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Reviewer under review: Prof. Rolf Georg Beutel

Best wishes for the New Year 2019! Last month we bid farewell to 2018 by putting our topical researcher-led collections in focus and organizing a prize draw for an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet for researchers reviewing any paper on ScienceOpen in December. Today we would like to thank everyone who participated in the drawing and are pleased to announce the winner: Prof. Rolf Georg Beutel, Friedrich-Schiller-Universitat Jena (Jena, Thüringen).

Prof. Beutel is editor of the collection ‘Coleoptera’, a comprehensive overview of over 9,000 research articles covering this immensely diverse group. This ScienceOpen collection goes beyond the traditional fields of taxonomy and morphology, and integrates an increasing number of open access records. Curated by an evolutionary biologist who considers himself primarily a systematist, the collection covers multiple lines of research, such as phylogeny, classification, genetics, and physiology. ‘Coleoptera’ is an indispensable tool in biodiversity research and provides an essential reference system for studies in other fields. Evolutionary biology of Coleoptera relates to topics such as physiological and genetic backgrounds of feeding habits or reproductive biology, making it an exciting group to study. This is especially true in our “age of phylogenomics”, when rapidly growing molecular data opens new fascinating perspectives in the research on beetles and other organisms.

Continue reading “Reviewer under review: Prof. Rolf Georg Beutel”  

Submit an article review and win an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet!

To celebrate the winter holidays and reward one lucky researcher, we would like to announce a prize draw to win an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet this month! To participate, all you need to do is review an article on ScienceOpen before the end of December and we will automatically consider you for the drawing.

An article review on ScienceOpen functions like a book review – it should help readers to understand the strengths and weaknesses of an interpretation or a data set. As an expert, you can review any article in your field across 49 million article records on our platform. Reviewing requires an ORCID and 5 publications. Interested in reviewing an article but don’t have 5 publications linked to your ORCID? Contact us! Your review will receive a Crossref DOI and can be linked to your ORCID publication record. Continue reading “Submit an article review and win an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet!”  

Publish your Preprint at ScienceOpen

Image credit: Fotolia

You can now publish your preprint directly to ScienceOpen. The discovery platform ScienceOpen will put your work in context and open it up to review with a wide range of author-mediated peer review tools.

Preprints, first draft research manuscripts, have existed almost as long as the Internet. Scientists have been taking advantage of online communication to speed up research for almost 3 decades. ScienceOpen understands the importance of allowing researchers to openly share their results with the scientific community at an early stage in their research. The advantage for researchers is that they get early feedback from peers but can still publish the final version in most peer-reviewed journals of their choosing. To support researchers in fully utilizing the benefits of preprint publishing, ScienceOpen is pleased to launch open and free preprint publishing on our platform! With this beta service, anyone can now upload, publish, and promote their preprint using a free and simple interface with access to a full suite of tools for peer review, constructive discussion through comments, and usage and impact tracking.

We have supported the essential role of preprints in speeding up science from the beginning by integrating arXiv preprints on the platform. Records for over 27,000 bioRxiv preprints in our discovery environment followed suit, along with the capacity to add records from other preprint serves such as Preprints.org, PeerJ Preprints, ChemRxiv, and Open Science Framework repositories. Given our belief in the benefits of preprints in advancing science, it seemed only logical to develop a new feature that will enable all researchers to take advantage of preprints in scholarly research and communications. Continue reading “Publish your Preprint at ScienceOpen”  

Diverse Approaches to Peer Review

Portrait of Albert Einstein in a museum. Source: pixabay.com

Peer Review Week, Sep 10-15, 2018

Peer Review Week is a global event celebrating the role of peer review in maintaining scientific quality. This year marks the event’s fourth anniversary of bringing together researchers, institutions, and organizations committed to the message that good peer review is crucial to scholarly communications. This year Peer Review Week on the topic of diversity aims:

  • To emphasize the central role peer review plays in scholarly communication
  • To showcase the work of editors and reviewers
  • To share research and advance best practices
  • To highlight the latest innovation and applications.
    (Source: https://peerreviewweek.wordpress.com/)

Although peer review itself is not as young as the week-long event organized in its celebration, it is still a relatively new invention. Albert Einstein published his original papers in non-peer-reviewed German journals through 1933, most famously in the Annalen der Physik. Max Planck, one of the journal’s editors of the time, described his editorial philosophy as:

To shun much more the reproach of having suppressed strange opinions than that of having been too gentle in evaluating them.

