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In:  Guest Blog  

ScienceOpen Guest Blog Policy

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The ScienceOpen Blog welcomes Guest Posts from the Communities that we serve. If you have an idea for a post, please email Liz Allen (Moderator).

Blog basics: powered by WordPress. All posts and associated comments will be published if they meet acceptable standards (see Community Guidelines below).

Content license, attribution, third party content: all content is published under a CC-BY License which permits re-use, including commercial. Proper attribution is required for all third party content – please list the author or creator of content, the original source of the content and a statement of the license type. You alone are responsible for complying with applicable laws and for getting permission from the content owner as necessary. If you rely on fair use to justify use of third-party content, you alone are responsible for making sure your use constitutes actual fair use under the law.

Community guidelines: we don’t support content that: plagiarizes; defames others; name calls; attacks; threatens; uses profanity; promotes products and services.

ScienceOpen reserves the right to remove any content that violates these guidelines, to block repeat and/or egregious violators from posting, and to suspend accounts as we deem necessary

In:  Announcements  

Partnering the World Health Summit to expand access to global health research

WHS

ScienceOpen, the new Open Access (OA) research + publishing network, and the World Health Summit, the preeminent forum for addressing global health issues, are delighted to announce their strategic partnership.

The topical issue of climate change and health is top priority at this year’s Summit. As Dr Margaret Chan, WHO Director General said “the evidence is overwhelming: climate change endangers human health. Solutions exist and we need to act decisively to change this trajectory”. Other topics include Universal Health Coverage and Healthy Aging.

A clear signal that the global health community welcomes a more open conversation on these pivotal issues, has been the increase of OA to the scientific and medical literature as an ideal way of disseminating knowledge. Many of the speakers at the WHS 2014 are already publishing their findings in OA journals and are choosing to make research in this field freely available for everyone to read and re-use (with attribution) which:

  • Broadens the conversation with those in low income countries
  • Facilitates global research cooperation
  • Provides health policy makers with quality information
  • Helps clinicians and patients make better informed decisions

The new partners align around their shared vision that real and lasting change in global health is catalyzed through collaboration and open dialogue. “Only a global collaboration that unites academia, the private sector, politics and civil society can provide the key to solving the problems of health and health systems today and tomorrow “ explain the WHS Presidents 2014, Prof José Otávio Costa Auler Jr. and Prof Detlev Ganten.

The Summitt, which attracts 1200 participants and is to be held from October 19-22 at the German Federal Foreign Office in Berlin, was initiated in 2009 on the occasion of the 300th year anniversary of the Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin.

ScienceOpen, headquartered in Berlin (with offices in Boston and San Francisco, USA), has aggregated over 1.3 million OA articles from leading publishers from over 2 million networked authors which allows users unfettered accesss to medical and health knowledge from a variety of sources. It welcomes submissions of all types of content (Research Articles, Reviews, Posters etc.) from all disciplines and offers

In recognition of this exciting new partnership, ScienceOpen is open for submissions pertaining to the forthcoming World Health Summit which we are also privileged to be attending.

 

 

In:  Profiles  

Researcher #profilefatigue – what it is and why it’s exhausting!

Image credit: Arallyn, Flickr, CC BY
Image credit: Arallyn, Flickr, CC BY

Most of us, whether we are researchers or not, can intuitively grasp what “profile fatigue” is. For those who are thus afflicted, we don’t recommend the pictured Bromo Soda, even though it’s for brain fatigue. This is largely because it contained Bromide, which is chronically toxic and medications containing it were removed in the USA from 1975 (wow, fairly recent!).

Naturally, in the digital age, it’s important for researchers to have profiles and be associated with their work. Funding, citations and lots of other good career advancing benefits flow from this. And, it can be beneficial to showcase a broad range of output, so blogs, slide presentations, peer-reviewed publications, conference posters etc. are all fair game. It’s also best that a researcher’s work belongs uniquely to them, so profile systems need to solve for name disambiguation (no small undertaking!).

This is all well and good until you consider the number of profiles a researcher might have created at different sites already. To help us consider this, we put together this list.

Organization Status
ORCID Non-profit: independent, community driven
Google Scholar Search: Google
Researcher ID Publisher: Thomson Reuters
Scopus Author ID Publisher: Elsevier
Mendeley Publisher: Elsevier
Academia.edu Researcher Network: Academia.edu
ResearchGate Researcher Network: ResearchGate

The list shows that a researcher could have created (or have been assigned per SCOPUS) 7 “profiles” or more accurately, 7 online records of research contributions. That’s on top of those at their research institution and other organizations) and only one iD (helpfully shown in green at the top!) is run by an independent non-profit called ORCID.

