E-Journals and the Big Deal: A Review of the Literature

Author : Cindy Sjoberg

Faced with shrinking budgets and increased subscription prices, many academic libraries are seeking ways to reduce the cost of e-journal access. A common target for cuts is the “Big Deal,” or large bundled subscription model, a term coined by Kenneth Frazier in a 2001 paper criticizing the effects of the Big Deal on the academic community.

The purpose of this literature review is to examine issues related to reducing e-journal costs, including criteria for subscription retention or cancellation, decision-making strategies, impacts of cancellations, and other options for e-journal content provision. Commonly used criteria for decision-making include usage statistics, overlap analysis, and input from subject specialists.

The most commonly used strategy for guiding the process and aggregating data is the rubric or decision grid. While the e-journal landscape supports several access models, such as Pay-Per-View, cloud access, and interlibrary loan, the Big Deal continues to dominate. Trends over the past several years point to dwindling support for the Big Deal however, due largely to significant annual rate increases and loss of content control.

URL : http://scholarworks.sjsu.edu/slissrj/vol6/iss2/3/

Free articles and Accounting for the timing effect

Authors : Nursyeha Binte Yahaya, Tay Chee Hsien Aaron

Various studies have attempted to assess the amount of free full text available on the web and recent work have suggested that we are close to the 50% mark for freely available articles (Archambault et al. 2013; Björk et al. 2010; Jamali and Nabavi 2015).

Our paper contributes to the literature by taking into account the timing issue by studying when the papers were made free. We sampled citations made by researchers who published in 2015 (based on records in the Singapore Management University Institution repository), checked the number of cited papers that were free at the time of the study and then attempted to “carbon date” the freely available papers to determine when they were first made available.

This allows us to estimate the length of time the free cited article was made available before the citing paper was published. We find that in our sample of cited papers in Economics, the median freely available cited paper (oldest variant) was made available 7-8 years before the citing paper was published.

Of these papers found free via Google Scholar, the majority 67% (n=47) was made available via University websites (not including Institutional repositories) and 32.8% (n=23) were final published versions.

URL : https://arxiv.org/abs/1611.01272

Où sont les données de la recherche ? : Essai de cartographie

Auteur/Author : Cécile Delay-Artous

La question émergente en France des données de la recherche se situe dans un cadre institutionnel foisonnant mais rigide, délicat à cerner. La recherche est aussi financée et évaluée au niveau européen.

Cette organisation nationale et européenne se double d’un aspect international inhérent à la recherche et aux échanges d’informations rapides et répétés, accélérés par le développement d’Internet.

Le labyrinthe institutionnel franco-européen se superpose ainsi avec le millefeuille international et disciplinaire du monde de la recherche. Enfin, la proximité de deux mouvements qui ne sont pourtant pas synonyme, l’Open Access et l’Open Data, vient encore troubler la compréhension de ce panorama.

Il n’est donc pas aisé de comprendre les rôles de chacun des acteurs quant aux données de la recherche. C’est à une clarification de ce paysage que nous nous proposons de participer, en initiant une cartographie des initiatives et acteurs visibles en France concernant les données des sciences humaines et sociales.

URL : https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01369745

Hybrid open access—A longitudinal study

Authors : Mikael Laakso, Bo-Christer Björk

This study estimates the development of hybrid open access (OA), i.e. articles published openly on the web within subscription-access journals. Included in the study are the five largest publishers of scholarly journals; Elsevier, Springer, Wiley-Blackwell, Taylor & Francis, and Sage.

Since no central indexing or standardized metadata exists for identifying hybrid OA an explorative bottom-up methodological approach was developed. The individual search and filtering features of each publisher website and a-priori availability of data were leveraged to the extent possible.

The results indicate a strong sustained growth in the volume of articles published as hybrid OA during 2007 (666 articles) to 2013 (13 994 articles). The share of hybrid articles was at 3.8% of total published articles for the period of 2011–2013 for journals with at least one identified hybrid OA article.

Journals within the Scopus discipline categorization of Health and Life Sciences, in particular the field of Medicine, were found to be among the most frequent publishers of hybrid OA content.

The study surfaces the many methodological challenges involved in obtaining metrics regarding hybrid OA, a growing business for journal publishers as science policy pressures for reduced access barriers to research publications.

URL : Hybrid open access—A longitudinal study

DOI : http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.joi.2016.08.002

State of the art report on open access publishing of research data in the humanities

Auteurs/Authors : Stefan Buddenbohm, Nathanael Cretin, Elly Dijk, Bertrand Gai e, Maaike De Jong, Jean-Luc Minel, Blandine Nouvel

Publishing research data as open data is not yet common practice for researchers in the arts and humanities, and lags behind other scientific fields, such as the natural sciences. Moreover, even when humanities researchers publish their data in repositories and archives, these data are often hard to find and use by other researchers in the field.

The goal of Work Package 7 of the the HaS (Humanities at Scale) DARIAH project is to develop an open humanities data platform for the humanities. Work in task 7.1 is a joint effort of Data Archiving and Networked Services (DANS), Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the University of Göttingen – State and University Library (UGOE-SUB).

This report gives an overview of the various aspects that are connected to open access publishing of research data in the humanities. After the introduction, where we give definitions of key concepts, we describe the research data life cycle.

We present an overview of the different stakeholders involved and we look into advantages and obstacles for researchers to share research data. Furthermore, a description of the European data repositories is given, followed by certification standards of trusted digital data repositories.

