform….”

Report from ‘Equity in OA’ workshop #4 – part 2: Trust as the new prestige – OASPA

“In workshop #4, participants discussed how part of the solution to perceptions of low quality OA publishing is positively defining what good or trustworthy OA publishing is, and so, help identify reliable publishing venues. 

The consensus amongst workshop participants was that a focus on the process and quality-assurance practices that a publisher (or journal / book / platform) follows is the best way to inspire trust. And that this matters more than the abstract and flawed concept of prestige. A philosophy that therefore emerged in workshop #4 was to drive a shift away from prestigious and towards trusted publishing venues – the latter judged by publishing processes and practices.

Participants discussed how some kitemarks already hint at publishing venues that can be, and are, trusted, such as COPE membership, DOAJ listing and OASPA membership. 

A new (and as yet unreleased) rubric for measuring publishers by their practices is also in development within the librarian community. This underscores the thinking that process and transparency are important….”

REPORT: Best Practices for Institutional Publishing Service Providers – DIAMAS

“DIAMAS plans to improve Open Access publishing practices. To do so, we will create Extensible Quality Standard for Institutional Publishing (EQSIP), which aim to ensure the quality and transparency of governance, processes and workflows in institutional publishing. The Best practices report is an initial step in this process.

The report is based on an analysis of existing quality evaluation criteria, best practices, and assessment systems in publishing developed by international publishers’ associations, research funding organisations, international indexing databases, etc (full dataset available here). If you are an institutional publisher, a service provider involved in Open Access publishing, or a journal editor, this report can help you learn about current best practices and identify where you need to align.

Our recommendations and tips cover seven categories, which are also the core components of the Extensible Quality Standard for Institutional Publishing (EQSIP): 1) Funding; 2) Ownership and governance; 3) Open science practices; 4) Editorial quality, editorial management, and research integrity; 5) Technical service efficiency; 6) Visibility; and 7) Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI).

A self-assessment checklist summarises the best practices outlined in the report. Institutional publishers, service providers and journal editors can use it to get an idea of the future Extensible Quality Standard for Institutional Publishing (EQSIP), and assess their current practices and see where to make improvements.”

Taubert et. al. (2023) Understanding differences of the OA uptake within the Germany university landscape (2010-2020) — Part 2: repository-provided OA | ArXiv

by Niels Taubert, Anne Hobert, Najko Jahn, Andre Bruns, Elham Iravani


This study investigates the determinants for the uptake of institutional and subject repository Open Access (OA) in the university landscape of Germany and considers three factors: the disciplinary profile of universities, their OA infrastructures and services and large transformative agreements. The uptake of OA as well as the determinants are measured by combining several data sources (incl. Web of Science, Unpaywall, an authority file of standardised German affiliation information, the ISSN-Gold-OA 4.0 list, and lists of publications covered by transformative agreements). For universities OA infrastructures and services, a structured data collection was created by harvesting different sources of information and by manual online search. To determine the explanatory power of the different factors, a series of regression analyses was performed for different periods and for both institutional as well as subject repository OA. As a result of the regression analyses, the most determining factor for the explanation of differences in the uptake of both repository OA-types turned out to be the disciplinary profile, whereas all variables that capture local infrastructural support and services for OA turned out to be non-significant. The outcome of the regression analyses is contextualised by an interview study conducted with 20 OA officers of German universities. The contextualisation provides hints that the original function of institutional repositories, offering a channel for secondary publishing is vanishing, while a new function of aggregation of metadata and full texts is becoming of increasing importance.

TOME Project Final Report Published – Association of University Presses

“The Association of American Universities, the Association of Research Libraries, and the Association of University Presses have published a final report assessing the success of their five-year pilot project to encourage sustainable digital publication of and public access to scholarly books.

