Neue Studie vom OA-Monitor: 15 Jahre Open Access Entwicklung (New study from the OA Monitor: 15 years of Open Access development) | BMBF Digitale Zukunft

Open Access – i.e. the free, digital publishing of scientific literature – has increased significantly worldwide and also in Germany since the beginnings of the Open Access (OA) movement in 2003. How has publishing behaviour changed in Germany? The recently published study by the BMBF-funded project “Synergies for Open Access” provides an overview of developments from 2005 to 2019.

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Open Access – also das freie, digitale Publizieren wissenschaftlicher Literatur – hat weltweit und auch in Deutschland deutlich zugenommen seit den Anfängen der Open Access (OA)-Bewegung in 2003. Wie hat sich das Publikationsverhalten in Deutschland verändert? Die jüngst veröffentlichte Studie des BMBF-geförderten Projektes „Synergien für Open Access“ gibt einen Überblick über die Entwicklungen der Jahre 2005 bis 2019.

Revisiting – The Google Generation Is Alright – The Scholarly Kitchen

“Lettie Conrad: Turning a retrospective eye on the last dozen years’ fear and loathing about the “Google Generation,” I am impressed by early calls for the digital transformation of academic publishing and predictions about how technological disruptions would usher in lasting changes to users’ experiences of all ages and areas of study. When we revisit these posts, such as this 2009 commentary from Ann Michael following sessions on the topic at SSP’s Annual Meeting that year, we can see the ground on which publishers and our partners have been building more service-oriented programs and data-driven digital products. 

Evidence of changing researcher practices and scholarly communications, from studies like those from the CIBER research team, are now being integrated into user-driven publishing strategies. And, looking back, we can see that many of these changes are not specific to the younger set, but in fact, Google (and other disruptors) have wrought lasting changes on the information experiences of all of us. For those at the forefront of such product development and cultural change, progress can sometimes feel slow and painful. It can help to look back and remember how far we’ve come….”

|| Advancing Open Science in transport research: the BE OPEN project draws to a close | UITP ||

To support the implementation of Open Science in the transport domain, the EU-project BE OPEN was launched in January 2019. Coordinated by Greek research institute CERTH, the project included 17 partners from across Europe. In BE OPEN UITP’s role was key in ensuring that the public transport and practitioners’ perspective was well integrated in the project and its deliverables.

Has Covid-19 changed researcher behaviour? | News | Wellcome

“On 31 January 2020, Wellcome published a statement calling on researchers, journals and funders to ‘share interim and final research data relating to the outbreak… as rapidly and widely as possible’.   

This statement has now been signed by more than 150 organisations including publishers, scientific institutions and preprint repositories.  

Signing a statement is one thing, acting on it something else. Has the research community done enough to share their data openly and transparently? And will these commitments lead to a collaborative and transparent research culture? …”

Austria: Rapid progress on clinical trial reporting

“Led by Europe’s largest academic trial sponsor, Austrian universities are now making their clinical trial results public at an impressive pace. In parallel, national medicines regulator BASG is intensifying its efforts to promote clinical trial transparency.

Overall, Austria’s 14 largest sponsors have made 37% of their due trial results public, compared to just 18% a year ago. Results are still missing for 233 long-completed trials.

Over the past year, the country’s three major medical universities alone have uploaded 65 trial results onto the European trial registry….”

Advancing Open Access in the Netherlands after 2020: from quantity to quality | Zenodo

Abstract:  The purpose of this article is to explore options to further open access in the Netherlands from 2021. Its premise is that there is a need to look at qualitative aspects of open access, alongside quantitative ones. The paper first takes stock of progress that has been made. Next, we suggest to broaden the agenda by involving more types of actors and involve other scholarly formats (like books, chapters, proceedings, preprints and textbooks). At the same time we suggest to deepen the open access agenda by including several open access characteristics: immediacy, open licenses, open metadata, open peer review and diamond open access. To facilitate discussion,a framework is proposed that allows specifying these actions by the a) aspects of open access they address (what is made open access, how/when/where it is made open access, and copyright and rights retention), b) the actors that play a role (government, research institutions, funders), and c) the various levels at which these actions can be taken: state as goal, set as policy, legalize and promote, recognize and reward, finance, support with infrastructure. A template is provided to ease the use of the framework.

