Zombie Journals: Designing a Technological Infrastructure for a Precarious Journal

Authors : Daniel Paul O’Donnell, Carey Viejou, Sylvia Chow, Rumi Graham, Jarret McKinnon, Dorothea Morrison, Reed Parsons, Courtney Rieger, Vanja Spirić, Elaine Toth

Background

The Meeting of the Minds graduate student journal is edited primarily by students from our Masters programme. This means that our editorial board is subject to high annual turnover and that our technological infrastructure and workflow needed to be easy to train for, accommodate differing levels of technological skill and editorial interest, and provide archiving that did not require a continuing interest in the journal by future generations of students.

Analysis

This article provides a detailed and comparative account of the “off-the-shelf ” systems and software used in developing the journal with an explanation of the rationale behind our choices.

Conclusion and implications

The choices we made can be adopted by other journals interested in a low-cost, “future-proof ” approach to developing a publishing infrastructure.

URL : Zombie Journals: Designing a Technological Infrastructure for a Precarious Journal

DOI : https://src-online.ca/index.php/src/article/view/296

A multi-disciplinary perspective on emergent and future innovations in peer review

Authors : Jonathan P. Tennant, Jonathan M. Dugan, Daniel Graziotin, Damien C. Jacques, François Waldner, Daniel Mietchen, Yehia Elkhatib, Lauren B. Collister, Christina K. Pikas, Tom Crick, Paola Masuzzo, Anthony Caravaggi, Devin R. Berg, Kyle E. Niemeyer, Tony Ross-Hellauer, Sara Mannheimer, Lillian Rigling, Daniel S. Kat, Bastian Greshake Tzovaras, Josmel Pacheco-Mendoza, Nazeefa Fatima, Marta Poblet, Marios Isaakidis, Dasapta Erwin Irawan, Sébastien Renaut, Christopher R. Madan, Lisa Matthias, Jesper Nørgaard Kjær, Daniel Paul O’Donnell, Cameron Neylon, Sarah Kearns, Manojkumar Selvaraju, Julien Colomb

Peer review of research articles is a core part of our scholarly communication system. In spite of its importance, the status and purpose of peer review is often contested. What is its role in our modern digital research and communications infrastructure?

Does it perform to the high standards with which it is generally regarded? Studies of peer review have shown that it is prone to bias and abuse in numerous dimensions, frequently unreliable, and can fail to detect even fraudulent research.

With the advent of Web technologies, we are now witnessing a phase of innovation and experimentation in our approaches to peer review. These developments prompted us to examine emerging models of peer review from a range of disciplines and venues, and to ask how they might address some of the issues with our current systems of peer review.

We examine the functionality of a range of social Web platforms, and compare these with the traits underlying a viable peer review system: quality control, quantified performance metrics as engagement incentives, and certification and reputation.

Ideally, any new systems will demonstrate that they out-perform current models while avoiding as many of the biases of existing systems as possible. We conclude that there is considerable scope for new peer review initiatives to be developed, each with their own potential issues and advantages.

We also propose a novel hybrid platform model that, at least partially, resolves many of the technical and social issues associated with peer review, and can potentially disrupt the entire scholarly communication system.

Success for any such development relies on reaching a critical threshold of research community engagement with both the process and the platform, and therefore cannot be achieved without a significant change of incentives in research environments.

URL : A multi-disciplinary perspective on emergent and future innovations in peer review

DOI : http://dx.doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.12037.1