After moving to the US, Einstein was so shocked that his paper submitted to the Physical Review in 1936 was met with negative criticism that he decided not to publish with them at all. Ironically, the paper in question hypothesized that gravitational waves do not exist. In retrospect, peer review saved Einstein the controversy and the embarrassment that would have ensued if he had published his original article. Continue reading “Diverse Approaches to Peer Review”  

In:  About SO  

What can a Researcher do on ScienceOpen?

Image by Steve Rainwater, Flickr, CC BY-SA

ScienceOpen provides researchers with a wide range of tools to support their research – all for free. Here is a short checklist to make sure you are getting the most of the technological infrastructure and content that we have to offer. What can a researcher do on ScienceOpen?

Discover

  • Multi-dimensional search in millions of article records for quick orientation: Filter your search by 18 filters including open access, preprint, author, affiliation, keyword, content type, source, and more. Sort your results by Altmetric score, citations, date, usage, and rating. Use the article Collections by other researchers to help narrow your search.
  • Export search results in EndNote, BibTex, and Reference Manager (RIS) formats for easy integration with other reference management systems. Up to 200 citations exported at a time.
  • Save your search to find the newest articles in your field with one click. ScienceOpen is adding thousands of articles to the database daily.
  • Bookmark the articles you are interested to explore later.

Continue reading “What can a Researcher do on ScienceOpen?”  

Speeding up Research with Preprints

Rolf Dietrich Brecher, Speeding up, Flickr, CC-BY SA

The “Preprint” allows researchers to openly share their results with peers at an early stage and still publish the final version in the peer-reviewed journal of their choice. From the start, ScienceOpen has supported preprints and their essential role in speeding up science by integrating arXiv preprints in the physical sciences on the platform. We now include over 1.4 million arXiv records on ScienceOpen. In our new release we have added even more preprints to the mix, with a focus on the biomedical sciences.

Preprints in the biological and medical sciences were kickstarted by the founding of bioRxiv in 2013, and by the advocacy organization ASAPBio in 2015 and have taken off rapidly since then. Now on ScienceOpen we have added records for over 20,000 bioRxiv preprints to our discovery environment, together with the capacity to include records from other preprint servers such as PeerJ Preprints, Preprints.org and ChemRxiv. Up next are all the great preprint servers on OSF Preprints. We are working hard!

Preprints have the advantage of being rapidly and freely accessible. However, they have not undergone a peer review process and must be read with a more critical eye. Preprints are, therefore, clearly flagged on ScienceOpen. During his physics PhD, ScienceOpen co-founder Alexander Grossmann and his colleagues went first to the arXiv for the newest results to build upon and shape their thinking. They knew it was unfiltered and not peer reviewed, but they were often already at the next step in their research by the time the final version was published. Many features on ScienceOpen were created with this kind of speed in mind. Continue reading “Speeding up Research with Preprints”  

Spring Competition: Review an Article on ScienceOpen & Enter a Drawing for an Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet!

 

This Spring, we are organising a little competition for all you researchers! Review an article on ScienceOpen before the end of April, and we will enter you into a prize drawing for an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet.

  • Open Peer Review on ScienceOpen

ScienceOpen counts currently more than 40 million articles including 3.7 million open access articles as well as more than 1.4 million preprint articles. All these articles are open on ScienceOpen to a fully transparent review process: open identities, open reports, and open interaction on the platform (see our precedent blogpost here).

At ScienceOpen, we believe that “Open Science” is not just about sharing research data. For us, “Open Science” aims to make research and underlying data accessible in order to inform and allow researchers communities to take part in discussions regarding their field, increasing overall participation and relevant inclusion of different perspectives.

Open peer reviews are also crucial in this current context of rapid development of open science and digital scientific communication. If the openness of scientific contents is a first victory for the advancement of research and innovation, open peer review still needs to be embodied in this practice to establish its full credibility and full benefit. (Picture: CC0 1.0)

  • What does reviewing on ScienceOpen bring concretely to reviewers?

→ Reviews are published under Creative Commons Attribution License CC-BY (4.0) and will receive a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) from Crossref. This makes them fully equivalent to any Open Access publication, and they can be cited or integrated further into platforms like Publons, Impactstory, or ORCID.

