Author gender bias in paediatric journals and FOAM – Round – – The Clinical Teacher – Wiley Online Library

Not even an abstract is OA. 

Excerpt: “Free Open Access Meducation (FOAM) is a novel and expanding method of communicating best practice and research findings. FOAM refers to blogs, podcasts, websites, applications and other freely available resources used for medical education. Given its accessibility for potential authors, removal of funding needs and independence from large institutions, FOAM may be less subject to gender bias than traditional publishing methods. We, as a group of medical students who frequently use FOAM, collaborated with two paediatricians who develop FOAM resources, in order to assess and discuss the extent of gender bias in paediatric FOAM. Our team is actively working towards gender equality in medicine, most notably through Dr Knight’s work as co-founder of Women Speakers in Healthcare and founder of

To our knowledge, there is no previously published work investigating gender bias within FOAM. FOAM’s novel nature provides a unique opportunity to recognise, assess and tackle potential gender bias before FOAM becomes more institutionalised. To this end, we conducted a study collecting data on author gender within paediatric peer-reviewed and FOAM sources….”

Gender equity in free open access medical education – Roland – – The Clinical Teacher – Wiley Online Library

Not even an abstract is OA.

Excerpt: “We would argue that comparing peer-reviewed journal publications with FOAM is not a like-for-like comparison as, for the former, the number of males or females submitting articles is not known. This is relevant as in FOAM the authorship comes from a generally fixed pool of contributors and one of the FOAM websites cited (Pediatric EM Morsels) has a single male author. A potential alternative method could have looked at paediatric FOAM sites with more than two authors, for example this would have included the analysis of three platforms with 59% (DFTB), 56% (Pediatric EM), and 50% (Paediatric FOAM) female authors….”

New collection of open access final projects on gender studies | UOC Library

“The UOC’s O2 institutional repository has released a new collection of final projects on gender studies-related topics. It consists of 18 works from different fields of study at the University, including bachelor’s and master’s degree final projects involving the study of women, men, feminism and LGTBIQ issues. The collection will be regularly expanded.

This initiative forms part of the UOC’s 2020-2024 Equality Plan and has the goal of making the knowledge created around gender issues at the University available to the entire community and anyone else who may be interested. This will help foster and raise the profile of gender equality in research and knowledge transfer content….”

Dudley | The Changing Landscape of Open Access Publishing: Can Open Access Publishing Make the Scholarly World More Equitable and Productive? | Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication

Abstract:  Almost 50% of scholarly articles are now open access in some form. This greatly benefits scholars at most institutions and is especially helpful to independent scholars and those without access to libraries. It also furthers the long-standing idea of knowledge as a public good. The changing dynamics of open access (OA) threaten this positive development by solidifying the pay-to-publish OA model which further marginalizes peripheral scholars and incentivizes the development of  sub-standard and predatory journals. Causal loop diagrams (CLDs) are used to illustrate these interactions.


Review of: Reassembling Scholarly Communications: Histories, Infrastructures, and Global Politics of Open Access

“In the nearly 20 years since the publication of the three declarations on open access (OA) (Bethesda, Budapest, and Berlin), many digital and economic developments have altered the landscape of open scholarly publishing. Reassembling Scholarly Communications: Histories, Infrastructures, and Global Politics of Open Access, a 25-chapter collection edited by Martin Paul Eve and Jonathan Gray, explores questions raised by these changes with a focus on how the intersection of technologies and traditions surrounding publishing and OA are informed by the past and may project into the future.

The book is divided into six parts: colonial influences; epistemologies; publics and politics; archives and preservation; infrastructures and platforms; and global communities. The editors have chosen well in assembling dozens of scholars and practitioners from both the Global South and Global North in this useful volume aimed at those who study and practice OA scholarship. Each of the chapters succeeds in advancing the conversation regarding either the historical dimensions or future directions of a particular facet of open scholarship. The collection seeks to provide a range of perspectives across current research and inform practice but is not introductory and those new to the conversation may do well to first read an overview of OA scholarly communication.1

As with many developments in digital technology, the earliest rhetoric around digital, OA scholarship was largely, even overly, optimistic. Many of the assumptions underpinning OA disruption posited inevitably greater freedom and openness in scholarly communication.

