Open Access+ Service: reframing library support to take research outputs to non-academic audiences

Author: Scott Taylor

The University of Manchester Library has established a key role in facilitating scholarly discourse through its mediated open access (OA) services, but has little track record in intentionally taking OA research outputs to non-academic audiences.

This article outlines recent exploratory steps the Library has taken to convince researchers to fully exploit this part of the scholarly communication chain. Driving developments within this service category is a belief that despite the recent rise in OA, the full public benefit of research outputs is often not being realized as many papers are written in inaccessibly technical language.

Recognizing our unique position to help authors reach broader audiences with simpler expressions of their work, we have evolved our existing managed OA services to systematically share plain-English summaries of OA papers via Twitter.

In parallel, we have taken steps to ensure that our commercial analytics tools work harder to identify and reach the networked communities that form around academic disciplines in the hope that these simpler expressions of research will be more likely to diffuse beyond these networks.

URL : Open Access+ Service: reframing library support to take research outputs to non-academic audiences

DOI : http://doi.org/10.1629/uksg.499

Enhancing Content Discovery of Open Repositories: An Analytics-Based Evaluation of Repository

Author : George Macgregor

Ensuring open repositories fulfil the discovery needs of both human and machine users is of growing importance and essential to validate the continued relevance of open repositories to users, and as nodes within open scholarly communication infrastructure.

Following positive preliminary results reported elsewhere, this submission analyses the longer-term impact of a series of discovery optimization approaches deployed on an open repository.

These approaches were designed to enhance content discovery and user engagement, thereby improving content usage. Using Strathprints, the University of Strathclyde repository as a case study, this article will briefly review the techniques and technical changes implemented and evaluate the impact of these changes by studying analytics relating to web impact, COUNTER usage and web traffic over a 4-year period.

The principal contribution of the article is to report on the insights this longitudinal dataset provides about repository visibility and discoverability, and to deliver robust conclusions which can inform similar strategies at other institutions. Analysis of the unique longitudinal dataset provides persuasive evidence that specific enhancements to the technical configuration of a repository can generate substantial improvements in its content discovery potential and ergo its content usage, especially over several years.

In this case study, COUNTER usage grew by 62%. Increases in Google ‘impressions’ (266%) and ‘clicks’ (104%) were a notable finding too, with high levels of statistical significance found in the correlation between clicks and usage ( t=14.30,df=11,p<0.0005 ).

Web traffic to Strathprints from Google and Google Scholar (GS) was found to increase significantly with growth on some metrics exceeding 1300%. Although some of these results warrant further research, the article nevertheless demonstrates the link between repository optimization and the need for open repositories to assume a proactive development path, especially one that prioritises web impact and discovery.

URL : Enhancing Content Discovery of Open Repositories: An Analytics-Based Evaluation of Repository

Original location : https://www.mdpi.com/2304-6775/8/1/9

How society publishers can accelerate their transition to open access and align with Plan S

Authors : Alicia Wise, Lorraine Estelle

Wellcome, UK Research and Innovation, and the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers commissioned Information Power Ltd. to undertake a project to support society publishers to accelerate their transition to open access (OA) in alignment with Plan S and the wider move to accelerate immediate OA.

This project is part of a range of activities that cOAlition S partners are taking forward to support the implementation of Plan S principles. The objective of this project was to explore with learned societies a range of potential strategies and business models through which they could adapt and thrive under Plan S.

We consulted with society publishers through interviews, surveys, and workshops about the 27 business models and strategies identified during the project.

We also surveyed library consortia about their willingness to support society publishers to make the transition to OA. Our key finding is that transformative agreements emerge as the most promising model because they offer a predictable, steady funding stream.

We also facilitated pilot transformative agreement negotiations between several society publishers and library consortia. These pilots and a workshop of consortium representatives and society publishers informed the development of an OA transformative agreement toolkit.

Our conclusion is that society publishers should consider all the business models this project has developed and should not automatically equate OA with article publication charges.

URL : How society publishers can accelerate their transition to open access and align with Plan S

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1002/leap.1272

Research Data Management in a Cultural Heritage Organisation

Author : Tom Drysdale

Research is a core function of cultural heritage organisations. Inevitably, the undertaking of research by galleries, libraries, archives and museums (the GLAM sector) leads to the creation of vast quantities of research data.