→ As open access publications indexed on ScienceOpen, reviews are public and can be found easily on the platform using the filter “Content type”: “Review”. For a more precise search, this filter can be used for example in combination with the title of an article.

 

 

→ Reviewing articles on ScienceOpen is a great way to show the reviewer’s involvement in his/her research field and his/her appreciation for researchers who have dedicated their time to providing a research resource to their community.

  • Ready, set, go!

The only requirement to write a review on ScienceOpen is to be registered with ORCID (already done with a ScienceOpen profile) and have at least five publications assigned to the ORCID account (with which you reach ScienceOpenExpert status). If you do not meet these requirements but would still like to review a paper, contact us.

To enter the drawing, all you need to do is:

→ Log in to ScienceOpen

→ Explore our Content, our Collections

→ Choose any article in your field and click “Review article”.

You can also “Invite someone to review”. This video will help you in getting started.

 

 

We look forward to your reviews & will announce the winner on April 30th, 2018!

Good luck!

 

UCL Press Megajournal – What’s next?

The UCL Press announced ambitions for its megajournal project during a town hall event on January 16th 2018 with Dr. Paul Ayris, CEO of UCL Press and Pro-Vice-Provost (Library Services), and Prof. David Price, UCL Vice-Provost (Research), describing the wide-reaching goals and ideals that have moved the university in this undertaking. See the UCL news pages.

University College London

The town hall began the discussion by inviting Robert Kiley of the Wellcome Trust who gave some insight into their successful Wellcome Open Research megajournal, describing the rationale behind the move and how its researchers have taken to it.

UCL Press, having partnered with ScienceOpen to provide a hosting platform for its current eight academic journals, invited Stephanie Dawson, CEO of ScienceOpen, to discuss the further developments and vision toward providing researchers and publishers the infrastructure towards more open and transparent peer review and publication models, with increased search and discoverability.

Catriona MacCallum, previously with the Open Access publisher PLoS and consultant on the first megajournal PLoSONE, and now Director of Open Science with Hindawi, then painted a broad picture of the values, tools and advantages of an open science framework from an individual, institutional and societal perspective.

Ian Caswell, UCL Press Journals Manager, then outlined the aims and ambition of the UCL Press megajournal project to offer researchers and academics the opportunity to publish cross-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary work, characterized by openness.

The next step of the UCL Press megajournal is to begin a campus-wide consultation on the needs and expectations of the UCL community in terms of open peer review and versioning, editorial oversight, topical focus, and technicalities.

Topical focus

A megajournal is by definition of broad scope so as to encourage inter-/cross-disciplinarity and to provide a publishing outlet for content that is not easily categorized. The UCL Press megajournal will begin with a focus on environmental sciences, including contributions from earth sciences, geography, UCL’s medical school, population sciences and UCL Institute of Education. Ultimately, the goal is to provide a platform for the entire university and beyond. Interested UCL researchers outside of these fields should contact UCL Press Journals Manager Ian Caswell about expanding the scope of the platform.

Some topical selection, however, can be very useful for readers in discovering new and related articles in their field. Traditionally, enforcing a narrow definition of scope has been the role of the editor. With this in mind, the ScienceOpen platform opens up the possibility for researchers to create their own topical selection from the whole scholarly corpus. UCL researchers are invited to explore this possibility and create a ScienceOpen “Collection” with the top articles in their fields that can also include articles published in the megajournal or other UCL Press journals. To apply for Collection Editor status contact Stephanie Dawson at ScienceOpen.

The aim of the UCL Press megajournal is to publish sound research, rather than hyped-up results. It aims to welcome research of all kinds like negative or inconclusive results, descriptive papers, protocols, methods or data papers, literature reviews. The focus of the platform will not be on “impact factor”, but rather individual article and author metrics which can be tracked on the platform and used in individualized search and sort mechanisms within the ScienceOpen discovery environment. The consultation and development of the UCL Press megajournal is still on-going and further details will be announced as to its exact aims and scope and submission criteria.

Open and Post Publication Peer Review

By utilising open peer review, we can promote accountable, responsible, and high quality assessment and evaluation of publications. However, what is the purpose and character of “open” and “post-publication” peer review in an open access megajournal? One way to think of it is the tradition of publishing “book reviews” in the social sciences and humanities, which could provide a good model. Other platforms such as Copernicus, F1000 Research or newcomer SciPost have functional systems of review that are closer to the journal peer review model. UCL Press will be consulting with researchers on how the platform can provide the best quality feedback from peers in a constructive way within the technical scope of the platform.

