2015 awards recipients of The Geological Society of America

Among this year’s gold medalists was Brandon Schmandt. From the citation: “Brandon Schmandt, University of New Mexico, earned the Young Scientist Award (Donath Medal) and cash prize of US$10,000 for outstanding achievement. Schmandt integrates seismology and geology to understand mantle dynamics and continental evolution. Nominator Karl Karlstrom cites “demonstrated technical innovations, keen intellectual curiosity, drive and energy to produce at the highest levels, dedication to the new ethic of open access of data, and a gift for cross disciplinary collaboration and public outreach, all with a sense of humility,” as the qualities that embody this outstanding young scientist.”

Scholarly Communications and Digital Publishing Strategist

“The Scholarly Communications and Digital Publishing Strategist [at the University of Cincinnati] develops, coordinates, and oversees the growth of scholarly communications and publishing programs and services at UC, including: providing outreach, knowledge and support to faculty, students, and staff about copyright, licensing, and scholarly publishing, and about the dissemination and preservation of the scholarly, historical, and cultural record. The position will also participate in the development of university policies regarding access to scholarly work, including copyright and intellectual property issues, fair use, authors’ rights, privacy rights, open access, and other information policy issues within the libraries and university. Additionally, the position will collaborate with the Office of General Counsel in order to make specific information available to foster creative solutions and to develop best practices….”

Yuri Milner and Stephen Hawking Announce $100 Million Breakthrough Initiative to Dramatically Accelerate Search for Intelligent Life in the Universe

“Yuri Milner was joined at The Royal Society today by Stephen Hawking, Martin Rees, Frank Drake, Geoff Marcy, Pete Worden and Ann Druyan to announce the unprecedented $100 million global Breakthrough Initiatives to reinvigorate the search for life in the universe. The first of two initiatives announced today, Breakthrough Listen, will be the most powerful, comprehensive and intensive scientific search ever undertaken for signs of intelligent life beyond Earth. The second, Breakthrough Message, will fund an international competition to generate messages representing humanity and planet Earth, which might one day be sent to other civilizations….The program will generate vast amounts of data. All data will be open to the public. This will likely constitute the largest amount of scientific data ever made available to the public. The Breakthrough Listen team will use and develop the most powerful software for sifting and searching this flood of data. All software will be open source. Both the software and the hardware used in the Breakthrough Listen project will be compatible with other telescopes around the world, so that they could join the search for intelligent life. As well as using the Breakthrough Listen software, scientists and members of the public will be able to add to it, developing their own applications to analyze the data….”

IFLA response to the Financing for Development “Addis Ababa Action Agenda”

“Specifically, we commend the United Nations for recommending a platform that will provide open access to research: “The online platform will facilitate access to information, knowledge and experience, as well as best practices and lessons learned, on science, technology and innovation facilitation initiatives and policies. The online platform will also facilitate the dissemination of relevant open access scientific publications generated worldwide.” …”

JULIET – Now lists funding groups

With an increasing number of funding agencies working together to provide open access to their research, we have now added details about these groups to JULIET.

These groups will now be searchable in their own right, and will provide a list of the participating agencies. Each agency will continue to have its own policy entry, so users can search for the group and then select their specific agency. Or they can search for the agencies by name if known.

For example here is the REF group of funders [http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/juliet/index.php?fPersistentID=1060]

We currently have lists for:

– REF
– Research Councils UK

– Charity Open Access Fund

– Europe PubMed Central Funders

We will add new groups as and when they are needed.

JULIET – Now lists funding groups

With an increasing number of funding agencies working together to provide open access to their research, we have now added details about these groups to JULIET.

These groups will now be searchable in their own right, and will provide a list of the participating agencies. Each agency will continue to have its own policy entry, so users can search for the group and then select their specific agency. Or they can search for the agencies by name if known.

For example here is the REF group of funders [http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/juliet/index.php?fPersistentID=1060]

We currently have lists for:

– REF
– Research Councils UK

– Charity Open Access Fund

– Europe PubMed Central Funders

We will add new groups as and when they are needed.

VACANCY Publication Specialist | News Service

“The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) indexes more than 10000 open access journals covering all areas of science, technology, medicine, social science and humanities. It is a white list of open access journals and aims to be the starting point for all information searches for quality, peer reviewed, open access material. Publishers must apply for their journal(s) to be indexed in DOAJ and each application is reviewed manually by the editorial team. We receive approximately 80 new applications every week.

DOAJ is now seeking a freelance Publication Specialist to assist the editorial team with reviewing new applications and reapplications. The role requires knowledge of academic publishing, in particular: online journals, editorial process, best practices and publishing technology standards….”

Open Source Drug Discovery

“Open Source Drug Discovery (OSDD) is a CSIR led team India Consortium with global partnership with a vision to provide affordable healthcare to the developing world by providing a global platform where the best minds can collaborate & collectively endeavor to solve the complex problems associated with discovering novel therapies for neglected tropical diseases like Tuberculosis, Malaria, Leishmaniasis etc.