Different from a profile, ORCID is a unique, persistent personal identifier a researcher uses as they publish, submit grants, upload datasets that connects them to information on other systems. But, not all other profile systems (sigh). Which leads us, once again, to the concept of “interoperability” which is one of the central arguments behind recent community disatissfaction over the new STM licenses which we have covered previously.

Put simply, if we all go off and do our own thing with licensing and profiling then we create more confusion and effort for researchers. Best to let organizations like Creative Commons and ORCID take care of making sure that everyone can play nicely in the sandbox (although they do appreciate community advocacy on these issues).

Interoperability is one good reason why ScienceOpen integrated our registration with ORCID and use their iD’s to provide researcher profiles on our site. We don’t do this because we think profiles are kinda neat, they are but they are also time consuming and tedious to prepare (especially 6 times!).

We did it because we are trying to improve peer-review which we believe should be done after publication by experts with at least 5 publications on their ORCID iD and we believe in minimizing researcher hassle. This is why our registration process is integrated with the creation of an ORCID iD, which could become pivotal for funders in the reaonably near future (so best for researchers to get on board with them now!).

So given that it seems likely that all researchers will need an ORCID iD (and boy it would be nice if they would get one by registering with us!), then what is also important is that all the sites listed in the above grid integrate with ORCID too and that hasn’t happened yet (you know who you are!). The others have done a nice job of integrating by all accounts.

In conclusion, publishers and other service providers need to remember that they serve the scientific community, not the other way around and this publisher would like to suggest that everyone in the grid please integrate with ORCID pronto!

In:  About SO  

ScienceOpen – making publishing easier. Why review?

Image credit: AJ Cann/Flickr, CC BY-SA
Image credit: AJ Cann/Flickr, CC BY-SA

Reviewing with ScienceOpen, the new OA research + publishing network, is a bit different from what researchers may have experienced elsewhere! To see for yourself, watch this short video on Post-Publication Peer Review.

Q. For busy researchers & physicians, time is short, so why bother to review for ScienceOpen?

A1. Firstly, because the current Peer Review system doesn’t work 

David Black, the Secretary General of the International Council for Science (ICSU) said in a recent ScienceOpen interview “Peer Review as a tool of evaluation for research is flawed.” Many others agree.

Here are our observations and what we are doing to ease the strain.

Anonymous Peer Review encourages disinhibition. Since the balance of power is also skewed, this can fuel unhelpful, even destructive, reviewer comments. At ScienceOpen, we only offer non-anonymous Post-Publication Peer Review.

Authors can suggest up to 10 people to review their article. Reviews of ScienceOpen articles and any of the 1.3mm other OA papers aggregated on our platform, are by named academics with minimally five publications on their ORCID ID which is our way of maintaining the standard of scientific discourse. We believe that those who have experienced Peer Review themselves should be more likely to understand the pitfalls of the process and offer constructive feedback to others.

Martin Suhm, Professor of Physical Chemistry, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany and one of our first authors said in a recent ScienceOpen interview “Post-Publication Peer Review will be an intriguing experience, certainly not without pitfalls, but worth trying”.

A2. Second, reviews receive a DOI so your contributions can be cited

We believe that scholarly publishing is not an end in itself, but the beginning of a dialogue to move research forward. In a move sure to please busy researchers tired of participating without recognition, each review receives a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) so that others can find and cite the analysis and the contribution becomes a registered part of the scientific debate.

All reviews require a four point assessment (using five stars) of the level of: importance, validity, completeness and comprehensibility and there’s space to introduce and summarize the material.

Should authors wish to make minor or major changes to their work in response to review feedback, then ScienceOpen offers Versioning. Versions are clearly visible online, the latest are presented first with prominent links to previous iterations. We maintain & display information about which version of an article the reviews and comments refer to, this allows readers to follow a link to an earlier version of the content to see the article history.

A3. Finally, because problems are more visible

When Peer Review is done in the open by named individuals, we believe it should be more constructive and issues will surface more quickly. The resolution of matters arising isn’t simpler or quicker because they are more obvious, but at least they can be seen and addressed.

