Simba Information: Scientific & Technical Publishing Grew During Pandemic

“The report Global Scientific & Technical Publishing 2021-2025 found that total sales increased 0.4% to $10.5 billion in 2020. However, currency exchange fluctuations deflated growth. Simba Information estimates growth without the currency impact at 2.8%.

“The findings stand in stark contrast to forecasts of doom and gloom related to COVID-19’s impact and the move to open access,” said Dan Strempel, senior analyst of professional publishing at Simba Information. “Print books continue to fall, but that spending is migrating to e-books and other types of online content, databases and tools. Research spending and output, in terms of journal articles, both continued to grow.”

The number of articles published with funding from 33 key research organizations tracked by Simba Information grew 10.7% to 525,042 articles in 2020, according to information in the Crossref database.

The National Natural Science Foundation of China is the leading funder, backing 268,588 articles in 2020—a 9.2% increase from 245,966 in 2019. The U.S. National Institutes of Health is the No. 2 funder of articles with 71,951 in 2020, an 8% increase. The European Commission has a strong hold on the No. 3 position in the index, growing the number of articles funded by 18.6% as the Plan S open access mandate builds momentum. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and Japan’s Science and Technology Agency both showed growth in articles funded in excess of 20% in 2020.

There have been more reports of university libraries canceling their journal subscription packages in 2020 and 2021, but most are still subscribing to individual journals based on usage/importance to the researchers and faculty. As individual institutions choose to purchase subscriptions a la carte, their total spend with the large commercial publishers is reduced, but the market leaders are replacing it with the growth of revenue from open access fees. Others are signing transformative agreements, which support the growth of open access.

Pure open access publishers MDPI, PLOS and eLife were also found to be publishing significant numbers of articles backed by the world largest research funding bodies. The European Commission funded 6,304 articles published by MDPI, 13.3% of all articles funded by the EC in 2020. MDPI also has a strong link to the National Research Foundation of Korea, which funded 2,829 articles published by MDPI in 2020 — 12.3% of all the articles funded by the foundation. PLOS and eLife are strongly linked to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, publishing 1,125 and 944 articles respectively in 2020 that were financially backed by that agency….”

IOP Publishing and Songshan Lake Materials Laboratory launch open access journal – Materials Futures | Mirage News

IOP Publishing and the Songshan Lake Materials Laboratory (SLAB), in affiliation with the Institute of Physics, Chinese Academy of Science, are launching a new open access journal covering all areas of basic and applied materials science and technology.

The Stuart Cary Welch Islamic and South Asian Photograph Collection | Harvard Library

“The Fine Arts Library holds the noted curator’s research slides, documenting four decades of unparalleled access to public and private art collections from around the world….

The Fine Arts Library is currently in the process of digitizing, color-correcting, and cataloging this important collection, which is made available open access as it is completed. View the images currently cataloged. …”

How open access can support Humanities book authors: Interview with Manuel Peréz García | For Researchers | Springer Nature

“Prof. Manuel Peréz García is a tenured Associate Professor at the Department of History, School of Humanities at Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China. He has published two open access books within the Palgrave Macmillan book series Palgrave Studies in Comparative Global History, for which he is editor-in-chief, called Global History and New Polycentric Approaches and Global History with Chinese Characteristics. In this interview, he talks about why open access is important not only for research in global history but also for society, authors and funders….”

China ‘pursuing national open science strategy’ | Research Information

“China is working on a master plan for the internationalisation of its domestic journals and plans to pursue an open science strategy at a national level.

That was one of the main messages of a session at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Society of Scholarly Publishing (SSP) held last week, and hosted by Cactus Communications (Cactus), a technology company accelerating scientific advancement….

During an interview with Christine Hu, general manager of Greater China for Cactus, Dr. Lyu stated: ‘China has always focused on the global progress of Open Science and has actively participated in it. The Excellence Action Plan, led by CAST, has an OA (open access) ratio of 81 per cent for new journals, which shows that Chinese STM journals are becoming an important force in the open access landscape….”

Global Trends in Open Access: Themes from Africa, Asia and Latin America – The Scholarly Kitchen %

“The opportunity for researchers to share their findings and draw on the research findings of others is vital for researchers, policymakers and wider society. But all too often, the way that this process works is decided by relatively small numbers of countries and people –- often those based in the global North, in “elite” institutions or in large, commercial publishers.

Important voices can be missed and, as a result, important learning about what people have found already works around the world is not reflected in academia, policy decisions, and practice. 

In a recent Scholarly Kitchen webinar, I was delighted to be joined by great speakers from three continents, who are all experts in open access with different perspectives. This post summarizes some of the key themes discussed by Arianna Becerril García, who is based in Mexico, Thomas Hervé Mboa Nkoudou, who is based in Cameroon, and Vrushali Dandawate, who is in India….”

