Open Access: Koste es, was es wolle?

Abstract:  The paper introduces the recommendations of German Science and Humanities Council on the transformation of academic publishing towards Open Access, pinpointing core aspects. The key points will illustrate why, 20 years on, these recommendations are indicative of a lack of genuine transformation, and may explain why change has not happened despite the manifold efforts made by libraries. The article also outlines promising aspects that nonetheless may require a long-term view most of the parties involved might not be ready to take.

Research Report: How well did copyright laws serve libraries during COVID-19? – IFLA

“83% of responding library professionals said they had copyright-related challenges providing materials during pandemic-related facility closures. These intersected with ongoing challenges predating the pandemic, including budget pressures, external financial crises, difficult negotiations with publishers, and demand for eBooks that outpaces publisher offerings.

While many publishers offered expanded access to services and content during the early months of the pandemic, these offers usually did not last for sufficient time for libraries to meaningfully integrate them into teaching and research activities. 69% of respondents who had challenges said they included issues providing access to textbooks, and 52% of libraries that had copyright challenges indicated challenges with providing access internationally, as students and faculty returned to their home countries. To access content digitally, some libraries made use of programs such as the HathiTrust’s Emergency Temporary Access project and ‘Resource-Sharing during COVID’ (RSCVD)….”

Usability and Accessibility of Publicly Available Patient Sa… : Journal of Patient Safety

Abstract:  Objectives 

The aims of the study were to identify publicly available patient safety report databases and to determine whether these databases support safety analyst and data scientist use to identify patterns and trends.


An Internet search was conducted to identify publicly available patient safety databases that contained patient safety reports. Each database was analyzed to identify features that enable patient safety analyst and data scientist use of these databases.


Seven databases (6 hosted by federal agencies, 1 hosted by a nonprofit organization) containing more than 28.3 million safety reports were identified. Some, but not all, databases contained features to support patient safety analyst use: 57.1% provided the ability to sort/compare/filter data, 42.9% provided data visualization, and 85.7% enabled free-text search. None of the databases provided regular updates or monitoring and only one database suggested solutions to patient safety reports. Analysis of features to support data scientist use showed that only 42.9% provided an application programing interface, most (85.7%) provided batch downloading, all provided documentation about the database, and 71.4% provided a data dictionary. All databases provided open access. Only 28.6% provided a data diagram.


Patient safety databases should be improved to support patient safety analyst use by, at a minimum, allowing for data to be sorted/compared/filtered, providing data visualization, and enabling free-text search. Databases should also enable data scientist use by, at a minimum, providing an application programing interface, batch downloading, and a data dictionary.

How research is being transformed by open data and AI | Popular Science

“How iNaturalist can correctly recognize (most of the time, at least) different living organisms is thanks to a machine-learning model that works off of data collected by its original app, which first debuted in 2008 and is simply called iNaturalist. Its goal is to help people connect to the richly animated natural world around them. 

The iNaturalist platform, which boasts around 2 million users, is a mashup of social networking and citizen science where people can observe, document, share, discuss, learn more about nature, and create data for science and conservation. Outside of taking photos, the iNaturalist app has extended capabilities compared to the gamified Seek. It has a news tab, local wildlife guides, and organizations can also use the platform to host data collection “projects” that focus on certain areas or certain species of interest. 

When new users join iNaturalist, they’re prompted to check a box that allows them to share their data with scientists (although you can still join if you don’t check the box). Images and information about their location that users agree to share are tagged with a creative commons license, otherwise, it’s held under an all-rights reserved license. About 70 percent of the app’s data on the platform is classified as creative commons. “You can think of iNaturalist as this big open data pipe that just goes out there into the scientific community and is used by scientists in many ways that we’re totally surprised by,” says Scott Loarie, co-director of iNaturalist. …

But with an ever-growing amount of data, our ability to wrangle these numbers and stats manually becomes virtually impossible. “You would only be able to handle these quantities of data using very advanced computing techniques. This is part of the scientific world we live in today,” Durant adds….

Another problem that researchers have to consider is maintaining the quality of big datasets, which can impinge on the effectiveness of analytics tools. This is where the peer-review process plays an important role….”


Archives, Access and Artificial Intelligence bei Transcript Publishing

“Digital archives are transforming the Humanities and the Sciences. Digitized collections of newspapers and books have pushed scholars to develop new, data-rich methods. Born-digital archives are now better preserved and managed thanks to the development of open-access and commercial software. Digital Humanities have moved from the fringe to the center of academia. Yet, the path from the appraisal of records to their analysis is far from smooth. This book explores crossovers between various disciplines to improve the discoverability, accessibility, and use of born-digital archives and other cultural assets….


