Evaluating research assessment | Jisc

“A large-scale review, commissioned by Research England on behalf of the four higher education funding bodies and published by RAND Europe, collected attitudes to the REF in real time as UK institutions prepared their submissions. It gathered views via a survey (with 3,000+ researcher responses), as well as focus groups and one-to-one interviews with researchers, research managers, and institutional leads.

The review also considered the impact of changes made to the REF since the previous exercise in 2014….”

Management and maintenance of research data by researchers in Zimbabwe | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose

The concept of research data management (RDM) is new in Zimbabwe and other developing countries. Research institutions are developing research data repositories and promoting the archiving of research data. As a way of creating awareness to researchers on RDM, the purpose of this paper is to determine how researchers are managing their research data and whether they are aware of the developments that are taking place in RDM.


A survey using a mixed method approach was done and an online questionnaire was administered to 100 researchers in thirty research institutions in Zimbabwe. Purposive sampling was done by choosing participants from the authors of articles published in journals indexed by Google Scholar, Scopus and Web of Science. Interviews were done with five top researchers. The data was analysed using NVIVO. The results were presented thematically. The questionnaire was distributed using the research offices of the selected 30 research institutions. There was a 75% response rate.


The findings indicated that all the researchers are aware of the traditional way of managing research data. A total of 70% of the respondents are not aware of the current trends in RDM services, as they are keeping their data on machines and external hard drives, while 97.3% perceive RDM services as useful, as it is now a requirement when applying for research grants. Librarians have a bigger role to play in creating awareness on RDM among researchers and hosting the data repositories for archiving research data.

Practical implications

Research institutions can invest in research data services and develop data repositories. Librarians will participate in educating researchers to come up with data management plans before they embark on a research project. This study also helps to showcase the strategies that can be used in awareness creation campaigns. The findings can also be used in teaching RDM in library schools and influence public policy both at institutional and national level.

Social implications

This study will assist in building capacity among stakeholders about RDM. Based on the findings, research institutions should prioritise research data services to develop skills and knowledge among librarians and researchers.


Few researches on RDM practices in Zimbabwe were done previously. Most of the papers that were published document the perception of librarians towards RDM, but this study focused mainly on researchers’ awareness and perception. The subject is still new and people are beginning to research on it and create awareness amongst the stakeholders in Zimbabwe.

Open Education (OE) in European Libraries of Higher Education Survey 2022

“Welcome to the 2022 edition of SPARC Europe’s Survey of European academic libraries regarding Open Education (OE) and Open Education Resources (OER).

We define OE as resources, tools and practices that are free of legal, financial and technical barriers and can be fully used, shared and adapted in the digital environment.

We define OER as learning, teaching and research materials that reside in the public domain or are under copyright that have been released under an open license, that permit no-cost access, re-use, re-purpose, adaptation and redistribution by others. 

This survey was developed in consultation with members of the European Network of Open Education Librarians (ENOEL): The aim of this survey is to explore the work done by academic librarians to implement the UNESCO OER Recommendation, published in Nov 2019, and is structured around its five areas of action….”

cOAlition S invites the research community to complete the Plan S impact survey | Plan S

“cOAlition S is monitoring developments in the Open Science landscape and is seeking feedback from the research community about their experiences when publishing according to the principles of Plan S. The updated version of the impact survey (following earlier pilots in 2021) seeks to gather specific data from the research community about their publishing practices, experiences and impact on career progression.

The survey is accessible here.

Feedback is anonymous, and all data gathered will be used to help us understand how to support researchers in their varied publishing journeys….”

Rethinking Research Assessment for the Greater Good: Findings from the RPT Project – Scholarly Communications Lab | ScholCommLab

“The review, promotion, and tenure (RPT) process is central to academic life and workplace advancement. It influences where faculty direct their attention, research, and publications. By unveiling the RPT process, we can inform actions that lead towards a greater opening of research. 

Between 2017 and 2022, we conducted a multi-year research project involving the collection and analysis of more than 850 RPT guidelines and 338 surveys with scholars from 129 research institutions across Canada and the US. Starting with a literature review of academic promotion and tenure processes, we launched six studies applying mixed methods approaches such as surveys and matrix coding.

So how do today’s universities and colleges incentivize open access research? Read on for 6 key takeaways from our studies….”

SurveyMonkey Powered Online Survey

“Thank you in advance for taking the time to respond to this survey about eLife. It should take no more than 10 minutes to complete. 


We seek to transform research communication and we’d love to hear your thoughts related to initiatives we’ve got underway.

All questions are optional. Your feedback is anonymous and it will help us better understand the expectations of the community and drive change and innovation in scientific and medical publishing….”

At what point do academics forego citations for journal status? | Impact of Social Sciences

“The limitations of journal based citation metrics for assessing individual researchers are well known. However, the way in which these assessment systems differentially shape research practices within disciplines is less well understood. Presenting evidence from a new analysis of business and management academics, Rossella Salandra and Ammon Salter and James Walker¸ explore how journal status is valued by these academics and the point at which journal status becomes more prized than academic influence….”