Open access information resources and university libraries: Analysis of perceived awareness, challenges, and opportunities – ScienceDirect

Abstract:  This study assesses the perceived level of Open Access (OA) awareness, challenges, and opportunities in context of university libraries of Pakistan. The differences between public and private sector university libraries in terms of their awareness, challenges and opportunities were also analyzed in this study. Survey research design, based on a structured questionnaire, was employed to meet the objectives of the study. The population of the study was libraries of Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC) recognized universities located in Punjab and Islamabad (Pakistan). The findings revealed that majority of university libraries were fully aware of HEC-National Digital Library (NDL) OA resources, OA journals, and Pakistan Research Repository, whereas, somewhat aware of Budapest OA Initiative, and Diamond OA Model. Lack of additional resources (staff, time, efforts), unreliability of OA information resources, and inadequate tools and infrastructure were identified as top challenges. However, free access, increase in library value, and fulfilling users need with shrinking budget were top three identified opportunities. The study did not find any significant statistically difference between public and private university libraries in terms of their level of awareness, perceived challenges and opportunities. This study is administered in institutional context and fills the literature gap.

 

Indonesia should stop pushing its academics to chase empty indicators – Nikkei Asia

“An assessment system that predominantly evaluates research performance based on journal output and citations is steering academics from developing countries like mine to chasing quantity over quality. And being exploited while doing so.

Researchers in Indonesia are the second most likely in the world to publish in dubious journals that print articles for a fee without proper scientific peer review, a process where several experts in the field review the merit of the research, according to a new study by economists Vit Machacek and Martin Srholec.

 

These predatory journals prey on academics whose career progressions, and therefore salary increase, are determined by credit points. They exploit the processing fees that authors pay to make articles open to the public. They pocket the payment, an average of $178, an amount close to the basic salary of an entry-level lecturer in a state university in Indonesia, without facilitating proper peer review. The papers published by predatory journals are often low-quality, with typographical and grammatical errors….

In addition to the predatory journal problem, the metric also discourages science collaboration. As the metric values article count, academics who want to turn out several journal articles from a data set has an incentive to hold on to them rather than sharing them for other scientists to analyze….”

Open Access Publishing in Asian Studies | Michigan Publishing

“The Open Access Publishing in Asian Studies event highlights the impact of the Michigan Asian Studies Open Access Books Collection. While the event focuses on University of Michigan publications, the panels aim to explore opportunities for open access publishing in Asian studies more broadly….”

Open Access in Indonesia – Irawan – – Development and Change – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  Despite the absence of funding pressures that explicitly mandate a shift to open access (OA), Indonesia is a leader in OA publishing. Indonesia subscribes to a non?profit model of OA, which differs from that promoted by Plan S. The penetration of bibliometric systems of academic performance assessment is pushing Indonesian scholars away from a local non?profit model of OA to a model based on high publication charges. This article considers whether Plan S promotes or undermines the ability of Indonesian scholars to develop systems of OA adapted to local resource constraints and research needs.

 

Open Access in Indonesia – Irawan – – Development and Change – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  Despite the absence of funding pressures that explicitly mandate a shift to open access (OA), Indonesia is a leader in OA publishing. Indonesia subscribes to a non?profit model of OA, which differs from that promoted by Plan S. The penetration of bibliometric systems of academic performance assessment is pushing Indonesian scholars away from a local non?profit model of OA to a model based on high publication charges. This article considers whether Plan S promotes or undermines the ability of Indonesian scholars to develop systems of OA adapted to local resource constraints and research needs.

 

Transparent scientific reporting is imperative during the pandemic: Pathogens and Global Health: Vol 0, No 0

Abstract:  The coronavirus pandemic has exposed not only the lack of preparation to combat the deadly disease, but also the nature of response by governments worldwide. This article analyses how some governments suppress science reporting in the Asia Pacific region during the pandemic. It also highlights how the political interference in science undermines liability and openness leading to the lack of freedom to express facts honestly.

 

Full article: Open Access Initiatives in Western Asia

Abstract:  This paper highlights open access activities and resources from Western Asia. The development of open access journals from this region is analyzed through regional listings in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), and information about the development and implementation of open access repositories is taken from the Directory of Open Access Repositories (OpenDOAR) platform. Additional information about OA resources and development projects was found through UNESCO’s Global Open Access Portal. The study’s findings show that, even with support from international groups like EIFL and OpenAIRE, the region’s open access market lags behind that of more developed countries. Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) stand out among Western Asian states, and Cyprus took the important step of instituting a national public open access policy. Awareness projects and workshops will be a vital step in helping the countries of Western Asia to see the value of open access and to build a stronger OA infrastructure.

 

Launch of the East Asia Digital Library?National Diet Library

“The East Asia Digital Library (EADL), a portal site for cultural and scientific resources in East Asian languages, was launched on December 17, 2020. Configuration and operation of the EADL is being performed by the National Library of Korea (NLK) with the cooperation of the National Diet Library (NDL). The EADL is unique in that it allows integrated searches of historical materials in the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages held by either the NLK or the NDL. Both libraries have provided metadata for roughly 4,000 historical materials, and at present some 8,000 items are available in digital form. In addition to simple keyword searches, users can perform advanced searches by title, creator, or subject matter. Additional items will be added as they become available. In addition to viewing digitized images of most materials by clicking a link to the digital platform of the host library, users can also enjoy browsing an online exhibition entitled the East Asia Digital Library Collection, which can be displayed chronologically or by subject matter. Additionally, metadata for EADL content is available via an EADL API service, which allows users convenient access to data for easy use in other systems or applications.”