bioRxiv: the preprint server for biology

Authors : Richard Sever, Ted Roeder, Samantha Hindle, Linda Sussman, Kevin-John Black, Janet Argentine, Wayne Manos, John R. Inglis

The traditional publication process delays dissemination of new research, often by months, sometimes by years. Preprint servers decouple dissemination of research papers from their evaluation and certification by journals, allowing researchers to share work immediately, receive feedback from a much larger audience, and provide evidence of productivity long before formal publication.

Launched in 2013 as a non-profit community service, the bioRxiv server has brought preprint practice to the life sciences and recently posted its 64,000th manuscript.

The server now receives more than four million views per month and hosts papers spanning all areas of biology. Initially dominated by evolutionary biology, genetics/genomics and computational biology, bioRxiv has been increasingly populated by papers in neuroscience, cell and developmental biology, and many other fields.

Changes in journal and funder policies that encourage preprint posting have helped drive adoption, as has the development of bioRxiv technologies that allow authors to transfer papers easily between the server and journals.

A bioRxiv user survey found that 42% of authors post their preprints prior to journal submission whereas 37% post concurrently with journal submission. Authors are motivated by a desire to share work early; they value the feedback they receive, and very rarely experience any negative consequences of preprint posting.

Rapid dissemination via bioRxiv is also encouraging new initiatives that experiment with the peer review process and the development of novel approaches to literature filtering and assessment.

URL : bioRxiv: the preprint server for biology

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1101/833400

Services de gestion et de partage des données de recherche : ce qu’en pensent les chercheurs

Auteurs/Authors : Violaine Rebouillat, Ghislaine Chartron

En France, les professionnels de l’information scientifique et technique (IST) se positionnent sur le développement de services pour la gestion et la valorisation des données de recherche.

L’article interroge l’utilisation de ces services par les chercheurs. Il s’appuie sur 46 entretiens, réalisés auprès de chercheurs de l’Université de Strasbourg. Le catalogue Cat OPIDoR, référençant les services de données français, a servi de base d’étude pour l’enquête. Les résultats montrent que les services développés par les professionnels de l’IST correspondent pour une faible partie à ceux qu’utilisent les répondants.

Une des explications esquissées est qu’en matière de données les chercheurs sont davantage influencés par les recommandations des éditeurs que par celles des professionnels de l’IST.

URL : https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/ISKOFRANCE2019/hal-02307085

Open Access in developing countries – attitudes and experiences of researchers

Authors : Andy Nobes, Sian Harris

Open Access is often considered as particularly beneficial to researchers in the Global South. However, research into awareness of and attitudes to Open Access has been largely dominated by voices from the Global North.

A survey was conducted of 507 researchers from the developing world and connected to INASP’s AuthorAID project to ascertain experiences and attitudes to Open Access publishing.

The survey revealed problems for the researchers in gaining access to research literature in the first place. There was a very positive attitude to Open Access research and Open Access journals, but when selecting a journal in which to publish, Open Access was seen as a much less important criterion than factors relating to international reputation.

Overall, a majority of respondents had published in an Open Access journal and most of these had paid an article processing charge. Knowledge and use of self-archiving via repositories varied, and only around 20% had deposited their research in an institutional repository.

The study also examined attitudes to copyright, revealing most respondents had heard of Creative Commons licences and were positive about the sharing of research for educational use and dissemination, but there was unease about research being used for commercial purposes.

Respondents revealed a surprisingly positive stance towards openly sharing research data, although many revealed that they would need further guidance on how to do so. The survey also revealed that the majority had received emails from so called ‘predatory’ publishers and that a small minority had published in them.

URL : Open Access in developing countries – attitudes and experiences of researchers

Alternative location : https://zenodo.org/record/3464868

An Analysis of Search Results from Institutional Repository: Econpapers

Authors : Sidharta Chatterjee, Sujoy Dey, Mousumi Samanta

The goal of this research is to examine and explore information retrieval process of patrons who access institutional repositories. Repositories are generally hosted by public universities and run by volunteers which allow researchers to submit their draft versions of their manuscripts in pre-print forms.

In this study, we analyze using search methods to sort out research papers classified according to their levels of relevance that are available from a repository, and report the pattern of search results as our findings.

Our model employs search methods for searching Econpapers which utilize RePEc bibliographic data. Our analysis attempts to highlight how information seekers, scholars and researchers search relevant topics of their interest and how relevant such information is which is retrieved from an institutional repository.

This could aid researchers to modify their search processes to obtain better search results from their queries. The goal is to obtain the most relevant documents from online search.