The volume opens with four chapters that complicate this narrative and offer a deeply insightful critique of the promise of OA scholarship, specifically as it relates to post-colonial societies. In Chapter 1, the author draws from Jacques Derrida’s scholarship on Plato’s Pharmacy to explore the ways that OA implementation can be a sort of pharmakon (“poison remedy”) by fostering healthy scholarly flourishing in some regions while acting to noxious effect in the African context. The theme of OA systems and the perpetuation of inequality are expanded upon in the second chapter while the final two chapters of the first section, drawing from current best practices, offer suggestions for a more just and inclusive future….” 

How to build a more inclusive SSH scholarly landscape | F1000Research

“There are several layers that need to be unpacked. The scholarly communication landscape in the SSH is very diverse,  which is not in itself a bad thing, but more communication and coordination between different institutions and stakeholders is needed. Moreover, the open science policies vary across Europe and there’s no consensus among researchers on how important and prestigious open access is. Similarly, digital innovations are adopted to a varying extent by different disciplines and individual scholars, with some curious and eager to experiment with different forms and others sticking to safer, more traditional solutions (interestingly, it often has nothing to do with the career stage!). 

The evaluation criteria have not caught up with the digital transformation and so many authors end up publishing via more traditional outputs even though they would rather experiment with the former as they know that they need to have the established publications  – for example articles in prestigious journals – on their academic resume.

There is another issue linked to evaluation: often publications in English are recognised as more valuable by funders or institutions which is not the best situation, especially in the case of domestic authors addressing important local issues in their native language.

There are several layers to a successful research infrastructure in the SSH. Firstly -and this really is key -it needs to be inclusive, so open to different stakeholders representing diverse perspectives.

Secondly, the infrastructure has to be dedicated to the specific traits of SSH: for example, research outputs often tend to be more traditional than in the case of hard sciences (‘the monograph is the king,’ claimed one of our interviewees in the OPERAS-P project) and there is often less funding for opening up research. Multilingualism is also an important aspect of the SSH as it is crucial that a topic that is important to smaller, local communities can be presented to them in a way that they can understand.

Thirdly, it needs to be researcher-driven, thus reflecting the actual needs of the scholars and be developed with the collaborators from various academic circles….”

SocArXiv Papers | Dynamics of Cumulative Advantage and Threats to Equity in Open Science – A Scoping Review

Open Science holds the promise to make scientific endeavours more inclusive, participatory, understandable, accessible, and re-usable for large audiences. However, making processes open will not per se drive wide re-use or participation unless also accompanied by the capacity (in terms of knowledge, skills, financial resources, technological readiness and motivation) to do so. These capacities vary considerably across regions, institutions and demographics. Those advantaged by such factors will remain potentially privileged, putting Open Science’s agenda of inclusivity at risk of propagating conditions of “cumulative advantage”. With this paper, we systematically scope existing research addressing the question: “What evidence and discourse exists in the literature about the ways in which dynamics and structures of inequality could persist or be exacerbated in the transition to Open Science, across disciplines, regions and demographics?” Aiming to synthesise findings, identify gaps in the literature, and inform future research and policy, our results identify threats to equity associated with all aspects of Open Science, including Open Access, Open/FAIR Data, Open Methods, Open Evaluation, Citizen Science, as well as its interfaces with society, industry and policy. Key threats include: stratifications of publishing due to the exclusionary nature of the author-pays model of Open Access; potential widening of the digital divide due to the infrastructure-dependent, highly situated nature of open data practices; risks of diminishing qualitative methodologies as “reproducibility” becomes synonymous with quality; new risks of bias and exclusion in means of transparent evaluation; and crucial asymmetries in the Open Science relationships with industry and the public, which privileges the former and fails to fully include the latter.

