DSpace & EPrints Help Authors Provide Access During Publisher OA Embargoes

DSpace follows (not quite “leads“!) EPrints in providing access (not quite “Open Access”!) to research during publisher OA embargo periods (via the facilitated Request-Copy Button):


Just in time, I hope, to help shape the implementation of the US Public Access Policy by ensuring that mandatory deposit is (1) immediate (not waiting to deposit only after the allowable OA embargoes of publishers have elapsed) and (2) institutional (not institution-external).

Institutions can then (a) monitor and ensure compliance with the US Public Access Policy and (b) implement the institutional repository’s facilitated Request-Copy Button which allows the author to provide an individual copy to an individual requestor with a single click on a case by case basis during the publisher’s OA embargo period.

(Both metadata and full-texts of institutional deposits can then be automatically exported to or harvested by any central repositories desired: disciplinary, national, or even funder-based.)

Interview with Advisory Board member Peter Suber

“When junior faculty feel pressure to publish in prestigious journals, we can help them find prestigious OA journals, which are growing in number. When they feel pressure to publish in prestigious non-OA journals, then we can help them make their work OA through repositories. And of course, we should do what we can to remove any pressures to put prestige ahead of quality, that is, pressures which prove that we are not yet evaluating their work fairly….”

@rchiveSIC :: [sic_00965272, version 1] Open access et SHS: controverses

Abstract [from Google’s English]:  After recalling the genesis and live news Open Access to scientific publications, this article attempts to discuss the pressing under the specificities of research in the humanities and social sciences political order. Noting that public policies are developed mainly by characteristics borrowed from biomedical sciences, technology or nature, the author attempts to discuss the relevance of advanced assumptions, including the barrier of access to knowledge, issues innovation and growth, the return on public investment, the issue of open data and data mining. The contribution highlights the risks of an unmeasured for editing humanities and social sciences and outline possible scenarios according to public policies decided digital transformation.

Shuttleworth Gathering Budapest, Content Mine Dogfood

Twice a year the Shuttleworth Fellowship meets in a Gathering – could be anywhere in the world (subject to a minimum travel costs algorithm). This is my first and we are in Budapest – one of Europe’s loveliest cities. (I’ve been here before, luckily, as our programme has been very full and we only got out once formally for a river cruise.

It’s Chatham House Rule so no details but see our web page for the 13 fellows. This is one of the most coherent, inspiring, groups I have ever been in. So much is common ground – we agree on doing Open, the questions are why? what and how? and we’ve explored those. I’ve found so much in common – we are in the area of liberating knowledge and inspiring innovation , mixed with democracy and justice. I’m finding out about how to build communities, annotation, education while being able to help with computer vision, information extraction, metadata, etc.

We each ran a 75 minute slot on “eating our own dogfood”. NOT a lecture. We had to bring the practice of our project and ask the others – everyone – to grok it and hack it. Often this was in small groups and so for mine we had 5 groups of 5. Here’s my rough summary with comments:

  • Why are we doing ContentMining? economics, openness/democracy, innovations, disruption.  Hargreaves

Very useful discussion (as would be expected)

  • Manual markup (highlighters) of two articles

Worked very well. Lots of questions about “should we mark this?”. 

  • Demo (PMR) of semantic content  (chemistry)

  • Crawling exercise (manual)

Good involvement. “Why doesn’t publisher X have an RSS feed?”, etc.

  • Scraping exercise (manual and software)

Again worked very well

  • Extraction (software and manual design)

Mainly concentrated on manual markup but showed chemical tagger, etc.

  • Where are we going?


I deliberately put far too much in – so people could test the software worked, etc. But the main idea was to see how non-biologists managed. I chose a paper on evolutionary biology of Lions in Africa and everyone got the point. In fact it reinforced how needlessly exclusive scientific language is. The first part of the introduction could be rewritten without loss to read something like

“African Lions are dying out because of hunting and environment change. DNA analyses show that lions in different parts of Africa have evolved in different ways. By studying the DNA and historical specimens we can understand the evolution and perhaps use this for conservation.”

There wasn’t enough time for everyone to run the software – deliberately – but we got very useful feedback.  I shall be tweaking it over the weekend to make sure it’s working for our Vienna workshop.


Progressive vs Treadwater Fields

There are many reasons why grumbling about attempts to replicate are unlikely in the physical or even the biological sciences, but the main reason is that in most other sciences research is cumulative:

Experimental and observational findings that are worth knowing are those on which further experiments and observations can be built, for an ever fuller and deeper causal understanding of the system under study, whether the solar system or the digestive system. If the finding is erroneous, the attempts to build on it collapse. Cumulative replication is built into the trajectory of research itself ? for those findings that are worth knowing.

In contrast, if no one bothers to build anything on it, chances are that a finding was not worth knowing (and so it matters little whether it would replicate or not, if tested again).

Why is it otherwise in many areas of Psychology? Why do the outcomes of so many one-shot, hit-and-run studies keep being reported in textbooks?

Because so much of Psychology is not cumulative explanatory research at all. It is helter-skelter statistical outcomes that manage to do two things: (1) meet a crierion for statistical significance (i.e., a low probability that they occurred by chance) and (2) are amenable to an attention-catching interpretation.