The possibility of data citation is important for sharing open data and is also described in this report. We also discuss the standards and use of metadata in the humanities. Finally, we discuss best practice example of open access research data system in the humanities: the French open research data ecosystem.

With this report we provide information and guidance on open access publishing of humanities research data for researchers. The report is the result of a desk study towards the current state of open access research data and the specific challenges for humanities. It will serve as input for Task 7.2., which will deliver a design and sustainability plan for an open humanities data platform, and for Task 7.3, which will deliver this platform.

URL : https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01357208

A review of the literature on citation impact indicators

Citation impact indicators nowadays play an important role in research evaluation, and consequently these indicators have received a lot of attention in the bibliometric and scientometric literature. This paper provides an in-depth review of the literature on citation impact indicators. First, an overview is given of the literature on bibliographic databases that can be used to calculate citation impact indicators (Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar).

Next, selected topics in the literature on citation impact indicators are reviewed in detail. The first topic is the selection of publications and citations to be included in the calculation of citation impact indicators. The second topic is the normalization of citation impact indicators, in particular normalization for field differences.

Counting methods for dealing with co-authored publications are the third topic, and citation impact indicators for journals are the last topic. The paper concludes by offering some recommendations for future research.

URL : http://arxiv.org/abs/1507.02099

Access to and Preservation of Scientific Information in Europe

Executive summary

An important aspect of open science is a move towards open access to publicly funded research results, including scientific publications as well as research data. Based on the structure of Commission Recommendation C(2012) 4890 final and its assorted reporting mechanism (the National Points of Reference for scientific information) this report provides an overview on access to and preservation of scientific information in the EU Member States as well as Norway and Turkey. It is based on self-reporting by the participating states as well as cross-referencing with other relevant documents and further desk research.

Concerning open access to scientific peer-reviewed publications, most EU Member States reported a national preference for one of the two types of open access, either the Green (self-archiving) or the Gold (open access publishing) model. Preference for the Green model is found in Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Ireland, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia and Spain. Those expressing a preference for the Gold model are Hungary, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

Other Member States support both models equally, such as Germany, France, Croatia, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland and Finland. However, the expressed preferences for one of the two models are not pure models in which only one route is followed. Instead, there is generally a system of predominance of one model with the possibility of using the other model, so a mixture of both routes results.

While few Member States have a national law requiring open access to publications, a mandate put in place by law is not necessarily stronger or more effective than a mandate put in place by a single institution or funder. For example, an open access mandate is strong as it ties open access to possible withdrawal of funds in the case of non-compliance, or to the evaluation of researchers’ careers.

Overall, policies on open access to research data are less developed across EU countries than policies and strategies on open access to research publications. However, individual Member State feedback shows a general acknowledgement of the importance of open research data and of policies, strategies and actions addressed at fostering the collection, curation, preservation and re-use of research data. Based on the self-reporting of the EU Member States and participating associated countries, the following classification is proposed.

  • Very little or no open access to research data policies in place and no plan for a more developed policy in the near future: Cyprus, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland.
  • Very little or no open access to research data policies in place, but some plans in place or under development: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, Turkey.
  • Open access policies/institutional strategies or subject-based initiatives for research data already in place: Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, the United Kingdom.

Concerning the curation and preservation of scientific information (another issue covered by the 2012 Recommendation), institutional repositories are very well developed in most Member States although some NPR reports stress that, in many cases, institutional repositories are not certified to properly guarantee the long-term preservation of scientific information.

NPR reports also show that many Member States have made a clear effort to become more efficient and transparent regarding scientific information and research activities in general. This being said, some Member States underline research information purposes rather than the objective of open access to research results, with most CRIS systems containing meta-data and not necessarily full results.

Nevertheless, a tendency can be observed among the latest wave of EU enlargement countries that they are focusing efforts on developing centralised national repositories for preservation to be connected to the existing national CRIS systems and to be inter-operable across the EU with, for example, OpenAIRE protocols.

Many Member States have devised global policies and strategies for developing e-infrastructures in a comprehensive way. Such strategies often contain specific chapters or sections addressing scientific information, research and innovation, covering storage and high-performance computing capabilities as well as the appropriate dissemination, access and visibility of research results. As is the case in other areas, the stage of e-infrastructure development varies greatly among Member States, and it is worth noting differences in funding capabilities in this area. The support provided by EU-funded projects and initiatives is of significant importance here.

Concerning participation in multi-stakeholder dialogues and activities, several countries have set up national coordination bodies or networks (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Austria, Poland, Portugal). Other countries rely on a university or a university library (or an association of libraries) to coordinate national stakeholders (Czech Republic, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta) or on their research promotion agency/research councils (Cyprus, Sweden, the United Kingdom) or their academy of science (Slovakia).

Specific events, such as open-access workshops or activities during the annual open-access week, have also been identified as a way to galvanise stakeholder interaction at the national level (Czech Republic, Croatia, Italy, Romania). Additionally to EU fora (such as ERA, ERAC, the NPR, the Digital ERA Forum and the E-IRG), EU funded projects such as OpenAIRE FOSTER and PASTEUR4OA as well as PEER, Dariah and Serscida were mentioned as important support mechanisms. Furthermore, Belgium and the Netherlands have established bilateral cooperation and among the Nordic states (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden) part of the dialogue on open science is conducted within the framework of the NordForsk organisation.

URL : Access to and Preservation of Scientific Information in Europe

Alternative location : http://ec.europa.eu/research/openscience/pdf/openaccess/npr_report.pdf