The ScienceOpen platform infrastructure allows for any registered user with an ORCID and “expert” status (5 published articles) to review any paper. The author or any user can also invite reviewers via the platform. Potential reviewers who do not meet these basic criteria can still review an article if the editor decides to give them reviewer status. Because each review receives a DOI and is deposited with the publishing metadata hubs Crossref and ORCID, it is challenging to include anonymous and unaccountable reviews on the platform.

Versioning

If peer review is conducted transparently and openly, authors must have the possibility of revising their articles and tracking those revisions on the platform. The ScienceOpen platform can provide the infrastructure for this versioning system, however, questions remain on how versioning will inform best publication practice, like should the first submission of an article be regarded as a “preprint” which can be taken down if the community review is very negative or published elsewhere? Alternatively, on the other hand, should it be regarded as a publication from the start with the first version only being retracted in extreme cases? Each policy has its advantages and disadvantages which requires careful discussion towards development into a working model.

Editorial oversight

The level of editorial oversight is another question that all megajournals must decide upon. In the first phase of the megajournal project, it is likely to have a focus to staff and students of UCL, but does not necessarily mean the megajournal will be limited to only UCL authors. As the journal expands its scope and audience to accept articles from beyond the university, it may become necessary to adjust and reassess the review process before publication to prevent poor or fraudulent research from being added to the corpus of published scholarly work.

Technicalities

The UCL Press megajournal will publish all articles open access with a Creative Commons CC BY license. The ScienceOpen platform will require ORCID IDs from all authors and Fundref IDs for funding bodies are encouraged. Open references through CrossRef as part of the I4OC initiative and open data summaries in manuscripts to link to or describe how to access the data underlying the publication, will be available for use for the UCL Press megajournal. All of these technicalities are still under consultation at UCL Press and further announcements will be made on the UCL Press website and social media.

 

Launching a megajournal for UCL is a project that requires vision and commitment from the university and the community. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let’s change the landscape of scholarly communication together!

You will find the slides from the town hall event at DOI: https://doi.org/10.14324/111.1234, made available under a CC BY license.

Stephanie Dawson, ScienceOpen and Ian Caswell, UCL Press

The New Year under Review

The New Year under Review

Welcome to 2018! In December we highlighted our topical Collections on ScienceOpen and asked you to review any paper in a collection to enter a drawing for an Amazon Kindle Fire tablet. Today we would like to thank everyone who shared their expertise on ScienceOpen over the last year and are happy to announce the winner: Agustín Estrada Peña of the University of Zaragoza, Spain.

Street Artist SAM3 Image via http://photovide.com/street-art-murals-world/

Agustín is editor of the collection Ticks and Tick-Borne Pathogens, a comprehensive overview with over 11,000 articles covering the whole spectrum from biology and habitats to molecular mechanisms of disease and epidemiology. The ScienceOpen collection format allows researchers to search within these papers with a wide range of filters and quickly change the top view with sort by date, citations, Altmetric Score, usage and more to drill down and find interesting new work.

Agustín reviewed the paper The global distribution of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. More reviews of articles in this collection by the tick community are highly welcome. Help to make this an important resource for all! To learn how you can add to this knowledge database check out our resources on reviewing on ScienceOpen. Remember, all reviews are published with a CC BY Open Access license and receive a Crossref DOI. Continue reading “The New Year under Review”  

In:  Aggregation  

A preprints goldmine at ScienceOpen

Did you know that we have more than 1.3 million preprints on ScienceOpen?

Preprints are first-draft research manuscripts, and have been around for as long as the Web has existed. Some researchers, like physicists, have been posting them online for almost 3 decades, taking advantage of the rapid communication capabilities that the internet enabled. Now, researchers in the Life Sciences and other fields are catching up, with platforms like bioRxiv, the Center for Open Science, as well as the ASAPbio initiative.

Preprint or not preprint? Simple!

At ScienceOpen, we fully support research communities and their adoption of preprints.  To make discovering them even easier, we have recently added a preprint filter to our search engine. ScienceOpen currently has 35 million article records as part of our expanding citation network. We are growing each day as new content is integrated from our publishing partners, and sources like PubMed, CrossRef, ORCID and arXiv.

Continue reading “A preprints goldmine at ScienceOpen”  

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