Seiten 7 – 28

Chapter 1: Artificial Intelligence and Discovering the Digitized Photoarchive
Seiten 29 – 60

Chapter 2: Web Archives and the Problem of Access: Prototyping a Researcher Dashboard for the UK Government Web Archive
Seiten 61 – 82

Chapter 3: Design Thinking, UX and Born-digital Archives: Solving the Problem of Dark Archives Closed to Users
Seiten 83 – 108

Chapter 4: Towards Critically Addressable Data for Digital Library User Studies
Seiten 109 – 130

Chapter 5: Reviewing the Reviewers: Training Neural Networks to Read Peer Review Reports
Seiten 131 – 156

Chapter 6: Supervised and Unsupervised: Approaches to Machine Learning for Textual Entities
Seiten 157 – 178

Chapter 7: Inviting AI into the Archives: The Reception of Handwritten Recognition Technology into Historical Manuscript Transcription
Seiten 179 – 204

AFTERWORD: Towards a new Discipline of Computational Archival Science (CAS)
Seiten 205 – 218 …

[From the Introduction:]

The closure of libraries, archives and museums due to the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the urgent need to make archives and cultural heritage materials accessible in digital form. Yet too many born-digital and digitized collections remain closed to researchers and other users due to privacy concerns, copyright and other issues. Born-digital archives are rarely accessible to users. For example, the archival emails of the writer Will Self at the British Library are not listed on the Finding Aid describing the collection, and they are not available to users either onsite or offsite. At a time when emails have largely replaced letters, this severely limits the amount of content openly accessible in archival collections. Even when digital data is publicly available (as in the case of web archives), users often need to physically travel to repositories to consult web pages. In the case of digitized collections, copyright can also be a major obstacle to access. For instance, copyrightprotected texts are not available for download from HathiTrust, a not-for-profit collaborative of academic and research libraries preserving 17+ million digitized items (including around 61% not in the public domain)….

It is important to recognize that “dark” archives contain vast amounts of data essential to scholars – including email corres

Sharing is caring: Ethical implications of transparent research in psychology. – PsycNET

Abstract:  The call for greater openness in research data is quickly growing in many scientific fields. Psychology as a field, however, still falls short in this regard. Research is vulnerable to human error, inaccurate interpretation, and reporting of study results, and decisions during the research process being biased toward favorable results. Despite the obligation to share data for verification and the importance of this practice for protecting against human error, many psychologists do not fulfill their ethical responsibility of sharing their research data. This has implications for the accurate and ethical dissemination of specific research findings and the scientific development of the field more broadly. Open science practices provide promising approaches to address the ethical issues of inaccurate reporting and false-positive results in psychological research literature that hinder scientific growth and ultimately violate several relevant ethical principles and standards from the American Psychological Association’s (APA’s) Ethical Principles of Psychologists Code of Conduct (APA, 2017). Still, current incentive structures in the field for publishing and professional advancement appear to induce hesitancy in applying these practices. With each of these considerations in mind, recommendations on how psychologists can ethically proceed through open science practices and incentive restructuring—in particular, data management, data and code sharing, study preregistration, and registered reports—are provided.

Commercialization challenges open science | European Journal of Public Health | Oxford Academic

“Open science is increasingly important not just within the research community, but also among decision-makers and citizens, the society at large. Recently, the UNESCO adopted a Recommendation on Open Science (2021),1 highlighting principles including open and equal access to research publications, data and methods. The recommendation further emphasizes that open science infrastructures ‘should be not-for-profit and guarantee permanent and unrestricted access to all public’ as well as function ‘in the global and public interest and without market dominance on the part of any commercial entity’. Open science is a positive trend fostering scientific development and extending equal access to knowledge and its production at all levels from individuals to the global scene.

Unfortunately, negative trends, too, have hit the scientific community, putting restrictions on open science. Public health research offers a case underlining the importance of promoting and safeguarding the principles of open science and combatting their violations….

The GHQ provides a good example of commercialization. The measure was adopted in the early 1970s and ever since it has been a major one in population studies on mental health and screening people with mental problems for treatment. However, a British commercial firm, Mapi Research Trust has acquired all rights for the GHQ and all users, be they academic, commercial or healthcare professionals, are equally subject to charges. Users need to register and buy a license. Additionally, a user fee is due, currently approximately 1 euro per each study participant. The firm does not announce details of the costs. The GHQ measure, managed by the Mapi Research Trust, contains literally the same questions as Goldberg’s original one from 1972.3 Thus, the private firm has not participated in the development of the instrument in any way. Its role is solely limited to marketing and collecting fees, which can amount to high sums. For example, if a study with 10?000 participants includes three commercialized measures repeated three times, its costs for using the measures only may rise up to 100?000 euros….”