Yet despite growing recognition that research data must be managed if it is to be exploited effectively, and in spite of increasing understanding of research data management practices and needs, particularly in the higher education sector, knowledge of research data management in cultural heritage organisations remains extremely limited.

This paper represents an attempt to address the limited awareness of research data management in the cultural heritage sector. It presents the results of a data management audit conducted at Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) in 2018.

The study reveals that research data management at HRP is underdeveloped, while highlighting some causes for optimism.

The results of the study are compared to the results of similar studies conducted in UK higher education institutions (HEIs), highlighting the many discrepancies in the ways that research data is managed at HRP and in the HE sector.

Recognition of these differences and similarities, it is argued, is necessary for the development of better research data management practices and tools for the heritage sector.

URL : Research Data Management in a Cultural Heritage Organisation

DOI : https://doi.org/10.2218/ijdc.v14i1.647

The Impact of Open Access on Teaching—How Far Have We Come?

Authors : Elizabeth Gadd, Chris Morrison, Jane Secker

This article seeks to understand how far the United Kingdom higher education (UK HE) sector has progressed towards open access (OA) availability of the scholarly literature it requires to support courses of study.

It uses Google Scholar, Unpaywall and Open Access Button to identify OA copies of a random sample of articles copied under the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) HE Licence to support teaching. The quantitative data analysis is combined with interviews of, and a workshop with, HE practitioners to investigate four research questions.

Firstly, what is the nature of the content being used to support courses of study? Secondly, do UK HE establishments regularly incorporate searches for open access availability into their acquisition processes to support teaching? Thirdly, what proportion of content used under the CLA Licence is also available on open access and appropriately licenced? Finally, what percentage of content used by UK HEIs under the CLA Licence is written by academics and thus has the potential for being made open access had there been support in place to enable this?

Key findings include the fact that no interviewees incorporated OA searches into their acquisitions processes. Overall, 38% of articles required to support teaching were available as OA in some form but only 7% had a findable re-use licence; just 3% had licences that specifically permitted inclusion in an ‘electronic course-pack’.

Eighty-nine percent of journal content was written by academics (34% by UK-based academics). Of these, 58% were written since 2000 and thus could arguably have been made available openly had academics been supported to do so.

URL : The Impact of Open Access on Teaching—How Far Have We Come?

DOI : https://doi.org/10.3390/publications7030056

Developing a model for university presses

Authors : Megan Taylor, Kathrine S H Jensen

This article presents a model for developing a university press based around three guiding principles and six key stages of the publishing process, with associated activities.

The model is designed to be applicable to a range of business models, including subscription, open access and hybrid. The guiding principles, publishing stages and strategic points all constitute the building blocks necessary to implement and maintain a sustainable university press.

At the centre of the model there are three interconnected main guiding principles: strategic alignment, stakeholder relationships and demonstrating impact.

The publishing process outlined in the outer ring of the model is made up of six sections: editorial, production, dissemination, preservation, communication and analytics.

These sections were based on the main stages that a journal article or monograph goes through from proposal or commissioning stage through to publication and beyond.

The model highlights the overall importance of working in partnership and building relationships as key to developing and maintaining a successful press.

URL : Developing a model for university presses

DOI : http://doi.org/10.1629/uksg.469

The advantages of UK Biobank’s open access strategy for health research

Authors : Megan Conroy, Jonathan Sellors, Mark Effingham, Thomas J. Littlejohns, Chris Boultwood, Lorraine Gillions, Cathie L.M. Sudlow, Rory Collins, Naomi E. Allen

Ready access to health research studies is becoming more important as researchers, and their funders, seek to maximise the opportunities for scientific innovation and health improvements.

Large‐scale population‐based prospective studies are particularly useful for multidisciplinary research into the causes, treatment and prevention of many different diseases. UK Biobank has been established as an open‐access resource for public health research, with the intention of making the data as widely available as possible in an equitable and transparent manner.

Access to UK Biobank’s unique breadth of phenotypic and genetic data has attracted researchers worldwide from across academia and industry. As a consequence, it has enabled scientists to perform world‐leading collaborative research.

Moreover, open access to an already deeply characterized cohort has encouraged both public and private sector investment in further enhancements to make UK Biobank an unparalleled resource for public health research and an exemplar for the development of open access approaches for other studies.

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1111/joim.12955