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ScienceOpen joins forces with the Open Library of Humanities

It’s been a great week for us at ScienceOpen! In time for the Frankfurt Book Fair, we were happy to announce a new partnership with PeerJ to help promote Computer Science research. We’re happy now to announce another new partnership with the Open Library of Humanities (OLH), a new publishing platform the Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS).

You can read the full press release here, find the featured journals here, and discover and filter all OLH content here. We’re very excited by this new partnership, as it helps continue our trend of breaking down barriers between ‘STEM’ and ‘HSS’ research by integrating it all together in one unified platform.

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Professor Martin Eve, co-founder of the OLH, said: “In the digital environment in which humanities research now finds itself, discoverability is key. It is vitally important that the ‘signal’ of solid research is not lost amid the ‘noise’ of the World Wide Web. Our new partnership with ScienceOpen is just one of several initiatives in which we are participating that will amplify the humanities research that we publish. Finally, we think it is important to counter the destructive in-fighting of a ‘sciences vs humanities’ culture. By participating in ScienceOpen’s indexing, OLH research will sit alongside that of our colleagues working in the natural and social sciences.”

Featured journals from the OLH include:

  1. ORBIT: A Journal of American Literature
  2. ASIANetwork Exchange: A Journal for Asian Studies in the Liberal Arts
  3. The Comics Grid: Journal of Comics Scholarship
  4. And of course, the Open Library of Humanities itself

Some of the more eye-catching research articles are:

  • When the Zombies Came for Our Children: Exploring Posthumanism in Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead (link)

    • “..this essay explores The Walking Dead’s psychologization of childhood as its narrative moves away from a satirical construction of the zombie apocalypse into the inquiry of contemporary (in)humanity.”
  •  Analysis of Motions in Comic Book Cover Art: Using Pictorial Metaphors (link)

    • “How are literal and metaphorical pictorial devices used in comic book cover art?”
  • ‘Graphic Medicine’ as a Mental Health Information Resource: Insights from Comics Producers (link)

    • “This paper suggests that comics producers need to make a concerted effort to reach academia, and academia – including information professionals – need to embrace new types of material to enhance teaching.”
  • Opening the Black Box of Scholarly Communication Funding: A Public Data Infrastructure for Financial Flows in Academic Publishing (link)

    • “We conclude that obtaining a more joined up picture of financial flows is vital as a means for researchers, institutions and others to understand and shape changes to the sociotechnical systems that underpin scholarly communication.”

Open Science Stars: Ernesto Priego

We’re continuing our series on highlighting diverse perspectives in the vast field of ‘open science’. The last post in this series with Iara Vidal highlighted the opportunities of using altmetrics, as well as insight into scholarly publishing in Brazil. This week, Ernesto Priego talks with us about problems with the scholarly publishing system that led him to start his own journal, The Comics Grid.

There was no real reason to not start your own journal as an academic, to regain control of our own work and to create, disseminate and engage with scholarship in a faster, more transparent, fairer way.

Hi Ernesto! Thanks for joining us here. Could you start off by letting us know a little bit about your background?

I was born in Mexico City. I am Mexican and I have British nationality too. I studied English Literature at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) where I also taught and was part of various research projects. I came to the UK to do a master’s in critical theory at UEA Norwich and a PhD in Information Studies at University College London. I currently teach Library and Information Science at City University London.

When did you first hear about open access and open science? What were your initial thoughts?

I cannot recall exactly. I think I first encountered the concept of ‘open access’ via Creative Commons. I was a keen blogger between 1999 and 2006, and I remember that around 2002 I first came across the concept of the ‘commons’. I think it was through Lawrence Lessig that I really got interested into how scholarly communications were incredibly restrictive in comparison to the ideas being discussed by the Free Culture movement. Lessig’s Free Culture (2004) changed things for me. (For more background I recently talked to Mike Taylor about why open access means so much to me in this interview).

We need to think about the greater good, not just about ourselves as individuals.

You run your own journal, The Comics Grid – what was the motivation behind this?

Realising how difficult and expensive it was to access paywalled research got me quite frustrated with scholarly publishing. When I was doing my PhD I just could not understand why academics were stuck with a largely cumbersome and counter-intuitive system. The level of friction was killing my soul (it still does). It just seemed to me (now I understand better the larger issues) there was no real reason to not start your own journal as an academic, to regain control of our own work and to create, disseminate and engage with scholarship in a faster, more transparent, fairer way. I’ve said before that often scholarly publishing feels like that place where academic content goes to die: the end of the road. I feel publishing should be a point of departure, not the end.

Credit: Ernesto Priego
Credit: Ernesto Priego

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