Open science (OS) is currently dominated by a small subset of practices that occur late in the scientific process. Early career researchers (ECRs) will play a key role in transitioning the scientific community to more widespread use of OS from pre-registration to publication, but they also face unique challenges in adopting these practices. Here, we discuss these challenges across the OS life cycle. Our essay relies on the published literature, an informal survey of 32 ECRs from 14 countries, and discussions among members of the Global Working Group on Open Science (Global Young Academy and National Young Academies). We break the OS life cycle into four stages—study design and tracking (pre-registration, open processes), data collection (citizen science, open hardware, open software, open data), publication (open access publishing, open peer review, open data), and outreach (open educational resources, citizen science)—and map potential barriers at each stage.
The most frequently discussed barriers across the OS life cycle were a lack of awareness and training, prohibitively high time commitments, and restrictions and/or a lack of incentives by supervisors. We found that OS practices are highly fragmented and that awareness is particularly low for OS practices that occur during the study design and tracking stage, possibly creating ‘path-dependencies’ that reduce the likelihood of OS practices at later stages. We note that, because ECRs face unique barriers to adopting OS, there is a need for specifically targeted policies such as mandatory training at the graduate level and promotion incentives.
Objectives: To identify the engagement of health sciences librarians (HSLs) in open science (OS) through the delivery of library services, support, and programs for researchers.
Methods: We performed a scoping review guided by Arksey and O’Malley’s framework and Joanna Briggs’ Manual for Scoping Reviews. Our search methods consisted of searching five bibliographic databases (MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, LISTA, and Web of Science Core Collection), reference harvesting, and targeted website and journal searching. To determine study eligibility, we applied predetermined inclusion and exclusion criteria and reached consensus when there was disagreement. We extracted data in duplicate and performed qualitative analysis to map key themes.
Results: We included fifty-four studies. Research methods included descriptive or narrative approaches (76%); surveys, questionnaires, and interviews (15%); or mixed methods (9%). We labeled studies with one or more of FOSTER’s six OS themes: open access (54%), open data (43%), open science (24%), open education (6%), open source (6%), and citizen science (6%). Key drivers in OS were scientific integrity and transparency, openness as a guiding principle in research, and funder mandates making research publicly accessible.
Conclusions: HSLs play key roles in advancing OS worldwide. Formal studies are needed to assess the impact of HSLs’ engagement in OS. HSLs should promote adoption of OS within their research communities and develop strategic plans aligned with institutional partners. HSLs can promote OS by adopting more rigorous and transparent research practices of their own. Future research should examine HSLs’ engagement in OS through social justice and equity perspectives.