Social engagement and institutional repositories: a case study

Author : Susan Boulton

This article explores the community reach and societal impact of institutional repositories, in particular Griffith Research Online (GRO), Griffith University’s institutional repository.

To promote research on GRO, and to encourage people to click through to the repository content, a pilot social media campaign and some subsequent smaller social media activities were undertaken in 2018.

After briefly touching on these campaigns, this article provides some reflections from these activities and proposes options for the future direction of social engagement and GRO in particular, and for institutional repositories in general.

This undertaking necessitates a shift in focus from repositories as a resource for the scholarly community to a resource for the community at large. The campaign also highlighted the need to look beyond performance metrics to social media metrics as a measure of the social and community impact of a repository.

Whilst the article is written from one Australian university’s perspective, the drivers and challenges behind researchers and universities translating their research into economic, social, environmental and cultural impacts are national and international.

The primary takeaway message is for libraries to take more of a proactive stance and to kick-start conversations within their institutions and with their clients to actively partner in creating opportunities to share research.

URL : Social engagement and institutional repositories: a case study

DOI : http://doi.org/10.1629/uksg.504

The Australian Research Data Commons

Authors : Michelle Barker, Ross Wilkinson, Andrew Treloar

A research data commons can provide researchers with the data and resources necessary to conduct world class research. More than this, a research data commons can be transformational in facilitating change in the way research is conducted, in terms of both research culture and the availability of research data and analytical tools.

This paper describes frameworks needed to build a transformational data commons, through examination of the development of the Australian Research Data Commons (ARDC) ARDC was formed in 2018 as part of a 20-year vision to transform Australia’s research culture by enabling access to the digital data and eResearch platforms that can significantly enhance research capacity.

ARDC is located within both national and international eResearch ecosystems, and its unique positioning must be understood, alongside the achievements of its three predecessor organisations, to understand the niche from which ARDC aims to provide maximum value and impact.

Consideration is given to the challenges inherent in both the current Australian ecosystem and beyond, to articulate ARDC’s focus going forward. The paper concludes with consideration of the international dimension, drawing on discussions around the development of a global data commons.

URL : The Australian Research Data Commons

DOI : http://doi.org/10.5334/dsj-2019-044

Exploring Initiatives for Open Educational Practices at an Australian and a Brazilian University

Authors : Carina Bossu, Marineli Meier

This paper explores some key developments in Open Educational Practices (OEP) in higher education in Australia and in Brazil. More specifically, it focuses on the analysis of two individual universities: the University of Tasmania, in Australia; and the Federal University of Paraná, in Brazil.

They are both public and mostly face-to-face universities trying to engage with OEP to enhance their blended learning offerings, and more generally learning and teaching.

However, these institutions are distinctive in terms of their student numbers, their blended learning approaches, their role within their own communities, and their OEP strategies and initiatives.

We will present some of the key policies and strategies adopted by these universities to support OEP, as well as the impact and the opportunities at present.

The discussion in this paper will then attempt to make some recommendations for future directions of OEP adoption not only in these two countries, but also elsewhere.

URL : Exploring Initiatives for Open Educational Practices at an Australian and a Brazilian University

DOI : http://doi.org/10.5334/jime.475

A Very Long Embargo: Journal Choice Reveals Active Non-Compliance with Funder Open Access Policies by Australian and Canadian Neuroscientists

Authors: Shaun Yon-Seng Khoo, Belinda Po Pyn Lay

Research funders around the world have implemented open access policies that require funded research to be made open access, usually by self-archiving, within 12 months of publication.

Elsevier is unique among major science publishers because it produces several journals with non-compliant self-archiving embargoes of more than 12 months. We used Elsevier’s Scopus database to study the rate at which Australian and Canadian neuroscientists publish in Elsevier’s non-compliant (embargoes > 12 months) and compliant journals (embargoes ≤ 12 months).

We also examined publications in immediate open access neuroscience journals that had the DOAJ Seal and neuroscience publications in open access mega-journals. We found that the implementation of Australian and Canadian funder open access policies in 2012/2013 and 2015 did not reduce the number of publications in non-compliant journals.

