Evaluating big deal journal bundles


“Large commercial publishers sell bundled online subscriptions to their entire list of academic journals at prices significantly lower than the sum of their á la carte prices. Bundle prices differ drastically between institutions, but they are not publicly posted. The data that we have collected enable us to compare the bundle prices charged by commercial publishers with those of nonprofit societies and to examine the types of price discrimination practiced by commercial and nonprofit journal publishers. This information is of interest to economists who study monopolist pricing, librarians interested in making efficient use of library budgets, and scholars who are interested in the availability of the work that they publish.”

URL : http://www.econ.ucsb.edu/~tedb/Journals/PNAS-2014-Bergstrom-1403006111.pdf

Quality of author guidelines of journals in the biomedical and physical sciences


“To assess quantitatively the completeness and clarity of author guidelines of international English-language journals in the biomedical and physical sciences, we randomly sampled 80 journals for which author guidelines were available online in English. The guidelines were reviewed for completeness and clarity in addressing ‘aims and scope,’ ‘submission and post-submission processes,’ ‘formatting instructions,’ ‘ethical requirements,’ and ‘authorship,’ and were subjectively assessed as being complete (score, 1) or incomplete (0), and clear (1) or unclear (0). Scores were represented as mean percentages. No journal scored 100% for completeness and clarity. ‘Formatting instructions’ was the most complete and clear category, and ‘authorship,’ the least complete and clear category. Biomedical science journals were more complete and clear in all categories, except ‘authorship,’ compared to physical science journals. While author guidelines of many English-language journals of biomedical and physical sciences adequately address some essential aspects, they currently do not provide all necessary information as clearly as possible. ”

URL : http://www.editage.com/insights/quality-of-author-guidelines-of-journals-in-the-biomedical-and-physical-sciences

The dark side of Open Access in Google and Google Scholar: the case of Latin-American repositories


Since repositories are a key tool in making scholarly knowledge open access, determining their presence and impact on the Web is essential, particularly in Google (search engine par excellence) and Google Scholar (a tool increasingly used by researchers to search for academic information). The few studies conducted so far have been limited to very specific geographic areas (USA), which makes it necessary to find out what is happening in other regions that are not part of mainstream academia, and where repositories play a decisive role in the visibility of scholarly production. The main objective of this study is to ascertain the presence and visibility of Latin American repositories in Google and Google Scholar through the application of page count and visibility indicators. For a sample of 137 repositories, the results indicate that the indexing ratio is low in Google, and virtually nonexistent in Google Scholar; they also indicate a complete lack of correspondence between the repository records and the data produced by these two search tools. These results are mainly attributable to limitations arising from the use of description schemas that are incompatible with Google Scholar (repository design) and the reliability of web indicators (search engines). We conclude that neither Google nor Google Scholar accurately represent the actual size of open access content published by Latin American repositories; this may indicate a non-indexed, hidden side to open access, which could be limiting the dissemination and consumption of open access scholarly literature.

URL : http://arxiv-web3.library.cornell.edu/abs/1406.4331

Seeking Impact and Visibility: Scholarly Communication in Southern Africa


“African scholarly research is relatively invisible for three primary reasons:

  1. While research production on the continent is growing in absolute terms, it is falling in comparative terms (especially as other Southern countries such as China ramp up research production), reducing its relative visibility.
  2. Traditional metrics of visibility (especially the ISI/WoS Impact Factor) which measure only formal scholar-to-scholar outputs (journal articles and books) fail to make legible a vast amount of African scholarly production, thus underestimating the amount of research activity on the continent.
  3. Many African universities do not take a strategic approach to scholarly communication, nor utilise appropriate information and communications technologies (ICTs) and Web 2.0 technologies to broaden the reach of their scholars’ work or curate it for future generations, thus inadvertently minimising the impact and visibility of African research.”

“To optimise scholarly communication at Southern African universities, there are four stakeholders that can play a dynamic role in improving universities’ dissemination activity: national governments, university administrations, university academics and research funding agencies. Each of these groups contributes to research and communication practices at the institution, thereby impacting the potential visibility of Southern African scholars’ research outputs. In this chapter, we provide recommendations
tailored to each of these stakeholders with a focus on enhancing research production, open dissemination and regional collaborative opportunities.”

URL : Seeking Impact and Visibility

Alternative URL : http://www.africanminds.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/9781920677510-content2.pdf

EPISCIENCES – an overlay publication platform


This paper delineates the main characteristics of the Episciences platform, an environment for overlay peer-reviewing that complements existing publication repositories, designed by the Centre pour la Communication Scientifique directe (CCSD ) service unit. We describe the main characteristics of the platform and present the first experiment of launching two journals in the computer science domain onto it. Finally, we address a series of open questions related to the actual changes in editorial models (open submission, open peer- review, augmented publication) that such a platform is likely to raise, as well as some hints as to the underlying business model.

URL : http://hal.inria.fr/hal-01002815

Impact of assessment criteria on publication behaviour: the case of communication research in Spain


Introduction: This paper outlines the evolution of Spanish production in the area of communication research over the last seventeen years. It analyses whether the consolidation of the existing systems of assessment of scientific activity have been mirrored by an increase in the output of Spanish authors in journals indexed by the Social Sciences Citation Index.

Method:  A bibliometric approach to the subject matter has been selected.  We have analysed indicators such as institutional and individual productivity, models of publishing and dynamics of co-operation (intra-and inter-institutional, national and international).

Analysis: This method has been applied to thirty-four journals included in the communication category of the Social Sciences Citation Index. To ensure consistency in the data collected, only journals that have remained in this database over the seventeen years covered by the research, from 1994 to 2010, have been selected.

Results: Results reveal that the output of Spanish researchers in communication has increased significantly over five years, from forty-eight papers in 1994-2005, to eighty-two for the period 2006-2010.

Conclusions: The increase coincides with the creation in 2002 of National Quality and Accreditation Evaluation Agency (ANECA) whose assessment criteria give priority to publication in journals indexed by the Social Sciences Citation Index.”

URL : http://www.informationr.net/ir/19-2/paper613.html

Qu’est-ce qu’une archive de chercheur ?


“Au cours de sa carrière, un chercheur est amené à produire, consulter et conserver différents types de documents. Carnets, agendas, brouillons de toutes formes, livres annotés forment bien souvent la grande partie des fonds d’archives disponibles. La prise en compte et l’étude de ces documents témoignent d’une activité prenante, mais permettent surtout de saisir les évolutions, les tâtonnements et les manières de faire propres à tel ou tel chercheur. En décidant d’explorer certaines pratiques concrètes qui se matérialisent dans les archives, Jean-François Bert met l’accent sur l’aspect ordinaire de l’activité savante afin de comprendre le processus de la recherche, dans sa singularité et souvent sa grande complexité. Cet ouvrage, synthétique et richement documenté, donne les outils essentiels à une meilleure compréhension et à un usage profondément renouvelé des archives de chercheur.”

URL : http://books.openedition.org/oep/438