Is Canada ready for open access? — University Affairs

“Canadian science could benefit enormously if all research articles in the country were made freely available to anyone immediately upon publication. But there are significant barriers that need to be overcome to achieve this.

Last year, 30 per cent of Canadian research was published as paid open access (OA). That’s slightly below the global average of 34 per cent but trailing many other high research output countries such as Sweden (54 per cent), Netherlands (50 per cent) and the United Kingdom (48 per cent), according to the database. As one of the top-quality research output countries in the world, according to Nature Index, Canada should be doing better. In our opinion, the fundamental reasons for the slow uptake of open access in Canada are (1) the lack of coordinated funding to support OA publishing, and (2) barriers that researchers face to publish in OA.

The Tri-Councils’ OA policy stipulates that any publications coming from research should be freely accessible within 12 months of publication. However, there is low compliance with this request. Researchers are expected to pay for open access via article publishing charges (APCs). As noted in the “Open Science Dialogues,” organized by the Office of the Chief Science Advisor (OCSA) to gain feedback on their Roadmap for Open Science, researchers are expected to pay these APCs from their research grants. Unfortunately, the APCs commanded by the high impact factor journals can represent an unfeasibly large percentage of the researchers’ total grant. APCs of US$5,000 to $10,000 are not uncommon for the prestige journals published by the large commercial publishers. But even the more moderate APCs of US$1,000 to $3,000 of lesser journals and those of not-for-profit publishers can also quickly deplete smaller research grants. For example, average NSERC grants in 2020 ranged from C$26,000 to $53,000, which leaves little room, if any, for the added expense of APCs….

The slow adoption of OA in Canada is probably not due to a lack of money per se. A back-of-the-envelope calculation of the number of Canadian articles being published as OA multiplied by the average APCs (from publisher websites), suggests that C$30-40 million was spent on OA publishing last year, 80 per cent of which was spent with the large commercial publishers….

So can Canada achieve a national OA strategy? We believe so, but to overcome the barriers we need an approach that captures the following principles:

Unity: bring together all stakeholders in the scientific research enterprise to establish a unified front and determine priorities, requirements and challenges.
Coordination: to move beyond consultation, there is a need for a coordinating body to establish a path forward, timelines, funding needs and to organize this collaborative action.
Evidence: There is an immediate need to assess data on costs, sources of funds being allocated to subscriptions and APCs, trends in OA publishing outputs, and to determine if there is sufficient existing funding to support a full switch to OA….”

Global Thinking. ON-MERRIT recommendations for maximising equity in open and responsible research | Zenodo

“Open and responsible research has the potential to profoundly alter the who, what, why, when and how of knowledge-creation. Yet it is not a destiny. The ways we implement change today will have long-lasting consequences for the kind of open and responsible research ecosystem we inhabit tomorrow. For that future to be one more equitable than today’s world, critical consideration must be given to the ways in which agendas of openness are shaped by those in positions of power and privilege, and might hence reflect or even reinforce global dynamics of inequity. 

ON-MERRIT is an EC-funded project to investigate dynamics of cumulative advantage and threats to equity in the transition to Open Research and Responsible Research & Innovation (RRI) across a range of stakeholder categories (in particular for those at the periphery) and multiple dimensions of Open Research, as well as its interfaces with industry and policy. Our results found many areas of concern, from which we identified four key areas of risk:

Resource-intensity of Open Research: Putting open and responsible research into practice requires considerable resources (including infrastructures, services, and training). The structural inequalities that exist within institutions, regions and nations, and on a global scale, create structural advantages for well-resourced actors and structural disadvantages for less-resourced actors, in terms of capacity and ability to engage in these practices.
Article-processing charges and the stratification of Open Access publishing: The article processing charge (APC)  model within Open Access publishing seems to discriminate against those with limited resources (especially those from less-resourced regions and institutions). These facts seem to be having effects of stratification in terms of who publishes where. 
Societal inclusion in research and policy-making: Open and responsible research processes take place within broader social systems where inequalities continue to structure access and privilege certain actors while others are disadvantaged. Despite laudable aims of equity, inclusion and diversity in open and responsible research, the most marginalised, vulnerable, and poor remain mostly excluded. 
Reform of reward and recognition: Institutional processes for reward and recognition not only do not sufficiently support the uptake of open and responsible research, but often get in the way of them. This disadvantages those who wish to take up these practices (putting early-career researchers especially at risk). …”

Open science, done wrong, will compound inequities

“Ten years ago, as a new PhD graduate looking for my next position, I found myself in the academic cold. Nothing says “you are an outsider” more than a paywall asking US$38 for one article. That fuelled my advocacy of open science and, ultimately, drove me to research its implementation.