The associations launched the Toward an Open Monograph Ecosystem (TOME) project in 2018 to publish humanities and social science scholarship on the internet, where these peer-reviewed works can be fully integrated into the larger network of scholarly and scientific research. The project engaged a network of more than 60 university presses and ultimately produced more than 150 open-access scholarly works. The books cover a wide range of topics in many disciplines, including philosophy, history, political science, sociology, and gender and ethnic studies….”

the source / Introducing the All-New Journalytics Academic & Predatory Reports

“We have some exciting news to share – a new and improved Journalytics Academic & Predatory Reports platform will soon be here. Our team has been working on multiple updates and enhancements to our tried and true platform that will benefit users in multiple ways. Along with our ongoing addition of new verified and predatory journals, users will experience better search results, new data points and visualizations, increased stability and speed, and more secure logins.

In addition to the visual elements and expanded analytics of this redesign, a key component is the full integration of our Journalytics and Predatory Reports databases. This integration will allow for comprehensive searches that present the full range of publishing opportunities and threats in a given area. Our goal is to facilitate journal discovery and evaluation so our users know the journals and know the risks.

Last month we hosted a webinar to give users a sneak peek at the upcoming changes, which include a new guided search page to jumpstart journal discovery, updated platform and journal card designs, and new data points such as fees and article output. Check out the video below or visit our YouTube channel where you’ll find a time-stamped table of contents in the description for easy navigation to specific points in the video….”

DIAMAS D.1.3 Towards an enhanced and aligned institutional publishing landscape in the ERA | Zenodo

Rooryck, Johan, & Mounier, Pierre. (2023). D.1.3 Towards an enhanced and aligned institutional publishing landscape in the ERA (V1.0). Zenodo. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.8202169


This preliminary policy document calls for increased alignment in institutional publishing along several dimensions: (1) geographical (i.e. national, regional, and global), (2) disciplines and epistemic traditions, and (3) types of stakeholders (institutions, publishers, service providers, scholarly societies, journal editors), to benefit the work of researchers and thus enable science to progress faster.


The latest Ithaka S+R draft report is hugely regressive | Martin Paul Eve

by Martin Eve

I have read, with some dismay, the draft of Ithaka S+R’s most recent report. I offer here some critical remarks that I hope will allow for revision of the work, which I believe offers an insular, digital-nationalist, exclusionary vision for the future of scholarly communications. The views herein are my personal take, not those of any organization for which I work.

First, structurally, the report is subheaded “Strategic Context and Shared Infrastructure”. It actually takes about 15 pages to get to anything that I would even vaguely deem to be “infrastructure”. But hey. But that’s not all. The report tells us that they interviewed 49 “infrastructure service providers, publishers, librarians, advocates, analysts, funders, and policy makers”. This is most admirable. The only problem is that, already, interviewees are publicly stating that they cannot find the contents of their interviews reflected in the report. Hmm.

OK, so then we wade through several pages of generic corporate speak about business models, which conveniently omits to mention the recent realisation by many publishers that APCs are not the future. But we then hit the first really problematic aspect: AI. But what do you think the future of scholarly communication might hold in this space? Perhaps cures for cancer? Perhaps an erasure of discrimination against non-English speakers, who now can write in entirely correct scientific English? Nope: “This has led to questions among publishers about how to monetize their publications as training data for commercial AI services”.

Clearly, not all interviewees were happy with this stance: “Some interviewees were highly critical of capitalism and/or commercial organizations, at least with respect to scholarly communication and its infrastructure. Several are concerned about the profitability of commercial providers and worry that commercial interests diverge from those of the academy, of researchers, or of science.” But this only gets a relatively brief outing as a concept.



Research at the Heart of Europe’s Ambition – 2022 Annual Report | Science Europe

The report traces the most significant milestones of Science Europe from last year.

In 2022 the association joined forces with partners in the wider research community and engaged in meaningful dialogue with key stakeholders at the EU and international level with the final goal of ensuring high-quality science for the benefit of society.

Science Europe put a spotlight on brain circulation, aiming to reduce disparity in R&I, and initiated an important dialogue on ethics and integrity in the context of public engagement of research in society. Our values framework for the organisation of research set the foundation for a common reference towards healthier and more effective research culture. Our conference on Open Science and the accompanying direction paper reflected a dynamic acceleration in the transition to Open Science. 