Here’s a quick overview of ScienceOpen services:

  • Publishes ALL article types: Research, Reviews, Opinions, Posters etc
  • From ALL disciplines: science, medicine, the humanities and social science
  • Aggregates over 1.3 million OA articles from leading publishers
  • Publication within about a week from submission with DOI
  • Transparent Post-Publication Peer Review with DOI
  • Proofs, easy corrections and versioning
  • Article Metrics to track usage and impact
  • Compliant with all Funder OA mandates (CC BY)

Welcome to the next wave of Open Access Publishing. Join us today.

 

In:  About SO  

ScienceOpen – making publishing easier. Why publish?

Publishing with ScienceOpen, the new OA research + publishing network, is a bit different and quicker from what researchers may have experienced elsewhere! Here’s a short video that explains how we make publishing easier.

Q. For busy researchers & physicians, time is short, so why bother to publish with ScienceOpen?

A. So you can share your results quickly and get back to your research.

At ScienceOpen, we understand that the publishing process is all too often painful and time consuming. This picture demonstrates why rapid and informal web publishing plus Post-Publication Peer Review could well be the future!

Here’s a quick overview of ScienceOpen services:

  • Publishes ALL article types: Research, Reviews, Opinions, Posters etc
  • From ALL disciplines: science, medicine, the humanities and social science
  • Aggregates over 1.3 million OA articles from leading publishers
  • Publication within about a week from submission with DOI
  • Transparent Post-Publication Peer Review with DOI
  • Proofs, easy corrections and versioning
  • Article Metrics to track usage and impact
  • Compliant with all Funder OA mandates (CC BY)

ScienceOpen strives to offer services to researchers for a price ($800) that is significantly less than most OA journals. Full and partial fee waivers are available to those in need in low and middle income countries and in less well funded disciplines.

Welcome to the next wave of Open Access Publishing. Join us today.

 

 

 

 

In:  About SO  

ScienceOpen – making publishing easier. Why register? 

Registering with ScienceOpen, the new OA research + publishing network, is almost as easy as pushing this button. To see for yourself, watch this short video or just sign up now (it takes about the same length of time).

Q. For busy researchers & physicians, time is short, so why bother to spend it registering with ScienceOpen?

A. So you can be part of the conversation to move research forward. 

We’re one of the first to maintain the level of expert discussion on our platform by allocating roles and privileges (such as Peer Review) based on the number of publications listed on your ORCID iD.

Have five or more publications on your ORCID iD? You are an Expert or Scientific Member.

  • Review any of over 1.3 million OA articles on Science Open and get a DOI
  • Lead Group discussions about relevant OA articles, make a Collection and call for more submissions

Have one or more publication? You are a Member.

  • Comment on articles

No previous publishing history? Publish for the first time with us.

  • Authors can invite up to 10 experts to review their article
  • Non anonymous peer-review should result in more balanced and relevant feedback
  • Use workspaces to collaborate on any document, publish elsewhere if you’d prefer

Don’t want to register at all? A pity, but naturally you can still read and re-use over 1.3 million OA articles

  • Convenient to have multiple OA publishers on one platform

For those who are new to us and that’s pretty much everyone, here’s a quick overview of ScienceOpen services:

  • Publishes ALL article types: Research, Reviews, Opinions, Posters etc
  • From ALL disciplines: science, medicine, the humanities and social science
  • Aggregates over 1.3 million OA articles from leading publishers
  • Publication within about a week from submission with DOI
  • Transparent Post-Publication Peer Review with DOI
  • Proofs, easy corrections and versioning
  • Article Metrics to track usage and impact
  • Compliant with all Funder OA mandates (CC BY)

Welcome to the next wave of Open Access Publishing. Join us today.

In:  Societies  

Quick update on AAAS letter

Just posting this quick update because the discussion about the AAAS letter, the response of their CEO, and subsequent coverage in Times Higher Education is moving rapidly this morning. With many different time zones involved, it can be tricky to keep up for the few of us who occasionally like to sleep! Here’s a round-up for those on the West Coast who are just waking up to this or anyone who is interested.

As some of you may know, last week 115 people from the the Research and Open Access (OA) community (including some from ScienceOpen and our Boards) sent this letter to the AAAS to protest the pricing level and structure for the new OA journal Science Advances.