At what point do academics forego citations for journal status? | Impact of Social Sciences

“The limitations of journal based citation metrics for assessing individual researchers are well known. However, the way in which these assessment systems differentially shape research practices within disciplines is less well understood. Presenting evidence from a new analysis of business and management academics, Rossella Salandra and Ammon Salter and James Walker¸ explore how journal status is valued by these academics and the point at which journal status becomes more prized than academic influence….”

Learned societies promoting responsible research – Findings from the member society survey | tsv.fi

The promotion of scientific activities and general understanding of science are at the heart of the operations of learned societies. Some societies are active in the areas of open science and research evaluation, whereas tasks related to research integrity play only a minor role in their activities.

In November 2021, the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies carried out a survey amongst its member societies focusing on their activities related to the promotion of responsible research. Of the 291 member societies, a total of 116 societies representing various fields responded to the survey. 

The survey examined the objectives and operations of the societies, as well as their participation in the promotion of responsible research in the areas of open science, research integrity and research evaluation. Responsible research promotes reliable and collectively accepted practices of producing, publishing and evaluating research-based knowledge. Responsible research is present in the activities of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies and the research support bodies associated with it: the Open Science Coordination, the Publication Forum (JUFO), the Committee for Public Information (TJNK) and the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity TENK.


Implementation of promotion standards to discourage publishing in questionable journals: the role of the library – ScienceDirect

Abstract:  To discourage faculty members from publishing in questionable journals, tenure and promotion standards in which the librarians play an active role can been developed. These standards have been effective in terms of identifying publications in questionable outlets. However, we need to explore how these systems are perceived by the main actors in research, which are the researchers. This study explores the perception of the researchers at a university in Ghana who have been evaluated by a system implemented to discourage publishing in questionable publication outlets. We collected data using an online, largely qualitative questionnaire distributed to all faculty members that had applied for promotion since the implementation of the verification process. The results show that the majority of the faculty members are satisfied or very satisfied with the new tenure and promotion standards. There are differences across faculties, and this seems to be tied to concerns about the choice of publication outlets. Furthermore, the dissatisfied faculty members are concerned with the role of the library in the verification process whereas the satisfied trust the judgement of the librarians. We discuss implications of the results as well as future development of the standards.


Economists want to see changes to their peer review system. Let’s do something about it. | VOX, CEPR Policy Portal

Peer review is central to the evaluation of research, but surprisingly little is known about its inner workings. This column presents the results of a survey of over 1,400 economists asking about their experiences with the system. The findings suggest that there are opportunities for improvement in the allocation and production of referee reports, as well as in the length of the process. The authors consider an assortment of proposals to address these issues, some of which command broad support from our respondents.

What do participants think of our research practices? An examination of behavioural psychology participants’ preferences | Royal Society Open Science

Abstract:  What research practices should be considered acceptable? Historically, scientists have set the standards for what constitutes acceptable research practices. However, there is value in considering non-scientists’ perspectives, including research participants’. 1873 participants from MTurk and university subject pools were surveyed after their participation in one of eight minimal-risk studies. We asked participants how they would feel if (mostly) common research practices were applied to their data: p-hacking/cherry-picking results, selective reporting of studies, Hypothesizing After Results are Known (HARKing), committing fraud, conducting direct replications, sharing data, sharing methods, and open access publishing. An overwhelming majority of psychology research participants think questionable research practices (e.g. p-hacking, HARKing) are unacceptable (68.3–81.3%), and were supportive of practices to increase transparency and replicability (71.4–80.1%). A surprising number of participants expressed positive or neutral views toward scientific fraud (18.7%), raising concerns about data quality. We grapple with this concern and interpret our results in light of the limitations of our study. Despite the ambiguity in our results, we argue that there is evidence (from our study and others’) that researchers may be violating participants’ expectations and should be transparent with participants about how their data will be used.



What does Open Science mean for disciplines where pen and paper are still the main working methods? | Impact of Social Sciences

Open Science and its wider application to the social sciences and humanities, is predicated on the idea that research can be reproduced and shared across digital platforms, but to what extent do researchers actually use digital tools a part of their work? Commenting on a recent study into the workflows of social scientists and humanities researchers, Deirdre Watchorn argues open science policies should adopt more nuanced approach to these different kinds of research.

Patching Science – amending the literature through version control | bioRxiv

Abstract:  The ideal of self-correction in science is not well served by the current culture and system surrounding amendments to published literature. Here we report on a survey (N = 132) that highlights academics’ dissatisfaction with the status quo and their support for an alternative approach. We then describe our view of how amendments could and should work by drawing on the idea of an author-led version control system. Here authors would include a link in their published manuscripts to an updatable website (e.g. a GitHub repository or similar) that could be disseminated in the event of any amendment. Such a system is already in place for computer code and, as such, requires nothing but buy-in from the scientific community – a community that is already evolving towards various open science frameworks. This would remove a number of frictions that discourage amendments thus leading to an improved scientific literature and a healthier academic climate.

Share an Adoption – eCampusOntario Open Library Portal

“Please fill out the following form if you have adopted an OER (open educational resource) from either eCampusOntario’s Open Library or another collection. You have the opportunity to share as much or as little information as you wish. While eCampusOntario is keen to report students’ savings, we are also looking to connect successful OER adopters with educators considering the option….”