We discuss about the methods employed to retrieve information which is most pertinent to the requirements of researchers. A broad implication could be better utilization of time and resources for efficient retrieval of the most relevant documents of interest that could be expected from searching institutional repositories.

URI : https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/id/eprint/96178

Collaboration, Consultation, or Transaction: Modes of Team Research in Humanities Scholarship and Strategies for Library Engagement

Authors : Megan Senseney, Eleanor Dickson Koehl, Leanne Nay

With the rise of digital scholarship, humanists are participating in increasingly complex research teams and partnerships, and academic libraries are developing innovative service models to meet their needs.

This paper explores modes of coworking in humanities research by synthesizing responses from two qualitative studies of research practices in the humanities and proposes a taxonomy of multiperson research that includes collaborative, consultative, and transactional research partnerships among scholars, graduate students, academic staff, and a range of other potential stakeholders.

Based on an analysis of humanities scholars’ self-described research behaviors, we provide recommendations for academic librarians who are developing and sustaining service models for digital scholarship.

URL : Collaboration, Consultation, or Transaction: Modes of Team Research in Humanities Scholarship and Strategies for Library Engagement

DOI : https://doi.org/10.5860/crl.80.6.787

Perspectives From Authors and Editors in the Biomedical Disciplines on Predatory Journals: Survey Study

Authors : Andrew J Cohen, German Patino, Puneet Kamal, Medina Ndoye, Anas Tresh, Jorge Mena, Christi Butler, Samuel Washington, Benjamin N Breyer

Background

Predatory journals fail to fulfill the tenets of biomedical publication: peer review, circulation, and access in perpetuity. Despite increasing attention in the lay and scientific press, no studies have directly assessed the perceptions of the authors or editors involved.

Objective

Our objective was to understand the motivation of authors in sending their work to potentially predatory journals. Moreover, we aimed to understand the perspective of journal editors at journals cited as potentially predatory.

Methods

Potential online predatory journals were randomly selected among 350 publishers and their 2204 biomedical journals. Author and editor email information was valid for 2227 total potential participants.

A survey for authors and editors was created in an iterative fashion and distributed. Surveys assessed attitudes and knowledge about predatory publishing. Narrative comments were invited.

Results

A total of 249 complete survey responses were analyzed. A total of 40% of editors (17/43) surveyed were not aware that they were listed as an editor for the particular journal in question.

A total of 21.8% of authors (45/206) confirmed a lack of peer review. Whereas 77% (33/43) of all surveyed editors were at least somewhat familiar with predatory journals, only 33.0% of authors (68/206) were somewhat familiar with them (P<.001). Only 26.2% of authors (54/206) were aware of Beall’s list of predatory journals versus 49% (21/43) of editors (P<.001).

A total of 30.1% of authors (62/206) believed their publication was published in a predatory journal. After defining predatory publishing, 87.9% of authors (181/206) surveyed would not publish in the same journal in the future.

Conclusions

Authors publishing in suspected predatory journals are alarmingly uninformed in terms of predatory journal quality and practices. Editors’ increased familiarity with predatory publishing did little to prevent their unwitting listing as editors.

Some suspected predatory journals did provide services akin to open access publication. Education, research mentorship, and a realignment of research incentives may decrease the impact of predatory publishing.

URL : Perspectives From Authors and Editors in the Biomedical Disciplines on Predatory Journals: Survey Study

DOI : https://doi.org/10.2196/13769

Open science and modified funding lotteries can impede the natural selection of bad science

Authors : Paul E. Smaldino, Matthew A. Turner, Pablo A. Contreras Kallens

Assessing scientists using exploitable metrics can lead to the degradation of research methods even without any strategic behaviour on the part of individuals, via ‘the natural selection of bad science.’

Institutional incentives to maximize metrics like publication quantity and impact drive this dynamic. Removing these incentives is necessary, but institutional change is slow.

However, recent developments suggest possible solutions with more rapid onsets. These include what we call open science improvements, which can reduce publication bias and improve the efficacy of peer review. In addition, there have been increasing calls for funders to move away from prestige- or innovation-based approaches in favour of lotteries.

We investigated whether such changes are likely to improve the reproducibility of science even in the presence of persistent incentives for publication quantity through computational modelling.

We found that modified lotteries, which allocate funding randomly among proposals that pass a threshold for methodological rigour, effectively reduce the rate of false discoveries, particularly when paired with open science improvements that increase the publication of negative results and improve the quality of peer review.

In the absence of funding that targets rigour, open science improvements can still reduce false discoveries in the published literature but are less likely to improve the overall culture of research practices that underlie those publications.

URL : Open science and modified funding lotteries can impede the natural selection of bad science

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.190194