No wonder that their authors grumble when replicators spoil the illusion.

Yes, open access, open commentary and crowd-sourcing are needed in all fields, for many reasons, but for one reason more in hit-and-run fields.

Why I joined the Authors Alliance | DSPS Press

“Of all the absurdities associated with the Authors Guild suit against Google over the Google Books Project, perhaps the greatest was the Guild’s efforts to make it a class action, with the 8,000 members of the Guild speaking for all authors everywhere in the world.  Most academic authors realize that providing a keyword index to all published literature can only aid scholarship.  At the same time, by making it easier to identify works that might be of interest, Google Books can only increase readership and sales of the original works.  Yet at the time of the lawsuit, there was no organization that could speak for authors motivated by concerns that were not solely commercial. Now there is.  On 21 May, the Authors Alliance was formally launched in San Francisco….

OpenCon 2014 Announcement


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                     Contact:           Ranit Schmelzer
May 28, 2014                                                                                                                     +1 202 538 1065

Broad Coalition Announces Student and Early Career Researcher Conference on Open Access, Open Education and Open Data
OpenCon 2014 to Take Place November 15-17 in Washington, DC

WASHINGTON, DC — Today 11 organizations representing the next generation of scholars and researchers announced OpenCon 2014: the Student and Early Career Researcher Conference on Open Access, Open Education and Open Data. Slated for November 15-17 in Washington, DC, the event will bring together students and early career researchers from across the world to learn about the issues, develop critical skills, and return home ready to catalyze action toward a more open system for sharing the world’s information — from scholarly and scientific research, to educational materials, to digital data.

“From Nigeria to Norway, the next generation is beginning to take ownership of the system of scholarly communication which they will inherit,” said Nick Shockey, founding Director of the Right to Research Coalition. “OpenCon 2014 will support and accelerate this rapidly growing movement of students and early career researchers advocating for openness in research literature, education, and data.”

The first event of its kind, OpenCon 2014 builds on the success of the Berlin 11 Satellite Conference for Students and Early Stage Researchers, which brought together more than 70 participants from 35 countries to engage on Open Access to scientific and scholarly research. The interest, energy, and passion from the student and researcher participants and the Open Access movement leaders who attended made a clear case for expanding the event in size and duration, and to broaden the scope to related areas of the Openness movement.

“To be successful, our community must put the next generation at the core of what we do to promote openness in research outputs,” said Heather Joseph, Executive Director of SPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition). “We are eager to partner with others in the community to support and catalyze student and early career researcher involvement across the Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data movements through the OpenCon meeting.”

OpenCon 2014’s three day program will begin with two days of conference-style keynotes, panels, and interactive workshops, drawing both on the expertise of leaders in the Open Access, Open Education and Open Data movements and the experience of participants who have already led successful projects. The third day will take advantage of the Washington DC location by providing a half-day of advocacy training followed by the opportunity for in-person meetings with relevant policymakers, ranging from members of the U.S. Congress to representatives from national embassies and key NGOs. Participants will leave with a deeper understanding of the conference’s three issue areas, stronger skills in organizing local and national projects, and connections with policymakers and prominent leaders across the three issue areas.

“Open Access to educational materials and the results of research is critically important to medical students’ ability to get a research-based education and to put that education into practice after graduation,” said Joško Miše, President of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations.  “Around the world, our members have led efforts on these topics, from changing policy at the institutional and national levels to country-wide awareness raising efforts.”

OpenCon 2014 is organized by the Right to Research CoalitionSPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), and a committee of student and early career researcher organizations from around the world. A variety of sponsorship opportunities are available and will be critical to ensuring that dedicated students and early career researchers across the globe are able to attend. For more information, see www.opencon2014.org.

The event will take place back to back with the 2014 Open Education Conference, a large international meeting that will convene leaders from the Open Education movement in Washington, DC on November 19-21.

Applications for OpenCon 2014 will open in August. For more information about the conference and to sign up for updates, visit www.opencon2014.org


The Right to Research Coalition is an international alliance of graduate and undergraduate student organizations, which collectively represent nearly 7 million students in over 100 countries around the world, that advocate for and educate students about open methods of scholarly publishing.  The Right to Research Coalition is supported by SPARC.

SPARC®, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, is an international alliance of academic and research libraries working to correct imbalances in the scholarly publishing system.  Developed by the Association of Research Libraries, SPARC has become a catalyst for change.  Its pragmatic focus is to stimulate the emergence of new scholarly communication models that expand the dissemination of scholarly research and reduce financial pressures on libraries.  More information can be found at www.arl.org/sparc and on Twitter @SPARC_NA.