Instead, scientific output in all publication types increased with the greatest growth in immediate open access journals. This data suggests that funder open access policies that are similar to the Australian and Canadian policies are likely to have little effect beyond an association with a general cultural trend towards open access.

URL : A Very Long Embargo: Journal Choice Reveals Active Non-Compliance with Funder Open Access Policies by Australian and Canadian Neuroscientists

DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/lq.10252

 

Student perceptions of writing with Wikipedia in Australian higher education

Authors : Robert Cummings, Frances DiLauro

The benefits of teaching with Wikipedia in higher education have been investigated for more than a decade and practitioners have claimed a fairly uniform set of outcomes. Although Wikipedia is a global knowledge platform, many studies of the benefits of teaching with Wikipedia have been conducted in U.S. higher education institutions.

The authors taught with Wikipedia in writing classes at the University of Sydney, Australia, surveying and interviewing students to both verify the traditional benefits of teaching with Wikipedia and investigate a new set of perceived benefits.

This study finds evidence that students who worked with Wikipedia in the writing classroom remained neutral in their opinions as to the legitimacy of information on Wikipedia and skeptical as to its utility in mastering writing course outcomes.

DOI : http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/7488

The evolution of open access to research and data in Australian higher education

“Open access (OA) in the Australian tertiary education sector is evolving rapidly and, in this article, we review developments in two related areas: OA to scholarly research publications and open data. OA can support open educational resource (OER) efforts by providing access to research for learning and teaching, and a range of actors including universities, their peak bodies, public research funding agencies and other organisations and networks that focus explicitly on OA are increasingly active in these areas in diverse ways. OA invites change to the status quo across the higher education sector and current momentum and vibrancy in this area suggests that rapid and significant changes in the OA landscape will continue into the foreseeable future. General practices, policies, infrastructure and cultural changes driven by the evolution of OA in Australian higher education are identified and discussed. The article concludes by raising several key questions for the future of OA research and open data policies and practices in Australia in the context of growing interest in OA internationally.”

URL : The evolution of open access to research and data in Australian higher education

Alternative URL : http://journals.uoc.edu/index.php/rusc/article/view/v11n3-picasso-phelan

Beyond open access: an examination of Australian academic publication behaviour

This study explored the publication behaviour of academics from Australian universities and how this impacted on the adoption of open access models of scholarly publishing. Using grounded theory as its methodology, the study developed theoretical models that identified publication practice. The study also indicated how this practice had been influenced by ongoing changes in government policy associated with research recognition. While the government policies aimed to improve Australian research quality, studies such as this thesis assist in determining the impact that changes made to research evaluation policies may have on the research community and research dissemination.

The study examined data collected through three methods: focus groups held with Australian academics and publishers, an online survey of academics from Australian universities and interviews with Australian academics and university based e-press managers. In total, two hundred and eighty-one participants contributed to this study, including twenty-three in-depth interviewees and thirteen focus group participants. The survey participants represented a cross section of the Australian university community, whilst the focus groups and interviews represented academics from two universities, one from the Group of Eight and the other from the Australian Technology Network.

The outcome of this study was a number of theoretical models that suggested that the changing policies associated with research recognition have narrowed the publication behaviour of the Australian academic community and that this could be to the detriment of the adoption of alternative models of scholarly publishing. The publication behaviour, which had a focus on tiered journal listings, resulted in a dissemination pattern that was primarily directed to the academy. This was of concern for disciplines that had a practitioner-based research focus. Such disciplines would benefit from open access dissemination.

The study also examined engagement with institutional repositories and highlighted the importance of mediation in populating the content of repositories. The process of permission-based mandates was supported as a means to develop repository content. Permission-based mandates allow academics to enter a non-exclusive agreement with their university or institution so that the university can manage copyright and repository submission processes on behalf of the academic. Academics can then focus on the process of publication, while mediators can manage copyright and the repository submission processes.

URL : http://researchbank.rmit.edu.au/view/rmit:160184