European copyright directive ‘opens door to mass digitalisation’ | Times Higher Education (THE)

Librarians believe that a new copyright directive passed by the European Parliament could open the door to the mass digitalisation of books, films and audio recordings, potentially meaning fewer trips to distant libraries for scholars and students who need access to obscure material….

It should make it easier for libraries to digitalise documents that are still in copyright but are not commercially available. These could include radio broadcasts, out-of-print books and unpublished oral histories, said Ben White, a member of the legal working group at the Association of European Research Libraries.

It could help to make available “huge amounts of unpublished material with a big research value”, he said.

At the moment, libraries must seek permission to digitalise these documents one by one, painstakingly tracking down the copyright owner for each, he explained, meaning that digitalisation is not possible at scale….”

Open Science in Africa | Elephant in the Lab

Open Science is becoming increasingly popular globally and provides unprecedented opportunities for scientists in Africa, South East Asia, and Latin America. African scientists face several difficulties when attempting to get their work published in peer-reviewed journals  – there is a small number of publication platforms, a lack of knowledge and access difficulties related to existing journals (whose visibility on the web is not very good) (Piron et al., 2017). There are also obstacles related to the functioning of the journals themselves ( notably the duration of the revision process and the cost of publications)  and the result is that science and scholarly publishing are often perceived as a prerogative of the Northern countries. The methods and techniques (including the peer-review process) that are being developed for its dissemination are not necessarily adapted to the contexts of other regions of the world, including Africa. Indeed, many African-based peer-reviewed scholarly journals are unable to host their content online due to resource limitations and the digital divide (Agaba et al., 2004).

In this article, we provide an overview of the most important initiatives and actors in the Open Science movement in Africa. We further identify three major challenges for Open Science on the African continent and offer perspectives for African researchers to actively contribute to the global scientific community and share knowledge to meet the challenges we all face….”

Digital Library of the Caribbean

The Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC) is a cooperative digital library for resources from and about the Caribbean and circum-Caribbean. The dLOC partner institutions are the core of dLOC. dLOC partners retain all rights to their materials and provide access to digitized versions of Caribbean cultural, historical and research materials currently held in archives, libraries, and private collections. (Information on how to become a dLOC partner).

Read the dLOC Fact Sheet (and more about dLOC), register for a free mydLOC user account, or please contact us with any questions.

dLOC also supports collaborative project development and funding initiatives for partners, including the Protecting Haitian Patrimony Initiative and a collaborative funding model with institutional members and personal member to contribute funding. These activities complement the work by the dLOC partners, who contribute content, and time and expertise in shared governance….”

Digital Library of the Caribbean

The Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC) is a cooperative digital library for resources from and about the Caribbean and circum-Caribbean. The dLOC partner institutions are the core of dLOC. dLOC partners retain all rights to their materials and provide access to digitized versions of Caribbean cultural, historical and research materials currently held in archives, libraries, and private collections. (Information on how to become a dLOC partner).

Read the dLOC Fact Sheet (and more about dLOC), register for a free mydLOC user account, or please contact us with any questions.

dLOC also supports collaborative project development and funding initiatives for partners, including the Protecting Haitian Patrimony Initiative and a collaborative funding model with institutional members and personal member to contribute funding. These activities complement the work by the dLOC partners, who contribute content, and time and expertise in shared governance….”

Gilead profits from Tuvada HIV treatment funded by taxpayers and patented by the U.S. government – The Washington Post

“Thomas Folks spent years in his U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab developing a treatment to block deadly HIV in monkeys. Then San Francisco AIDS researcher Robert Grant, using $50 million in federal grants, proved the treatment worked in people who engaged in risky sex.

Their work — almost fully funded by U.S. taxpayers — created a new use for an older prescription drug called Truvada: preventing HIV infection. But the U.S. government, which patented the treatment in 2015, is not receiving a penny for that use of the drug from Gilead Sciences, ­Truvada’s maker, which earned $3 billion in Truvada sales last year….

Gilead argues that the government’s patents for Truvada for PrEP, as the prevention treatment is called, are invalid. And the government has failed to reach a deal for royalties or other concessions from the company — benefits that could be used to distribute the drug more widely….”

The Higher Council for Science and Technology Joins cOAlition S | Plan S

“The Higher Council for Science and Technology (HCST) from Jordan is the first organisation in the Middle East to join cOAlition S.