The success of Open Source models in Information Technology (For e.g., Web Technology, The Linux Operating System) and Biotechnology (For e.g., Human Genome Sequencing) sectors highlights the urgent need to initiate a similar model in healthcare, i.e., an Open Source model for Drug Discovery. OSDD is currently focused on the discovery of novel drugs for TB and Malaria. OSDD collaboratively aggregates the biological, genetic and chemical information available to scientists in order to use it to hasten the discovery of drugs. This will provide a unique opportunity for scientists, doctors, technocrats, students and others with diverse expertise to work for a common cause. 

OSDD is a translational platform for drug discovery, bringing together informaticians, wet lab scientists, contract research organizations, clinicians, hospitals and others who are willing to adhere to the affordable healthcare philosophy agreeing to the OSDD license….”

University Faculty Awareness and Attitudes towards Open Access Publishing and the Institutional Repository: A Case Study

Abstract:  INTRODUCTION The purpose of this study was to understand TAMU [Texas A&M University] faculty awareness of open access (OA) publishing; assess their attitudes towards, and willingness to, contribute to an institutional repository (IR); and investigate their perceptions of newer OA trends and resources, including Open Educational Resources (OER) and DMPTool. The survey also served as an outreach tool to inform and educate TAMU faculty about OA publishing, the IR, and the Libraries’ OA services. METHODS The 34-question survey was conducted between Nov. 6–Dec 15, 2014 using Qualtrics, a web-based survey tool. Responses were anonymous, and participants were prevented from answering the survey more than once. Two hundred ninety-five faculty responded to the survey, resulting in a response rate of 11 percent. RESULTS Survey results suggest that tenured faculty are more engaged and interested in OA publishing topics in general, and tenure-track faculty are more willing to adopt new initiative such as Open Textbooks. Overall, the responding TAMU faculty are willing to consider publishing in OA publications, and almost half of them believe OA journal publications are acceptable for consideration of tenure and promotion in their departments. Despite their positive attitudes towards OA publishing, they are not so positive towards OA mandates. The survey also revealed there is a low awareness level of the TAMU IR, as well as of newer OA trends and resources. CONCLUSION The majority of responding TAMU faculty are aware of OA journals in their fields, and indicated their willingness to publish in an OA publication. Being unaware of the IR deposit process stood out as the greatest barrier that accounts for the low IR participation rate at TAMU. In line with previous studies, copyright concerns, as well as the perception of IR contents as being of lower quality, are the second most significant barriers. Workshops or seminars on copyright, data management, and the IR are badly needed. Several participants appreciated this survey because it provided many web links to the resources mentioned for them to explore further, and as a result they learned a lot from the survey. Despite our best efforts to make faculty aware of the abundance of resources made available by the Libraries, it seems that our audience continues to remain unaware of some of our services and resources. This only reinforces the need for continuous communication—after all, there is no such thing as too many reminders.

Peter Suber, US citizens: Tell your Senators to support FASTR. Things are moving in DC, and…

“Things are moving in DC, and we anticipate that FASTR (Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act) will come before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs later this month.

FASTR is the strongest bill ever introduced in Congress requiring open access to federally-funded research. 

Yes, we already have the NIH policy. But it only covers one agency. And yes, we already have the February 2013 Obama directive requiring about two dozen federal agencies to adopt OA mandates. But the next President could rescind that directive. FASTR would subsume and extend the NIH policy. FASTR would solidify the Obama directive by grounding these agency policies in legislation. Moreover, FASTR would strengthen the NIH policy and Obama directive by requiring reuse rights or open licensing. It has bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate….”

Open Access Assistant job

“Do you work with Open Access (OA), research publications and research repositories? Are you looking for a temporary library job? We need a Research Publications Assistant with good current knowledge of Open Access and the Research Exercise Framework (REF) to work in a university library in South London  You will support the Research Publications Librarian in ensuring that the university meets its obligations towards HEFCE & RCUK in making its research outputs available on Open Access .You will be responsible for ensuring consistency and reliability of bibliographic and other metadata. You will liaise with SGUL researchers to request publications in order to complete repository records, and with publishers and others to ensure that copyright terms and conditions are observed and that funder requirements are met….”

“New & Innovative Ways to Fundraise”: An Interview with Autism Speaks | Coin Cafe Blog

“We have a big project right now that we call our MSSNG Project. It’s focused on discovering the future in autism through what we call “open science”. We’re partnering with Google, as well as the SickKids Hospital in Toronto, to hold genome sequencing for over ten thousand individuals, both individuals with autism and family members without autism. We hope to understand what is going on from a genetic level, so that we can understand the various forms of autism better, as well as develop personalized treatments. We couldn’t be doing a project like this without the support of Google. They will actually host all of this genetic information on the Google Cloud, and any qualified researcher anywhere in the world will have access to this database. With other databases like this, one research institution holds it, and researchers can’t really get to that information if they’re in another part of the country or not affiliated with that institution. Our database is open science – anybody, through the power of Google Cloud, will be able to access this database. We hope to get the best and brightest minds working on autism, helping us find more of the causes and potential treatments….”