A live version of this spreadsheet with the framework described in this article is available at https://tinyurl.com/dutchoapolicies

 

Baromètre français de la Science Ouverte 2020

From Google’s English: “According to the 2020 edition of the Open Science Barometer (BSO), 56% of the 156,000 French scientific publications published in 2019 are available opened in December 2020. The rate observed in December 2019, relating to publications produced in 2018, was only 49%. The rate therefore increased by 7 points in one year. From one discipline to another, the proportion of open access varies greatly, from 75% for publications in Mathematics to 40% in Engineering Sciences. In addition, scientific publications published in 2018 or in previous years have an open rate increasing over time. In particular, those published in 2018 are now 54% open (+5 points compared to December 2019), and the increase, which concerns all disciplines, is greater in those less open….”

EDP Sciences – The National Open Access Agreement in France judged “a real success” as key targets are surpassed

“The partners involved in the “Accord national open access en France” (National Open Access Agreement in France) are pleased to announce that the agreement is exceeding their expectations when judged against key targets. The Ministère de l’Enseignement Supérieur, de la Recherche et de l’Innovation (the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation – MESRI), the Couperin consortium, the Agence bibliographique de l’enseignement supérieur (Abes) and EDP Sciences are delighted with the results so far and agree that the excellent relationship between the partners has been a significant aspect of this success.

The Accord national was established in January 2017 and its success is being judged in the following areas:

Number of members and opt-in rate
Processes and support given to corresponding authors
Reporting and data
Volume of open access content…”

EDP Sciences – The National Open Access Agreement in France judged “a real success” as key targets are surpassed

“The partners involved in the “Accord national open access en France” (National Open Access Agreement in France) are pleased to announce that the agreement is exceeding their expectations when judged against key targets. The Ministère de l’Enseignement Supérieur, de la Recherche et de l’Innovation (the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation – MESRI), the Couperin consortium, the Agence bibliographique de l’enseignement supérieur (Abes) and EDP Sciences are delighted with the results so far and agree that the excellent relationship between the partners has been a significant aspect of this success.

The Accord national was established in January 2017 and its success is being judged in the following areas:

Number of members and opt-in rate
Processes and support given to corresponding authors
Reporting and data
Volume of open access content…”

How the world is adapting to preprints

“A certain trend emerged from the preprint discussions. Praise for preprints and their virtues was reliably bracketed by an acknowledgement that the medium was a bit green and a bit untamed: the Wild West of scientific publishing, where anything can happen.

Similar analogies from the publishing community have been abundant. At a talk organized by the Society for Scholarly Publishing, Shirley Decker-Lucke, Content Director at SSRN, likened preprints to raw oysters: They’re generally safe, but sometimes you get a bad one. On the same panel, Lyle Ostrow, Assistant Professor of Neurology at Johns Hopkins, compared the adoption of preprints to the shift from horse-drawn buggies to automobiles: They’re faster, they’re better, but they will require education to use safely. The following week, a Scholarly Kitchen article about preprints drew a parallel with unruly teenagers: “tremendous promise, but in need of more adult supervision to achieve their potential”….

As it is, most preprint servers have not been agnostic about the papers they post. Generally, they restrict passage of content that is clearly unscientific, unethical, potentially harmful or not representative of a novel, empirically derived finding. That is, they already impose some editorial standards.

Preprint platforms offer authors a legitimate place to host their work with unprecedented speed, for free. In time, they could be in a position to enforce, or at least strongly incentivize, standards that are widely acknowledged to support research integrity, like data and code availability, details of randomization and blinding, study limitations and lay summaries for findings that are consequential to human health….”

How the world is adapting to preprints

“A certain trend emerged from the preprint discussions. Praise for preprints and their virtues was reliably bracketed by an acknowledgement that the medium was a bit green and a bit untamed: the Wild West of scientific publishing, where anything can happen.

