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Libraries and Open Journal Systems: Hosting and facilitating the creation of Open Access scholarship

There is a growing availability of free tools and software for academic publishing. How might libraries leverage existing platforms? Anna R. Craft describes one experience of an academic library hosting locally-produced open access journals through Open Journals Systems (OJS). But even “free” software is not without costs in relation to time and expertise. Care should be taken in facilitating a supportive environment to meet an institution’s journal-hosting needs.  Read more…


How to switch quickly to diamond open access: The best journals are free for authors and readers

Posted on by Martin Haspelmath

The conventional wisdom among experts is that open access (OA) publication is better in all respects: Publications are not hidden behind paywalls, authors get more citations for their work, and results of publicly funded research are available to the public. This has been widely known for over 12 years, but not much has been happening. Some actors are frustrated, such as Ralf Schimmer, vice-director of the Max Planck Society’s MPDL: He notes that despite all the pro-OA activities at universities and science organizations, the open access movement is stagnating. While one sixth of all publications is open access by open access, the clear majority for subscription seems to be stable.

What explains this strange stability, which defies the politicians’ hopes and the experts’ recommendations? The OA experts do not seem to be interested in finding out.

But the explanation is easy: The main actors are not suffering, so they have no particular incentive to change it. Publishers make good profits with their subscription model, and scientists depend on the publishers for their careers, because the publishers own the prestigious labels. The scientists know that open access is better in principle, but their careers (and funding prospects) are more important, and they manage to access the most relevant research via para-publication channels (personal connections, Academia.edu, etc.). Read more…

The Metric Tide – Report of the Independent Review of the Role of Metrics in Research Assessment and Management

Metrics evoke a mixed reaction from the research community. A commitment to using data and evidence to inform decisions makes many of us sympathetic, even enthusiastic, about the prospect of granular, real-time analysis of our own activities. If we as a sector can’t take full advantage of the possibilities of big data, then who can?
Yet we only have to look around us, at the blunt use of metrics such as journal impact factors, h-indices and grant income targets to be reminded of the pitfalls. Some of the most precious qualities of academic culture resist simple quantification, and individual indicators can struggle to do justice to the richness and plurality of our research. Too often, poorly designed evaluation criteria are “dominating minds, distorting behaviour and determining careers.”

At their worst, metrics can contribute to what Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, calls a “new barbarity” in our universities.  Read more…


Open Access and Research Data management: Horizon 2020 and Beyond in Ireland

In April of this year University College Cork (UCC) hosted a 2-day training event focusing on Open Access Data in Horizon 2020. The event was sponsored by FOSTER and organized jointly by UCC Boole Library and Repository Network Ireland.

Day one was aimed at researchers and others who were interested in developing Horizon 2020 proposals.

The two day event was a great success, introducing some people to the concept of Open Access and Open Data while also providing plenty of food for thought for those of us involved in the support of researchers and management of services and infrastructure.

All presentations can be found on the FOSTER website on the event page.

Read more…

Data Management Plan Resources

Oregon State University (OSU) LibGuide, provide guidance and support for all aspects of the data lifecycle, from planning your data management strategy during the proposal phase till the conclusion of your project, this service is free of charge and they will even partner with you to help you with the proposals and projects. Read more …

Guidelines for developing Institutional Repository

THIS WAS BLOG BY Shamprasad Pujar, Mumbai, India. Commonwealth Professional Fellow-2008 at University of Sussex, UK.

I think, it is still a challenge for many Library and Information Science (LIS) professionals to understand the nuances of digital library or institutional repository (IR) development using open source software like DSpace. They can now have a sigh of relief as Stellenbosch University library has made available ‘IR-Guide‘ , which provides step-by-step practical guidelines in developing an IR targeting academic institutes situated in developing countries. This useful document has been written by Mr Hilton Gibson, System Administrator at Stellenbosch University Library Services, Stellenbosch, South Africa. I am sure this guide will be of much use to LIS professionals.

The full text of the guide is available at: http://scholar.sun.ac.za/handle/10019.1/79321

Original blog

White House Ditches University Rankings, Launches New Website To Offer Open Data To Help Students Choose Their College

In a bid to increase the number of citizens who are college degree holders and can help boost the U.S. economy, the White House is introducing a new tool to help students and families search for the ideal college.  With this new tool, an individual can assess higher education institutions based on a variety of factors, including the size and location of schools and also the types of programs or degrees offered. Moreover, the site presents comprehensive and reliable data related to the college’s student outcomes, which include the student debts of graduates, earnings of students, and repayment rates of borrowers.

By launching the website, reports say, Washington seems to be abandoning efforts to create a system that will give ratings to the country’s colleges and universities. The primary objective of the original plan was to shame schools with low ratings.

This rating system of the government was opposed by various institutions, saying it could allow some institutions to prioritize money-making degrees, such as accounting, over courses related to history, philosophy, and others.  Read more…

The presence of High-impact factor Open Access Journals in Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine (STEM) disciplines

The present study means to establish to what extent high-quality open access journals are available as an outlet for publication, by examining their distribution in different scientific disciplines, including the distribution of those journals without article processing charges. The study is based on a systematic comparison between the journals included in the DOAJ, and the journals indexed in the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) Science edition 2013, released by Thomson Reuters.

The impact factor of Open Access (OA) journals was lower than those of other journals by a small but statistically significant amount. Open access journals are present in the upper quartile (by impact factor) of 85 out of 176 (48.8%) categories examined. There were no OA journals with an Impact Factor in only 16 categories (9%). Read more…

Who are you? Recognising researchers with ORCID identifiers

The Wellcome Trust are happy to announce that they are about to start mandating ORCID as part of their grant application process. Starting in August 2015, they will ask all applicants to provide an ORCID iD when they sign up with their grant application system.

The simplicity of a single profile, however, belies its true power: as plumbing. By allocating and centralising the identities of researchers, systems which previously could not exchange flows of data now can. By moving from full names to unique identifiers (referring to Dr Craig Roberts as 0000-0002-9641-6101, rather than “C. Roberts”) different interested parties can start reliably talking about the same people, which is a vital first step toward any deeper understanding of researchers, artists, and their activities.

Read more…

Videos and slides from OCLC Research Evolving Scholarly Record Workshop in San Francisco now available

Outputs from the Evolving Scholarly Record and the Evolving Stewardship Ecosystem San Francisco workshop are now available. View the agenda on the event page for links to videos, slides and photos from the workshop, and also view the video playlist on YouTube.

This was the fourth and final workshop in the series of four Evolving Scholarly Record workshops. Built on the framework presented in the OCLC Research report, The Evolving Scholarly Record, these workshops explored the boundaries of the scholarly record and the curation roles of various stakeholders. Open access policies, funder requirements, and new venues for scholarly communication are blurring the roles of the various stakeholders, including commercial publishers, governmental entities, and universities. The impact of changes in digital scholarship requires a collective effort to insure the integrity of the scholarly record

Workshop participants explored the responsibilities of research libraries, data archives, and other stewards of research output—and identified new alliances that should be forged to create a reliable ecosystem for preserving the scholarly record and making it accessible.  Read more…

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