Ways societies are transitioning subscription journals to OA: Interview with Mikael Laakso

“I’d say that the majority of the work that went into the report was a literature review. We were bringing together hundreds of different articles and reports about journals converting to OA. We used that from the outset to get an initial frame for understanding how, why, and when journals have converted to OA. We then approached a sample of stakeholders that we knew had interesting insights and experiences in observing and supporting these journal flips or conversions. We tried to cover most of the key areas that play a role in shaping the larger scholarly publishing landscape, so we got someone from the commercial publishing side, the research funder side, people who have been in positions in journals, and so on….

They are definitely rethinking economic models. For example, in Finland we’ve had an interesting proposal for a consortium model for funding society journals so that the flipped journals would be covered by the consortium of libraries or universities, but so far it’s been hard to get all libraries on board even though they all subscribe to opening science and they are all unified in the struggle against commercial publishers. It’s been difficult to kind of convince them that there needs to be a shift in their cost structure for supporting smaller society journals. I know that Canada is looking to do something similar, to have a consortium for flipping journals….

I personally do not think that author facing APCs are the future. That is not an effective use of time or money, and it puts many parts of the world and people at a disadvantage if they are not grant-funded or part of an academic institution….”


Building library-based support structures for Open Science (IATUL 2018)

Research institutions meet increasing demands for transparency, accountability, added value and reuse of all aspects of scientific production, from documenting the research process to sharing underlying data to open access to publications. Going beyond admirable slogans about openness there is a clear need for support infrastructures relating to the actual practice of Open Science describing metadata, archiving datasets and publications and disseminating increasingly interdisciplinary research results. Research libraries, having always been stewards of research institutions’ collective knowledge and offering a variety of research support services, are in a unique position to offer future support for Open Science based on the core competencies already existing at the library. This paper describes the process of building a comprehensive research support structure for Open Science at the university library of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. It shows how the library identified stated, but not necessarily operationalized, university strategies for Open Access and Open Data, and proceeded to strengthen its existing competencies in this area with human resources and a targeted approach to linking the library to the central research infrastructure of the university. This resulted in the library assuming responsibility for new research support services and plans of action for Open Access and Open Data for the whole of NTNU.

Program « Munin Conference on Scholarly Publishing

The program for the 13th Munin Conference 2018 on November 28–29. 

“The Munin Conference is an annual conference on scholarly publishing and communication, primarily revolving around open access, open data and open science. This year’s conference (2018) will be the thirteenth Munin Conference and will take place on 28–29 November at the Tromsø campus of UiT The Arctic University of Norway.”

Rice: KD is undermining Plan S

[KD = Kunnskapsdepartementets = Ministry of Education and Research.]

“One criticism of Plan S is that there aren’t enough good open access journals to publish in. Traditional journals have spent years building strong reputations. The prestige researchers acquire when their work is published in these journals is massively reinforced by the career system we have built – in hiring decisions, grant awarding processes, performance reviews and so on. Open access journals are so new that they haven’t yet achieved the same level of visibility. Why should we be forced to sacrifice these benefits for a political agenda?

In Norway, we have an official registration system for research publications, a key element of which is the classification of journals as either Level 1 (intended to cover about 80% of publications by Norwegian researchers) or Level 2 (intended to cover the best 20%). Some critiques of Plan S claim that the government is speaking out of both sides of its mouth, since we have economic incentives to publish in Level 2 journals at the same time as we soon can publish only in Open Access journals, almost none of which are at Level 2….”

Utfordringer med Plan S(peed)

From Google’s English: “Plan S requires researchers to publish in Open Access (OA) from January 2020. All articles financed by the Research Council of Norway will be made publicly available. Plan S weakens the monopoly situation and the excessive power of several publishers, such as Elsevier (who had a profit of more than 9 billion NOK in 2016). Open Access is also not free. There are great profits in this market. Substantial changes in business models are required. We are open to science. But still it does not jibe it over Plan S.

Plan S puts strong guidelines on which journals researchers can publish. Researchers will not be able to publish in subscription-funded international prestige journals. We will hardly have developed internationally strong quality magazines with limited number of publications under OA. Research is global, and Plan S could create barriers between research funded by the Research Council and other researchers globally. These requirements will have an impact on international research cooperation, and for cooperation with partners who have other financiers. We therefore risk that strong international researchers wishing to publish in the traditional strong channels do not want to co-authors with Norwegian researchers.

Plan S also raises fundamental discussions about academic freedom in light of the fact that the Research Council determines where researchers can publish. …”

National goals and guidelines for open access to research articles – regjeringen.no

The government has established the following national guidelines to ensure all stakeholders work towards the same goal, including measures that shall support the ongoing work:[2]

  1. Publicly funded research articles are to be made openly available. Researchers shall examine the possibilities for publishing their articles in open access journals and choose open access journals where academically acceptable. Only in exceptional circumstances may articles that are publicly funded be published in journals that do not allow the article to be made available in an academic repository.
  2. All publicly funded research articles must be deposited in a suitable academic repository. This shall take place at the latest on the publication date, irrespective of the publishing channel and when the article can be made openly available.
  3. Institutions and consortia that negotiate agreements with publishers shall ensure that these agreements promote open access without increasing total costs, and that the terms and conditions are open and transparent.
  4. Institutions that fund research projects shall contribute to cover the costs associated with open access publishing. In research performing institutions costs associated with open access publishing shall be seen as part of research budgets, just as costs associated with other key activities. Researchers and research performing institutions are encouraged via their networks to contribute to the promotion of publishing services that deliver the required quality at an appropriate price.”

The Norwegian Approach to Open Science, Impact and Evaluation

“Thank you for inviting me to present some introductory reflections from Norway on open science and the topic of impact and evaluation. Let me first repeat the main reason behind our open science efforts: We are convinced that more openness and better circulation of knowledge is essential both to enhancing research quality and to maximizing research impact. Let me also repeat that as a small country, we cannot get very far by ourselves. We have to work together, and I appreciate this opportunity to share experiences and learn across countries. I like to see Norway as a cautious forerunner. Forerunner because we have had ambitious policies on open access for more than a decade. And we have been following up with investing in a comprehensive Current Research Information System, CRIStin, that includes all published research – including monographs and anthologies – from all disciplines and from all universities, research institutes and university hospitals. The system is also planned to be open for research performed in private industry. CRISTin is designed to harvest data automatically, so that in principle, all that is required from our individual researchers is that they confirm a readymade report …”