Science Advances has a new Twitter stream which has but one tweet:

A couple of things to point out here, Possibly in an effort not to give the open letter more publicity, the AAAS don’t say in the tweet what they are responding to (no mention of open letter or link) and neither do they say in the response. A quick read of the AAAS CEO response (who is Alan Leshner, also not named!), shows it to be a classic PR piece that copiously links to previous corporate (but it’s a non-profit member led organization) AAAS statements about Science Advances, but nowhere to the letter!

Thankfully, the AAAS CEO response does now have a link to the open letter, published at The Winnower, via a comment from Ernesto Priego, a Lecturer in Library Science at the Dept of Library and Information Science, City University, London.

Paul Jump, science and research reporter for Times Higher Education to whom the AAAS response is addressed, has today written an article entitled “Shock and derision as Kent Anderson named Science publisher” which does mention and link to the letter and clears up the confusion. However, it is also worth noting that although the article headline is true, the open letter itself doesn’t make mention of Kent Anderson and focuses on pricing and licensing. 

The team behind the open letter (Erin McKiernan and Jon Tennant plus others) are strategizing their response and I will update this post as the days (probably minutes!) unfold.

————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

The story unfolds:

New 1: 8/28 – the follow up email to  was published as a comment on the original letter. 

New 2: 8/30 – took AAAS a few days to come up with this “response” to the letter, an achingly funny corporate FAQ which doesn’t mention the original or the follow up letter and fails to address any community concerns. Hmm. verdict = lame.

New 3: 9/1 – over the weekend, community get a bit fed up with not being heard by AAAS (a non-profit member organization that is meant to Advance Science). Some prominent news outlets interview Jon Tennant and Erin McKiernan.  First result, this excellent article by New Statesman.

New 4: 9/3 – Second result, excellent article by The Conversation.

In:  Societies  

Open Letter to the Society for Neuroscience

Dear Society for Neuroscience,

This is an open letter concerning the recent launch of the new open access journal, eNeuro.

We welcome the diversification of journal choices for authors looking for open access venues, as well as the willingness of eNeuro to accept negative results and study replications, its membership in the Neuroscience Peer Review Consortium, the publication of peer review syntheses alongside articles, and the requirement that molecular data be publicly available.

As strong supporters of open access, we welcome the commitment of the Society to making the works it publishes freely and openly available. However, we are concerned with several aspects of the specific approach, and outline herein a number of suggestions that would allow eNeuro to provide the full benefits of open access to the communities the journal aims to serve.  Continue reading “Open Letter to the Society for Neuroscience”  

Welcome to author Nitika Pant Pai – impassioned OA advocate!

Today, we’re pleased to announce a new article entitled Head to head comparisons in performance of CD4 point–of-care assays: A Bayesian meta-analysis (2000-2013) by multiple award-winning researcher Nitika Pant Pai, Assistant Professor at McGill University in the Department of Medicine and a Scientist at the MUHC Research Institute and her co-authors Samantha WilkinsonTiago ChiavegattiBenedicte Nauche and Lawrence Joseph.

To mark the publication of her first ScienceOpen article, Nitika, who is also a member of our Editorial Board, prepared this video which is compelling both for what she says and how she says it – with a great deal of commitment!

Just 35 seconds into the video, a big smile spreads over Nitika’s face as she starts to talk about Open Access (OA) and her fist goes up as she says “more power to Open Access”! From then on, she discusses her real-life experiences of not having access to journals when she was training in India, wanting to spare others the same experience and why OA was therefore “the jewel for me”. Nitika’s enthusiasm for OA is infectious and energizing, she calls it a “pure movement”, says it is a way to “give back to the community” and believes it is going to permeate all sections of society, helping knowledge to spread. Continue reading “Welcome to author Nitika Pant Pai – impassioned OA advocate!”  

In:  Societies  

Open letter to the AAAS

Image credit: justinc, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA
Image credit: justinc, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA

Dear AAAS,

This is an open letter concerning the recent launch of the new open access journal, Science Advances. In addition to the welcome diversification in journal choices for authors looking for open access venues, there are many positive aspects of Science Advances: its broad STEM scope, its interest in cross-disciplinary research, and the offering of fee waivers. While we welcome the commitment of the Association to open access, we are also deeply concerned with the specific approach. Herein, we outline a number of suggestions that are in line with both the current direction that scholarly publishing is taking and the needs expressed by the open access community, which this journal aims to serve. Continue reading “Open letter to the AAAS”