Individuation through infrastructure: Get Full Text Research, data extraction and the academic publishing oligopoly

Author : Samuel Moore

This article explores the recent turn within academic publishing towards ‘seamless access’, an approach to content provision that ensures users do not have to continually authenticate in order to access journal content.

Through a critical exploration of Get Full Text Research, a service developed collaboratively by five of the world’s largest academic publishers to provide such seamless access to academic research, the article shows how publishers are seeking to control the ways in which readers access publications in order to trace, control and ultimately monetise user interactions on their platforms.

Theorised as a process of individuation through infrastructure, the article reveals how publishers are attempting an ontological shift to position the individual, quantifiable researcher, rather than the published content, at the centre of the scholarly communication universe.

The implications of the shift towards individuation are revealed as part of a broader trend in scholarly communication infrastructure towards data extraction, mirroring a trend within digital capitalism more generally.

URL : Individuation through infrastructure: Get Full Text Research, data extraction and the academic publishing oligopoly


Researcher’s Perceptions on Publishing “Negative” Results and Open Access

Authors : Lucía Echevarría, Alberto Malerba, Virginia Arechavala-Gomeza

Scientific advance is based on reproducibility, corroboration, and availability of research results. However, large numbers of experimental results that contradict previous work do not get published and many research results are not freely available as they are hidden behind paywalls.

As part of COST Action “DARTER”, a network of researchers in the field of RNA therapeutics, we have performed a small survey among our members and their colleagues to assess their opinion on the subject of publishing contradictory or ambiguous results and their attitude to open access (OA) publishing.

Our survey indicates that, although researchers highly value publication of “negative” results, they often do not publish their own, citing lack of time and the perception that those results may not be as highly cited. OA, on the other hand, seems to be widely accepted, but in many cases not actively sought by researchers due to higher costs associated with it.

URL : Researcher’s Perceptions on Publishing “Negative” Results and Open Access


International authorship and collaboration across bioRxiv preprints

Authors : Richard J Abdill, Elizabeth M Adamowicz, Ran Blekhman

Preprints are becoming well established in the life sciences, but relatively little is known about the demographics of the researchers who post preprints and those who do not, or about the collaborations between preprint authors.

Here, based on an analysis of 67,885 preprints posted on bioRxiv, we find that some countries, notably the United States and the United Kingdom, are overrepresented on bioRxiv relative to their overall scientific output, while other countries (including China, Russia, and Turkey) show lower levels of bioRxiv adoption.

We also describe a set of ‘contributor countries’ (including Uganda, Croatia and Thailand): researchers from these countries appear almost exclusively as non-senior authors on international collaborations.

Lastly, we find multiple journals that publish a disproportionate number of preprints from some countries, a dynamic that almost always benefits manuscripts from the US.

URL :  International authorship and collaboration across bioRxiv preprints


Our Study is Published, But the Journey is Not Finished!

Authors : Olivier Pourret, Katsuhiko Suzuki, Yoshio Takahashi

Each June, we receive e-mails from publishers welcoming the evolution of their journals’ journal impact factor (JIF). The JIF is a controversial metric (Callaway 2016), and it is worth asking, “What’s behind it?”

In this age of “publish or perish” (Harzing 2007), we take much time and effort to write our papers and get them published. But how much time and effort do we put into finding readers or ensuring that we are reaching the right audience? Are metrics, such as the JIF, good guides for how well we are doing at reaching our target audience?


Curated Archiving of Research Software Artifacts: Lessons Learned from the French Open Archive (HAL)

Authors : Roberto di Cosmo, Morane Gruenpeter, Bruno Marmol, Alain Monteil, Laurent Romary, Jozefina Sadowsa

Software has become an indissociable support of technical and scientific knowledge. The preservation of this universal body of knowledge is as essential as preserving research articles and data sets.

In the quest to make scientific results reproducible, and pass knowledge to future generations, we must preserve these three main pillars: research articles that describe the results, the data sets used or produced, and the software that embodies the logic of the data transformation.

The collaboration between Software Heritage (SWH), the Center for Direct Scientific Communication (CCSD) and the scientific and technical information services (IES) of The French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (Inria) has resulted in a specified moderation and curation workflow for research software artifacts deposited in the HAL the French global open access repository.

The curation workflow was developed to help digital librarians and archivists handle this new and peculiar artifact – software source code. While implementing the workflow, a set of guidelines has emerged from the challenges and the solutions put in place to help all actors involved in the process.

URL : Curated Archiving of Research Software Artifacts: Lessons Learned from the French Open Archive (HAL)


Research Data Management for Master’s Students: From Awareness to Action

Authors: Daen Adriaan Ben Smits, Marta Teperek

This article provides an analysis of how sixteen recently graduated master’s students from the Netherlands perceive research data management. It is important to study the master’s students’ attitudes towards this, as students in this phase prepare themselves for their career. Some of them might become future academics or policymakers, thus, potentially, the future advocates of good data management and reproducible science.

In general, students were rather unsure what ‘data management’ meant and would often confuse it with data analysis, study design or methodology, or ethics and privacy. When students defined the concept, they focussed on privacy aspects. Concepts such as open data and the ‘FAIR’ principles were rarely mentioned, even though these are the cornerstones of contemporary data management efforts.

In practice, the students managed their own data in an ad hoc way, and only a few of them worked with a clear data management plan. Illustrative of this is that half of the interviewees did not know where to find their data anymore. Furthermore, their study programmes had diverse approaches to data management education.

Most of the classes offered were limited in scope. Nevertheless, the students seemed to be aware of the importance of data management and were willing to learn more about good data management practices.

This report helps to catch an important first glimpse of how master’s students (from different scientific backgrounds) think about research data management. Only by knowing this, accurate measures can be taken to improve data management awareness and skills.

The article also provides some useful recommendations on what such measures might be, and introduces some of the steps already taken by the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft).

URL : Research Data Management for Master’s Students: From Awareness to Action


Research Data Management Status of Science and Technology Research Institutes in Korea

Authors : Myung-seok Choi, Sanghwan Lee

Recent advances in digital technology and the data-driven science paradigm has led to a proliferation of research data, which are becoming more important in scholarly communications.

The sharing and reuse of research data can play a key role in enhancing the reusability and reproducibility of research, and data from publicly funded projects are assumed to be public goods. This is seen as a movement of open science and, more specifically, open research data.

Many countries, such as the USA, UK, and Australia, are pushing ahead with implementing policies and infrastructure for open research data. In this paper, we present survey results pertaining to the creation, management, and utilization of data for researchers from government-funded research institutes of science and technology in Korea.

We then introduce recent regulations stipulating a mandated data management plan for national R&D projects and on-going efforts to realize open research data in Korea.

URL : Research Data Management Status of Science and Technology Research Institutes in Korea