HCST was established in 1987 as a public independent institution and acts as a national umbrella for all science & technology activities in Jordan. The objective of the Higher Council is to build a national science and technology base to contribute to the achievement of development goals, through increasing awareness of the significance of scientific research and development, granting the necessary funding and directing scientific and research activities, within national priorities, in line with development orientations.

cOAlition S is thrilled to welcome HCST as the latest member to the growing coalition and looks forward to collaborating with them in the coming months to realise its transformative Open Access plan….”

Challenging Academic Publishing – Scientific American Blog Network

Earlier this month, Springer Nature and ResearchGate announced that we will be working together on a pilot designed to remove barriers to research and to make the sharing of science easier. This may have been surprising to those who think of us as an established publishing house and a rogue start-up, respectively, when, in fact, we’re both trying to challenge the world of academic publishing to better meet the needs of researchers and the wider research community. This pilot is an opportunity for us to do just that and to combine our expertise in publishing high-quality research and building an online platform for millions of scientists and their work.

As part of this pilot, authors who have published in one of 23 Nature-branded journals since November 2017 will have the full versions of their articles posted in their ResearchGate profile, immediately creating more visibility for their work and easing its discovery. This is a significant development because authors of articles published in these journals are usually not permitted to share such downloadable versions of them….”

Resource Management in a Time of Fiscal Scarcity: Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Assessment for Journal Package Cancellations: The Serials Librarian: Vol 0, No 0

Abstract:  As a result of continual resource inflation and a decreasing budget, Kansas State University Libraries were required to conduct a large-scale electronic journal cancellation project. The current organizational model does not require librarian subject specialists to perform comprehensive collection development duties; therefore, content development librarians developed a methodology of collecting quantitative and qualitative statistics to collaboratively evaluate journals. This article will demonstrate the methodology of assessment, and serve as a working model for libraries operating under circumstances of labor shortages, budget cuts, and leadership restructuring.

Let It Flow: The Monopolization of Academic Content Providers and How It Threatens the Democratization of Information: The Serials Librarian: Vol 0, No 0

Abstract:  The monopolization of academic journal publishers concentrates power and valuable information into the hands of a few players in the marketplace. It has detrimental effects on how information flows and is accessed. This, in turn, has profound effects on how a nation progresses. Placed in a theoretical framework, utilizing the marketplace of ideas and the economies that coincide, this article takes a look at the history of Elsevier in order to chart this course toward monopolization. It exhibits the effect it has already had on the academic community, while offering two models of Open Access as a much sounder option.

Open access journal publishing in the Nordic countries

Abstract:  The number of open access (OA) journals and their share of all scholarly journals are usually estimated based on indexing in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). DOAJ’s coverage of OA journals from different regions of the world is, however, far from complete, particularly of journals publishing in languages other than English. Using alternative data sources for identification and manual verification, 437 scholarly OA journals published in the five Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden) were identified, and some key characteristics were studied. Of these, only 184 were indexed in DOAJ. A vast majority of the journals was published by scholarly societies or universities. Social sciences and humanities dominated as topics, and few journals charge authors. National or university-specific OJS portals have played a major role in enabling OA publishing. Around a third of the Nordic scholarly journals are currently OA.

After the Elsevier ‘Tipping Point,’ Research Libraries Consider Their Options – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Research librarians are giving notice: The pressures that led the University of California system to cut the cord with Elsevier aren’t foreign to their campuses….

2016 survey by the Association of College and Research Libraries showed that 60 percent of libraries had reported flat budgets for the previous five years, and 19 percent had seen decreased funding….”

To gather insights into Open rewards and incentives, survey targets 200 European funders – SPARC Europe

“This week, SPARC Europe, in consultation with ALLEA, The European Foundation Centre (EFC) and Science Europe, sent surveys to almost 200 funding bodies throughout Europe. The initiative is intended to garner insights into the various patterns of rewards and incentives being employed by Europe’s research funders to encourage openness to the research they fund. …

Key international funding bodies, national funding agencies, major charities and foundations, national academies and key research performing organisation are targeted for the survey, which will remain open until the end of April. Results will be shared in the form of a report that will be released this summer; and the dataset arising from the survey will also be published under an open licence.  …”