Guest Post – Trends, Challenges, and Needs of Research in the Global South: Learnings as Research4Life Turns 20 – The Scholarly Kitchen

Access to research knowledge is essential for developing new research and for informed policy decisions. But access to knowledge is not equal around the world; researchers in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are significantly disadvantaged by access challenges. This was the burning problem that Research4Life was set up to address, 20 years ago this year as the print to electronic migration was just gaining speed. Launched as Hinari by the World Health Organization (WHO) with 1500 journals from six major publishers, it now offers users up to 132,000 resources from 180 international partners. But partnering with publishers to facilitate access is not enough in itself; the resources have to be used effectively in a way that is relevant to users’ research, implementation and beyond. This is why, every five years Research4Life commissions in-depth reviews of its work to understand how the work of the partnership is experienced from the users’ as well as the partners’ perspectives – looking at its infrastructure, external context or landscape, and user experience. Together, the reviews serve as a solid evidence base for future evolution as Research4Life plans its strategy for the next five years. Our most recent set of evaluations were conducted in 2020-2021.

Catalyzing the Creation of a Repository Network in the US – COAR

“COAR and SPARC have a shared vision of creating a global, open knowledge sharing system that centers diversity, equity, and inclusion, and we believe repositories play a central role in achieving this vision.

This is an important moment in time, in which open scholarship is more visible and widely-embraced than ever before. The urgency of addressing the COVID-19 pandemic has led many researchers to eagerly embrace new, faster ways of sharing their research papers, data, and more via repositories and other open platforms. There is a renewed interest in community ownership of both infrastructure and content, and a spotlight on empowering author’s rights retention due to new funder requirements, such as Plan S. There is also a growing recognition of the pressing need to intentionally build channels for greater inclusiveness and diversity of voices in the research communication system, as underscored in the UNESCO draft recommendations which were developed through consensus by over 100 member countries.

Yet, against this backdrop of encouraging developments, the trend toward commercial concentration in the publishing industry continues unabated. This consolidation exacerbates a number of serious problems in the system, including unacceptably high and ever-increasing costs for subscriptions and APCs (article processing charges). It also contributes to a steady decline in the diversity of publishing outlets and options – decreasing bibliodiversity, which is fundamental for a healthy ecosystem.

Individual repositories and a global repository network are critical infrastructure that provide the community with means for resisting this consolidation. Repositories are localized and can respond to different users’ needs, advancing equity and diversity in the scholarly communications ecosystem. When they are resourced properly, they are sustainable and long-lived, and because they are mostly managed by research institutions and their libraries, they are operated in a manner consistent with the academic community’s values. Moreover, repositories exemplify the key role institutions must play in preserving, curating, and making accessible content that would otherwise be unavailable to the world….”

Video Recording + Slides: LIBER 2021 Session #4: Open Access: a Case for Diversity and Inclusion

Presenter Slides are Available at:



In the first presentation, Henk van den Hoogen and Timon Oefelein present the results of a unique collaborative Open Science initiative by the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU), Springer Nature and several academic libraries in the Netherlands. This presentation provides background to the initiative, its rationale, objectives, and interdisciplinary make up, as well as summarising its key results and those from two large global researcher surveys to do with researchers’ motivations towards SDG research and usage trends of both OA and non-OA content. The presentation will be of interest to academic support librarians supporting researchers with publication and impact, as well as data librarians interested in innovative new SDG mapping technology, and bibliometric and members of the research assessment community interested in new ways of defining and capturing the societal impact of research.