Similar analogies from the publishing community have been abundant. At a talk organized by the Society for Scholarly Publishing, Shirley Decker-Lucke, Content Director at SSRN, likened preprints to raw oysters: They’re generally safe, but sometimes you get a bad one. On the same panel, Lyle Ostrow, Assistant Professor of Neurology at Johns Hopkins, compared the adoption of preprints to the shift from horse-drawn buggies to automobiles: They’re faster, they’re better, but they will require education to use safely. The following week, a Scholarly Kitchen article about preprints drew a parallel with unruly teenagers: “tremendous promise, but in need of more adult supervision to achieve their potential”….

As it is, most preprint servers have not been agnostic about the papers they post. Generally, they restrict passage of content that is clearly unscientific, unethical, potentially harmful or not representative of a novel, empirically derived finding. That is, they already impose some editorial standards.

Preprint platforms offer authors a legitimate place to host their work with unprecedented speed, for free. In time, they could be in a position to enforce, or at least strongly incentivize, standards that are widely acknowledged to support research integrity, like data and code availability, details of randomization and blinding, study limitations and lay summaries for findings that are consequential to human health….”

PLAN S and other progress for Open Access to knowledge

Abstract:  The principle of Open Access (OA) is about the breaking of any paywall to the knowledge coming from research funded by public monies. After twenty years of statements not much has changed and the market of scientific journals is still in the hands of oligopolistic companies. Plan S is a disruptive initiative created by research funders in Europe and US which aims to foster the transition to Open Access by acting against hybrid journals and citation index. The Italian Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) has signed Plan S and, in close relationship with the Universities, the Conference of Rectors (CRUI), and the National Research Council (CNR), is outreaching the academic communities to discuss strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.  In this work both a description of Plan S and a brief status report of other initiatives are given.

 

Rigor and Transparency Index, a new metric of quality for assessing biological and medical science methods | bioRxiv

Abstract:  The reproducibility crisis in science is a multifaceted problem involving practices and incentives, both in the laboratory and in publication. Fortunately, some of the root causes are known and can be addressed by scientists and authors alike. After careful consideration of the available literature, the National Institutes of Health identified several key problems with the way that scientists conduct and report their research and introduced guidelines to improve the rigor and reproducibility of pre-clinical studies. Many journals have implemented policies addressing these same criteria. We currently have, however, no comprehensive data on how these guidelines are impacting the reporting of research. Using SciScore, an automated tool developed to review the methods sections of manuscripts for the presence of criteria associated with the NIH and other reporting guidelines, e.g., ARRIVE, RRIDs, we have analyzed ~1.6 million PubMed Central papers to determine the degree to which articles were addressing these criteria. The tool scores each paper on a ten point scale identifying sentences that are associated with compliance with criteria associated with increased rigor (5 pts) and those associated with key resource identification and authentication (5 pts). From these data, we have built the Rigor and Transparency Index, which is the average score for analyzed papers in a particular journal. Our analyses show that the average score over all journals has increased since 1997, but remains below five, indicating that less than half of the rigor and reproducibility criteria are routinely addressed by authors. To analyze the data further, we examined the prevalence of individual criteria across the literature, e.g., the reporting of a subject’s sex (21-37% of studies between 1997 and 2019), the inclusion of sample size calculations (2-10%), whether the study addressed blinding (3-9%), or the identifiability of key biological resources such as antibodies (11-43%), transgenic organisms (14-22%), and cell lines (33-39%). The greatest increase in prevalence for rigor criteria was seen in the use of randomization of subjects (10-30%), while software tool identifiability improved the most among key resource types (42-87%). We further analyzed individual journals over time that had implemented specific author guidelines covering rigor criteria, and found that in some journals, they had a big impact, whereas in others they did not. We speculate that unless they are enforced, author guidelines alone do little to improve the number of criteria addressed by authors. Our Rigor and Transparency Index did not correlate with the impact factors of journals.

 

 

The changing role of funders in responsible research assessment: progress, obstacles and the way ahead

“This working paper explores what RRA [Responsible Research Assessment] is, and where it comes from, by outlining fifteen initiatives that have influenced the shape and direction of current RRA debates. It goes on to describe the responses that these have elicited, with a particular focus on the role and contribution of research funders, who have more freedom and agency to experiment and initiate change than other actors in research systems.

The paper also presents the findings of a survey of RRA policies and practices in the participant organisations of the Global Research Council (GRC)—mainly national public funding agencies—with responses from 55 organisations worldwide….”