Explore new tools for next-generation, open peer review
In concurrence with Peer Review Week 2020, Stephanie Dawson and Ian Caswell of UCL Press will host a virtual event this Thursday, September 24th, describing the Open Peer Review tools behind UCL Open: Environment. The event will have the form of a case study, and Ian and Stephanie will explain the editorial workflow of UCL Open in addition to sharing their experience in implementing open publishing models on ScienceOpen. Come and tune in if you are a publisher, an editor, or simply an open science enthusiast, and get unique insight into the practical aspects of open publishing! This event will take place over Zoom at 4 pm CEST (UTC+2) on this coming Thursday. Go to the event page here to register so you can take part in this discussion!
At ScienceOpen, we recognize that access to information is essential to those trying to deepen their knowledge of a subject, and that is one reason why our mission is strongly rooted in promoting open access publishing. However, we also realize that there has gotten to be an overwhelming amount of information on nearly any subject for one person to sift through, which means the organization of academic publications is also important in addition to accessibility.
ScienceOpen Collections assist users and researchers
To help with information filtering and to highlight relevant research, we continually reach out to field experts and journal publishers and encourage them to become Collection editors — where they can then compile important research in their field in a Collection and share it on ScienceOpen. These Collections in all scholarly fields are promoted by ScienceOpen and embedded in our discovery platform to help direct readers in their research endeavors. Collections provide an interactive space for researchers to share and discuss important results as articles, preprints, books or chapters with dynamic search and sort filters for large collections of literature, article review functionalities, statistics and more. Importantly, the Collection editor is always named to provide context and so that they receive credit for their work. Expertise is valuable, so share yours!
Learn more about starting a collection – Webinar details
Explore new tools for next-generation, open peer review. ScienceOpen and UCL Press offer an interactive, hands-on, online workshop to demo the open peer review tools behind UCL’s interdisciplinary publishing platform UCL Open: Environment for researchers and editors.
Peer review is a key element of scholarly publishing, but for the past decade the research community has struggled to move beyond the black box and develop new open models of research evaluation. University College London and UCL Press would like to change that. Since the beginning, ScienceOpen has been committed to open peer review – now offering post-publication review options for over 62 million articles and preprints. So, with the vision of a university-led publishing platform based on open review principles, UCL Press teamed up with ScienceOpen to create the journal “UCL Open: Environment”.
ScienceOpen has released an automatically updating Collection on the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), currently integrating over 500 articles. In order to speed up the research cycle, articles that have not yet undergone peer review (flagged as “preprint“) are included and clearly flagged. This Collection is a go-to resource for science on this new disease, as content from many publishers and authors can be found on a single landing page and filtered using our search and discovery tools.
Minimizing the obstacles for knowledge dissemination: Publish conference posters and preprints
We want to support those researchers affected by conference cancellations as result of COVID-19: You can share your research results now by uploading your poster to ScienceOpen. This is a free service that is always and everywhere accessible and indefinitely available to use as open access without paywalls or other limitations.
The unique advantage of having a poster on ScienceOpen is that they immediately become available to community curation – fellow researchers can review and comment your work, creating a discussion and a feedback loop that are such a welcome part of live poster sessions.
ScienceOpen and AfricArXiv are partnering to provide African researchers with accelerated visibility, networking and collaboration opportunities.
The research and publishing platform ScienceOpen provides services and features relevant for publishers, institutions and researchers alike, including content hosting, context building, as well as discoverability features.
2020 will ring in a decade of more openness in scholarly research – more open access, more open peer review, more open source development, more open humanities and science. ScienceOpen is thrilled to support this development with a wide range of technology solutions. After all, it has been part of our mission statement, and our name, from day one.
For small publishing organizations like library publishers, societies, university presses or single journals, metadata generation and distribution can be a time-consuming manual effort. Sometimes important information is left out simply due to technical restrictions. ScienceOpen can take the pain out of these processes, saving you time and resources and providing richer metadata to your partners. Turning these technical tasks over to ScienceOpen as professional service provider can free up your time to focus on more important editorial goals.