Now, open science is mainstream, increasingly embedded in policies and expected in practice. But the ways in which it is being implemented can have unintended consequences, and these must not be ignored.

Since 2019, I’ve led ON-MERRIT, a project funded by the European Commission that uses a mixture of computational and qualitative methods to investigate how open science affects the research system. Many in the movement declare equity as a goal, but reality is not always on track for that. Indeed, I fear that without more critical thought, open science could become just the extension of privilege. Our recommendations for what to consider are out this week (see …

Even those rooting for equity often argue that we should first enable access and then consider unintended side effects, such as marginalization of authors from low-income countries. But how change is implemented will have long-lasting consequences. Once new forms of inequity are in place, it will be too late to fix the system efficiently….”

Little mermaid, long copyright, big absurdity – Walled Culture

“The reason the heirs were able to bring the case is because Eriksen died in 1959, and so under Danish law his work remains covered by copyright until 2029. The statue was unveiled in 1913, which means that the sculptor’s heirs are still claiming payments well over a hundred years after it was made. Copyright is supposed to be an incentive to create, but it’s absurd to claim that artists are motivated by the thought of earning money for decades after they have died….”

Case Study of Open Access practices: Limitations and Opportunities in Public Libraries in Nigeria | by Isaac Oloruntimilehin | Creative Commons: We Like to Share | Mar, 2022 | Medium

“Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC)…

Institutional Repositories…

The Nigerian Copyright Act…

Expressions of Folklore…

Nigerian Language Oral History Documentation Project…



Accelerating Open Research: A Multi-stakeholder Discussion – The Scholarly Kitchen

“As we move through a transition to a fully open research environment, there are challenges for all stakeholders in the ecosystem. Many funders have taken a leadership role in driving this transition, yet even with funder mandates in place for nearly two decades, the transition to open research globally has been slow (Larivière and Sugimoto, 2018). 

A recent study led by the Research on Research Institute (Waltman et al., 2021 ) found that commitments to open research and data sharing fell short during the pandemic and that lack of collaboration was a key factor. 

On the 10th February 2022, the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) Publisher-Funder Task Force convened a closed forum of funders, publishers, librarians and academics to discuss how collaborating among stakeholder groups may accelerate a transition to open research. The meeting was conducted under the Chatham House Rule, enabling 22 international participants to freely express opinions and ideas without fear of comments being attributed to those present. …

To this end, they discussed these questions:

Where have funder policies and mandates succeeded as tools for change? What are some of the challenges?
How might we collaborate to ensure that researchers are able to engage constructively with this transition?
How might we collaborate to ensure that we are building a truly equitable global system of open research? 
How might we collaborate to ensure a sustainable approach to accelerating the transition to open research, allowing for stakeholders to thrive amidst a culture of openness? …”

Journal editor explains ban on manuscripts from Russian institutions – Retraction Watch

“First of all, let me say, because there is some misunderstanding circulating in some social media regarding the issue you asked me for information, that the editors of the Journal of Molecular Structure did not decide to implement any sort of ban to articles submitted by Russian authors. This would be something I, or my colleagues, could never accept. Our Russian colleagues, as all our colleagues from all around the world, deserve us maximum respect.

However, it was decided by the editors of the journal to not consider manuscripts authored by scientists working at Russian Institutions, in result of the humanitarian implications emerging from the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation. This position is temporary and shall apply until the refugees (whoever they are, Ukrainians, Russians, or of any other nationality) have conditions to return to their homes, their jobs, and join their families….”

The FBI Is Hiding an Unpublished Police Use-of-Force Database From FOIA Requesters

“For the past several years, the FBI has been trying to collect information from police departments around the country on their use of force, but it has yet to publish any reports or statistics based on that data because of lackluster participation from law enforcement. Now, a civil rights group says the FBI and Justice Department are stonewalling its attempts to get the underlying reports submitted to the program.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights has been trying to obtain raw reports from law enforcement agencies submitted to the FBI’s National Use-of-Force Data Collection program. However, the FBI has rejected its Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, and the Justice Department has denied the Leadership Conference’s appeal.”