Next, Jos Westerbeke will give a lightning talk about Federated Identity Management (FIM4L), one of LIBER’s Working Groups. In hist talk, they will provide insights and recommendations into authentication practices (single sign-on) for licensed materials and differing privacy issues. He will also discuss what to do when publishers delay implementing privacy enhancing changes and how the Working Group can help with setting up the right configuration for federated SSO access according to a broadly supported uniform library SSO method conforming to FIM4L principles.

Finally, Elisa Herrmann, Stefanie Paß, and Jana Rumler will provide insights from the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, a small integrated research museum within the Leibniz Association. In their presentation, they will discuss the future activities for the implementation and promotion of Open Access in their institution, which include an in-house publication fund, the development of Green Open Access infrastructures, and the handling of OA publications in the acquisition process. As a smaller institution themselves, they will also pose the question of how big the gap is in the implementation of Open Access between large and small libraries. They will then identify possibilities to narrow the gap and, in the best case, create structures that will help smaller libraries to promote Open Access and Open Science in their institutions.



ARL Joins Coalition for Diversity & Inclusion in Scholarly Communications – Association of Research Libraries

“The Association of Research Libraries (ARL), representing 125 member organizations in Canada and the United States, has joined the Coalition for Diversity and Inclusion in Scholarly Communications (C4DISC). ARL members are trusted sources of scholarly information and data, and constitute a significant share of the academic publishing market. A growing number of research libraries run their own publishing programs, house or partner with university presses, and collaborate with emerging scholar-led presses. The Association is proud to join publishing colleagues in C4DISC as part of a commitment to better understand the causes of, and to advance remedies for, racial inequity in scholarly communication. In joining, ARL endorses the C4DSIC Joint Statement of Principles.”

Openness and Diversity in Journal Editorial Boards

Abstract:  This study aims to measure diversity in scholarly journals’ editorial board structure and characterize patterns of editorial diversity across types of journals. To accomplish these aims, we integrate multiple sources of data at the journal and editor level to assemble a novel database describing the composition of editors and editorial boards for more than six thousand journals internationally, characterized by discipline, commercial publishing model, and research transparency. We then apply name-based gender imputation, geo-entity extraction analysis, and standardized dispersion measures to evaluate each group’s diversity. This analysis reveals that editorial leadership is more homogenous than editorial boards, and that diversity across both boards and leadership varies substantially (and robustly) across disciplines. Open-access journal’s boards exhibit less gender diversity and more international diversity than their closed-access counterparts. These results also suggest that open access, open science, and diversity, and equity, and inclusion are not strongly correlated and thus require separate measurements.

Reimagining Wikidata from the margins | document/manifesto | June-October 2021

“Wikidata’s ecosystem has been rapidly growing over the last nine years …[but] we’re still missing Global South and other marginalized communities from the North – both in data and in contributors….

Reimagining Wikidata from the margins is a process that precedes WikidataCon 2021 and that potentially will continue after the conference in October. This is an invitation to communities and individuals from underrepresented groups (plus good allies!) so we can better understand and envision possible ways for our meaningful and empowered agency in the broad Wikidata ecosystem!


Awaken the debate within a diverse range of communities from Global South and other marginalized communities
Foment bonds between communities in similar contexts
Identify specific and general problems/challenges/needs/expectations from those communities regarding Wikidata
Elaborate collaboratively a strategy for decentering Wikidata from its current focus on North America and Europe
Consolidate a document/manifesto
Integrate to the conference program this decentering perspectives and the Global South voice…

How will it work?…After the rounds of conversations, we will gather a group of volunteers who participated in them to draft a document, summarizing the discussions and looking for possible ways to further integrate data and volunteers from marginalized communities on Wikidata. The document will be released during WikidataCon 2021, in the hope that it will be an initial step towards effectively decentering Wikidata and lifting up underrepresented voices….


June/July: First round of discussions with local communities
August: Round of thematic meetings with people from different locations
September: A volunteer committee engaged on previous discussions gather for writing a document/manifesto
October: Final review of the document and launching at WikidataCon 2021…”