Scholarly Communication at the Crossroad: From subscription to Open Access?

Author : Gayle R.Y.C. Chan

Recent developments in the scholarly communication ecosystem toward open access (OA) have become highly complex in how researchers discover and use information, create, and select publication venues to disseminate their research. Institution policy makers, grant funders, publishers, researchers and libraries are coming to grips with the flux in OA publishing.

What is expected is that OA will secure a growing market share, with major funders pushing OA mandates with timelines and publishers launching new OA versus traditional journals. Libraries have a critical role to play in resolving the complexities resulting from the impending ‘flip’ of journals from subscription to OA.

The University of Hong Kong (HKU), being the foremost research institution in Asia, has experienced YOY double digit growth in gold open access publications in recent years. From the collection development perspective, there is an urgent need to understand the trend in research output in order to reassess the resources budget allocation and expenditures to accommodate the needed funding support for OA publishing.

This paper presents the strategies adopted by HKU in preparing the budget transition toward OA publishing and to strengthen the library’s negotiating power in securing sustainable big deals that factor in support for researchers to go the OA route.

The value for money, challenge and risk of committing in multiyear big deals without accounting for publishing expenditures in OA contents will be discussed. Analytics on research output, journal subscription and article publishing expenditures will be used to inform the bigger picture of funding access to scholarly contents.

URL : Scholarly Communication at the Crossroad: From subscription to Open Access?

Alternative location : http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/2192

The Cost of Astronomy Publishing fees in astronomy: Is something rotten in the case of Denmark?

Author : Bertil F. Dorch

Using Scopus and national sources, I have investigated the evolution of the cost of publishing in Danish astronomy on a fine scale over a number of years.

I find that the number of publications per year from Danish astronomers increased by a factor of four during 15 years: naturally, the corresponding potential cost of publishing must have increased similarly.

The actual realized cost of publishing in core journals are investigated for a high profile Danish astronomy research institutions. I argue that the situation is highly unstable if the current cost scenario continues, and I speculate that Danish astronomy is risking a scholarly communication collapse due to the combination of increasing subscription cost, increased research output, and increased direct publishing costs related to Open Access and other page charges.

URL : The Cost of Astronomy Publishing fees in astronomy: Is something rotten in the case of Denmark?

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1051/epjconf/201818612005

Les Sciences Humaines et Sociales, moteurs de l’accès ouvert : la preuve par Cybergeo

Auteurs/Authors : Christine Kosmopoulos, Denise Pumain

En mai 2016 Cybergeo : Revue européenne de géographie fêtait à l’Auditorium Marie Curie (CNRS, Paris) ses 20 années d’existence. Première revue nativement numérique en sciences sociales, Cybergeo s’inscrit en pionnière de la diffusion scientifique en libre accès.

Forte de ses 20 ans d’expérience, elle apporte la preuve qu’un modèle alternatif de diffusion de l’information scientifique est possible, ouvert et contrôlé par la communauté scientifique mondiale. Elle témoigne également du très fort impact de l’accès ouvert en sciences lorsqu’il s’accompagne d’une attention soutenue à l’innovation.

URL : https://journals.openedition.org/cybergeo/29209

Post-publication peer review in biomedical journals: overcoming obstacles and disincentives to knowledge sharing

Authors : Valerie Matarese, Karen Shashok

The importance of post-publication peer review (PPPR) as a type of knowledge exchange has been emphasized by several authorities in research publishing, yet biomedical journals do not always facilitate this type of publication.

Here we report our experience publishing a commentary intended to offer constructive feedback on a previously published article. We found that publishing our comment required more time and effort than foreseen, because of obstacles encountered at some journals.

Using our professional experience as authors’ editors and our knowledge of publication policies as a starting point, we reflect on the probable reasons behind these obstacles, and suggest ways in which journals could make PPPR easier. In addition, we argue that PPPR should be more explicitly valued and rewarded in biomedical disciplines, and suggest how these publications could be included in research evaluations.

Eliminating obstacles and disincentives to PPPR is essential in light of the key roles of post-publication analysis and commentary in drawing attention to shortcomings in published articles that were overlooked during pre-publication peer review.

URL : Post-publication peer review in biomedical journals: overcoming obstacles and disincentives to knowledge sharing

DOI : https://dx.doi.org/10.31229/osf.io/8kxyz

Case for the double-blind peer review

Author : Lucie Tvrznikova

Peer review is a process designed to produce a fair assessment of research quality prior to publication of scholarly work in a journal. Demographics, nepotism, and seniority have been all shown to affect reviewer behavior suggesting the most common, single-blind review method (or the less common open review method) might be biased.

A survey of current research suggests that double-blind review offers a solution to many biases stemming from author’s gender, seniority, or location without imposing any major downsides.

URL : https://arxiv.org/abs/1807.01408

Open Science Practices Adopted by Latin American & Caribbean Open Access Journals

Authors : Andre Appel, Ivonne Lujano, Sarita Albagli

The objective of this study is to investigate how Open Science (OS) values and practices have influenced open access (OA) journals publishers in Latin American and the Caribbean (LA&C) countries.

Our key research question is: to what extent are these practices being adopted by LA&C journals? In order to address this question, we conducted a survey with a sample of LA&C journals listed on the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) database.

The results reveal that many journals are somewhat aware of or informed about most of open science practices being discussed, but just some of them have already successfully adopted those practices.

URL : https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01800164v3

Inequality in Knowledge Production: The Integration of Academic Infrastructure by Big Publishers

Authors : Alejandro Posada, George Chen

This paper attempts to illustrate the implications of a simultaneous redirection of the big publishers’ business strategy towards open access business models and the acquisition of scholarly infrastructure utilizing the conceptual framework of rent-seeking theory.

To document such a transformation, we utilized financial databases to analyze the mergers and acquisitions of the top publicly traded academic publishers. We then performed a service analysis to situate the acquisitions of publishers within the knowledge and education life-cycles, illustrating what we term to be their vertical integration within their respective expansion target life-cycles.

Implications of higher education institutions’ increased dependency towards the companies and increased influence by the companies on the institution and individual researcher were noted from the vertical integration of products.

Said vertical integration is analyzed via a rent theory framework and described to be a form of rent-seeking complementary to the redirection of business strategies to open access. Finally, the vertical integration is noted to generate exclusionary effects upon researchers/institutions in the global south.

URL : https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01816707