For open access journals we now offer full journal hosting within our unique interactive discovery environment of over 60 million article records. With Crossref DOI deposit, ORCID integration, open review infrastructure, long term archiving, and state-of-the-art indexing and SEO, your open access journal can make ScienceOpen its home base and tap into the full infrastructure of scholarly publishing, all for a very reasonable price. We want to see open access journals grow and flourish in the next year and decade!
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 toinform andallow researchers communities to take part in discussions regarding their field, increasingoverall 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 ScienceOpen–Expert status). If you do not meet these requirements but would still like to review a paper, contact us.
Peer review at ScienceOpen is a little different to what you might be used to.
Does the fact that a paper has been published, and therefore peer reviewed, mean that it is flawless? Does it mean that the conversation around that research should stop? We do not think so. The only reason there would ever be no value in doing post-publication evaluation would be if all published work were completely infallible. Which is clearly not the case. This is, after all, why we continue to do research and build upon the work of those before us!
Therefore, we enable post-publication peer review across 34 million article records, as a form of final-version commenting. It can also be performed on preprints from the arXiv. These are essentially treated as open, pre-review manuscripts. Users can organise these into collections, and manage peer review entirely themselves as a community process.
We have now added a new feature that enables any of our users to invite another researcher to perform peer review on our platform. This is in the same way that an Editor does for a journal, as part of a fully transparent process – the theme for Peer Review Week this year! The difference to the traditional process of peer review is that this is more democratic as it is open to anyone.
All article pages now have an ‘Invite to Review’ button. Click it, and you have 2 options.
Search within the ScienceOpen userbase to see if the person you want to review already has a profile with us.
Add an email, or list of emails, of who you want to invite to review, if they don’t already have a ScienceOpen profile.
That’s it. It’s that easy. This combines the editorial management of peer review with open participation. We enable this to make sure that the process is fair, but efficient. This means that anyone within your research community can contribute to the research process, should they wish to.
‘Open research’ isn’t just about sharing resources like data, code, and papers, although this is a big part of it. One big, and often under-appreciated aspect of it is about making research accessible, inclusive, and participatory. A major principle driving this is leveraging transparency to bring processes and factors that are currently hidden into public view.
One area of research and scholarly communication where the debate is still very much ongoing for this is for peer review – our system of validation and gatekeeping to the vast archives of public knowledge.
OpenAIRE have released an important new survey and analysis on attitudes and experiences towards ‘Open Peer Review’ (OPR), based on more than 3000 respondents (full data available here to play with). This is important, as OPR is all about the principles above – making the process transparent, collaborative, inclusive, and in the end, better!
Below, we discuss some of the major findings of the survey, and how we at ScienceOpen fit into the bigger picture of Open Peer Review.
The future is Open
The main result of the survey is that the majority (60.3%) of respondents are in favour of OPR becoming a mainstream scholarly practice, particularly regarding open interaction, open reports and final-version commenting. Part of this is due to the relatively lower satisfaction scores reported, with just 56.4% of respondents being satisfied with traditional closed peer review, and 20.6% being dissatisfied – a much lower gap than all previous reports. From the survey, more than three quarters of respondents had previously engaged with OPR either as an author, reviewer, or editor. This suggests that OPR, in one form or another, is already probably more common practice than we might think.
Interestingly, this development is similar to what we saw with other aspects of ‘open science’ such as open access and open data – there is debate, experimentation, variable implementation, and finally they start to become accepted as the norm as policies, practices, and cultures adapt. The survey also showed that 88.2% of respondents were in favour of Open Access to publications, a much higher value than several years ago. It also found that support for OPR is correlated with support for Open Data and Open Access, which is perhaps not surprising, although conversations regarding OPR are still in their relative infancy.
This suggests that as debates around OPR mature, we are likely to see an increase in the uptake and support of it, as with other areas of ‘Open’. Indeed, the survey also found a difference in generational support for OPR, with younger generations favouring it more over more-established researchers. As it is these generations who will inherit and govern the system in the future, it is more likely to have the characteristics that they favour.