We also shed light on the role of science in addressing societal challenges by analysing interdisciplinary research for the green and digital transition. Additionally, we launched a visionary plan for science communication.


Report from Equity in Open Access workshop #3: Making waves in APC & waiver practice – OASPA

“Whether you love or loathe them, APCs (article processing charges) are now an increasingly common feature across many open access (OA) journals. A reading list that appears at the end of this post shows how evidence is mounting regarding the negative impact APCs are having on some authors being able to publish their research OA. This is despite the established system of waivers and discounts for APCs, and despite the emergence and growth of transformative agreements. 

Discussions at the first two Equity in OA workshops led OASPA (and our workshop partners at Information Power) to create a dedicated session on reducing barriers to participation within models relying on per-article payments. This meant putting aside thoughts about all other models and approaches, just for this workshop, and focussing on whether anything can be done to help in the short-term with APCs and waivers….”

OPERAS Annual Report 2022 | Zenodo

“OPERAS is the Research Infrastructure supporting open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities (SSH) in the European Research Area. Its mission is to coordinate and federate resources in Europe to efficiently address the scholarly communication needs of European researchers in the field of SSH.

The OPERAS Annual Report provides a detailed record of the OPERAS AISBL within 2022: News from the OPERAS Assemblies, activieties, Special Interest Groups and projects within 2022. It provides an overview about the main services and FAIR activities as well as the engagement in Europe.”

Defining Open Scholarly Infrastructure: A Review of Relevant Literature | Zenodo

Abstract:  This report outlines IOI’s initial attempt towards a framework for understanding open infrastructure for research and scholarship. For this report, we examined a body of literature that includes works across the fields of anthropology, scholarly communications, international development studies, science and technology studies, and infrastructure studies.


The growing world of open access books | OPERAS Innovation Lab

Authors: Marta B?aszczy?ska, Graham Stone
Reviewers: Jadranka Stojanovski, Ronald Snijder


Welcome on board, scholarly innovation aficionados!

2023 is a very important year for open access books due to the high number and variety of developments supporting them. So, it felt like a great area to focus on with our first blog post from the series Innovation Lab’s Observatory. 

While the Lab aims to bring fresh news about novel approaches to different spheres of scholarly communication, we also wish to summarise and present highlights of important initiatives and projects that support innovation. 

Today’s topic is open access books, using this opportunity to introduce activities of the OPERAS Special Interest Groups (OA Business Models, Open Access Books Network) and projects (OPERAS-P, COPIM, Open Book Futures, PALOMERA) related to book publishing and the recently published ‘Collaborative models for OA book publishers’ white paper by the OPERAS Open Access Business Models Special Interest Group.



Shifting tides: The Open Movement at a Turning Point | Open Future

by Alek Tarkowski and Zuzanna Warso

At the turn of 2022 and 2023, we conducted a series of interviews with leading voices in the open movement. We spoke with professional activists who address openness from varied perspectives and work in different fields of open. Some have been engaged in activism for decades, while others are looking at it with a fresh set of eyes. Many of our interviewees lead organizations advancing openness, and we were particularly interested in talking with those who have been exploring new approaches and strategies.

Our research aims to understand the current state of the open movement, as seen through the eyes of people actively involved in its endeavors and leading organizations within the movement. We want to make sense of shared positions and understand whether there are any clear division lines. We are particularly interested in identifying trends that transform the movement and understanding the challenges and needs of activists and organizations as these changes occur. The report signals a shift to what can be best described as a post-copyright approach to openness. However, while our focus is on how the movement is changing, this does not mean that the whole movement is subject to that shift. There still exists a need for copyright advocacy work in the movement, and many organizations maintain the course developed at the outset.  Nonetheless, we hope that they, too, will find this report’s insights worth examining.

At Open Future, we talk about the future of open and the need to redefine and reimagine some of our goals and activist strategies. We believe that having a perspective that connects the different fields of open activism is valuable. A shared movement identity and a shared advocacy agenda can make our collective effort stronger. With this study, we aim to see whether this perspective is shared and whether it can form a basis for building a shared movement agenda for the decades to come.