Contacts for organizing committee members 

The American Medical Student Association
Britani Kessler, President
pres [at] amsa [dot] org

Asia-Pacific Alliance of Postgraduate Student Associations
Jianzhen Liu, Director of International Liaison
Jaysonzliu [at] gmail [dot] com
Siyang Xu, Convener of General Assembly
Caymanhsu [at] gmail [dot] com

The European Council of Doctoral Candidates and Junior Researchers
John Peacock, President
president [at] eurodoc [dot] net 

The European Federation of Psychology Student Associations
Mariyan Vasev, President
president [at] efpsa [dot] org 

The International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations
Ivana Di Salvo, Liaison Officer to Research and Medical Associations
lorma [at] ifmsa [dot] org

Max Planck PhDnet
Prateek Mahalwar, Biology and Medicine section representative
prateek.mahalwar [at] tuebingen.mpg.de 

The Medical Students’ Association of Kenya
Daniel Mutonga, Past President
danielmutonga [at] gmail [dot] com 

Felicia Yeung, Director of Branch Affairs
branches [at] medsin [dot] org 

The National Association of Graduate-Professional Students
Neleen Leslie, President
president [at] nagps [dot] org 

The Open Access Button
Joseph McArthur, Co-lead
joseph.mcarthur.10 [at] gmail [dot] com 

The Student Public Interest Research Groups
Nick Jermer, NJPIRG Board Chairman
nickjermer [at] gmail [dot] com

High Time To Start Getting Serious About Open Access

Video interview of Stevan Harnad by Maciej Chojnowski (CeON, University of Warsaw) prior to Invited Keynote on “How to Formulate Effective Policies to Open Access to Research Worldwide”. Conference on Opening Science to Meet Future Challenges. Centre for Open Science, part of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Mathematical and Computational Modelling at the University of Warsaw, 11 March 2014

OpenCon 2014


HomeAnnouncement | Sponsorship Opportunities

OpenCon 2014 is the student and early career researcher conference on Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data and will be held on November 15-17, 2014 in Washington, DC.

The meeting will convene students and early career researchers from around the world and serve as a powerful catalyst for projects led by the next generation of scholars and researchers to advance OpenCon’s three focus areas. Participants for the conference will be selected through an application process which will open in August.  Full and partial travel scholarships will be available to cover the cost of attendance for qualified participants.

We understand that many students and early career researchers, even those at well-funded institutions, simply do not have access to travel funding for a meeting such as this. We hope to partner with organizations and institutions that understand the benefits of empowering the next generation to change the way research outputs are shared and seek to play a leadership role in facilitating positive change.

Click here to learn more about sponsorship opportunities.

A limited number of registration spaces will be available to librarians, faculty, publishers, and other professionals who are interested in working with students and early career researchers and wish to attend the meeting.

Please fill in the form below to receive updates on OpenCon 2014 and to be notified with applications open in August.

Book Review: Sally Morris, et al. The Handbook of Journal Publishing

In the preface to The Handbook of Journal Publishing, the authors state one goal and make one prediction for the book: that it will serve as a useful resource for those who “have come to journals publishing after a spell with books, or are completely new to publishing,” and that it may be best used as a reference book, rather than read from cover to cover (xi). Still a bit of a newbie to the journal publishing industry myself—having worked on academic journals for more than three years, but only from within the confines of an Open Access, library-based publisher—I tackled this book with these aims in mind.

Book Review: Michael Bhaskar. The Content Machine: Towards a Theory of Publishing from the Printing Press to the Digital Network

“Above all,” argues Michael Bhaskar, “creating the New Publisher and meeting the digital challenge is not a business problem but a conceptual one” (ch. 6). As this claim and as the book’s subtitle suggest, The Content Machine ambitiously sets out to offer a kind of prolegomenon to a “theory of publishing” and to offer some hints about what to expect from the publisher of the future. As someone very much in the middle of university press practice, I’m initially excited by and skeptical about the ambition here. After all, publishing is a fairly old, complicated activity, which is notoriously idiosyncratic and context-bound, with a history of immunity to tidy explanations. A theory of publishing seems ever prone to over-simplicity (and alignment with a certain set of circumstances) or over-complication (and generalization to the point of little practical use). In other words, I was set up to be hard on this book. The Content Machine surprises me, however, in its sophisticated approach to what most interested readers would agree is an exceptionally daunting task. The book is detail-rich but capacious in its selection of examples and its synthesis of what the author argues are the essential elements tying together publishing circumstances that many might consider discrete or incompatible.

Book Review: Brad Stone. The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

With The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon, technology journalist Brad Stone set out to write the “seminal” book about Amazon. Although Bezos did not consent to being interviewed for the book, he approved interviews with other Amazon executives, as well as friends and family, making The Everything Store the first book about Amazon to have the authorization of its subject. The result, based on 300 interviews, as well as Stone’s fifteen years of reporting for Newsweek, the New York Times, and Businessweek, is a deftly crafted biography of both Amazon, the company, and Jeff Bezos, the man. Much of Amazon’s (and Bezos’s) story has been told before, either in the business press or in a few books about Bezos and Amazon’s early years: Robert Spector’s Amazon.com: Get Big Fast (2000); James Marcus’s Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.com Juggernaut (2004); or in Mark Liebovich’s The New Materialists (2000). But no significant book about Amazon has been published in ten years, which makes Stone’s book all the more welcome. He not only takes the story forward but he enriches what is known with new details and testimony, weaving together an immense amount of material into a readable, compelling account of a complex, dynamic company and its driven founder.