Questionnaires and data from Christian Heise’s doctoral thesis „Von Open Access zu Open Science: Zum Wandel digitaler Kulturen der wissenschaftlichen Kommunikation“ are published

Christian Heise published questionnaires and data from his doctoral thesis „Von Open Access zu Open Science: Zum Wandel digitaler Kulturen der wissenschaftlichen Kommunikation“ on Zendo. Christian can certainly be regarded as a pioneer as he wrote this thesis live on the internet and offered a maximum of insights and verifiability, among other things he documented changes via github and shared all information (just like the thesis itself) under open licenses.

This also applies to questionnaires and data provided under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license:

Heise, Christian. (2017, December 6). Fragebogen und Daten zum Dissertationsvorhaben „Von Open Access zu Open Science: Zum Wandel digitaler Kulturen der wissenschaftlichen Kommunikation“ (Version 1.0). Zenodo. DOI:10.5281/zenodo.1095129

Please note that the thesis can also be ordered as a printed book from meson press or be downloaded as a Open Access publication from the meson website as a PDF.

Alternatively, an export of the live thesis can also be downloaded from Zenodo:
Heise, Christian. (2016). offene-doktorarbeit: Release – Submitted Version (1.0) [Data set]. Zenodo. DOI:10.5281/zenodo.263075

 

Copyright note: Icon available under MIT License from https://www.iconfinder.com/icons/2561489/unlock_icon

 

 

Samuel Moore on „Open/Access: Negotiations Between Openness and Access to Research“

Open Divide: Critical Studies on Open AccessAnother notice of an Open Access publication from the anthology „Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access„: Samuel Moore published his text „Open/Access: Negotiations Between Openness and Access to Research“ on the repository of the King’s College London under https://kclpure.kcl.ac.uk/portal/en/publications/openaccess(4d219d49-4f8e-4940-b3b9-f27f4afb72af).html.

Here is also the abstract of Samuel’s article: „Open access (OA) is a contested term with a complicated history and a variety of understandings. This rich history is routinely ignored by institutional, funder and governmental policies that instead enclose the concept and promote narrow approaches to OA. This paper presents a genealogy of the term open access, focusing on the separate histories that emphasise openness and reusability on the one hand, as borrowed from the open-source software and free culture movements, and accessibility on the other hand, as represented by proponents of institutional and subject repositories. From analysing its historical underpinnings and subsequent development, I argue that OA is best conceived as a boundary object, i.e. OA is less suitable as a policy object because boundary objects lose their use-value when ‘enclosed’ at a general level, but should instead be treated as a community-led, grassroots endeavour.“

The list of all articles in the anthology with links to texts availabe as Open Access publications can be found here.

Here is the bibliographic information on Open Divide:
Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access
Editors: Ulrich Herb and Joachim Schöpfel
Price: $35.00
Expected: Spring 2018
Publisher: Litwin Books
ISBN: 978-1-63400-029-1

A little bibliography on criteria for assessing the quality of scientific documents

Quality sign

As mentioned before I work on a literature review focusing on criteria for assessing the quality of scientific documents. As I found in the Web of Science, Scopus and Google Scholar very few literature on cognitive construction processes or relevant content-related parameters that make articles seem to be of high quality I asked in a recent posting for support by the readers of this blog.

One reader, Dr. Werner Dees, actually sent me very, very valuable tips. The complete list of the reviewed literature can be found below as text and downloaded as a BibTEx-file. Please give the file the extension .bib after the download, it ends now on .txt.

The articles I found most useful are Mårtensson, P., Fors, U., Wallin, S.-B., Zander, U., & Nilsson, G. H. (2016). and especially Bucholz (1995), the latter being a recommendation of Dr. Dees.

Florence Piron on „Postcolonial Open Access“

Open Divide: Critical Studies on Open AccessAnother article from the anthology „Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access“ is online. Florence Piron published her contribution „Postcolonial Open Access“ available on the repository of the Université Laval under http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/16178.

Here is also the abstract of Florence’s article: „Is open access the solution to many of the problems faced in the Global South by postcolonial universities, lacking the resources and capacity to subscribe to expensive scientific journals? In this chapter, drawing on an action-research project in Haiti and in Francophone Africa, I argue that this is not the case. On the contrary, open access can become a tool of neocolonialism if it only gives students and academics better access to science from the North. I conclude with recommendations to make open access an instrument of emancipation and cognitive justice in Africa and Haiti.“

The list of all articles in the anthology with links to texts availabe as Open Access publications can be found here.

Here is the bibliographic information on Open Divide:
Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access
Editors: Ulrich Herb and Joachim Schöpfel
Price: $35.00
Expected: Spring 2018
Publisher: Litwin Books
ISBN: 978-1-63400-029-1

Elena Šimukovič on „Open Access, a New Kind of Emerging Knowledge Regime?“

Open Divide: Critical Studies on Open AccessFollowing Jutta Haider and Richard Poynder, Elena Šimukovič has now published her contribution to the anthology „Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access“ online.

Elena made her contribution worth reading „Open Access, a New Kind of Emerging Knowledge Regime?“ available on the repository of the University of Vienna under https://phaidra.univie.ac.at/view/o:653995.

Here is also the abstract of Elena’s article: „Open Access as a programmatic name for a new mode of dissemination of scholarly publications has been around since the turn of this millennium. However, a considerable accumulation of calls for a more rapid transition from journal subscription towards ‚full‘ Open Access system can be observed in the recent years. By looking at some of the beginning aspirations of the Open Access movement as well as proposed disruption scenarios this contribution aims at discussing some of less visible aspects in current debates and to give a glimpse at embedding this sort of initiatives in a conceptual framework by making use of the notion of an emerging ‚knowledge regime‘. “

The list of all articles in the anthology with links to texts availabe as Open Access publications can be found here.

Here is the bibliographic information on Open Divide:
Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access
Editors: Ulrich Herb and Joachim Schöpfel
Price: $35.00
Expected: Spring 2018
Publisher: Litwin Books
ISBN: 978-1-63400-029-1

A lack of literature on qualitative aspects of scientific articles?

StarWorking on a literature review I am looking for publications on the perceived quality of scientific literature. I use the Web of Science, Scopus and Google Scholar as databases and find very, very few literature on cognitive construction processes or relevant content-related parameters that make some articles appear to be of high-quality and others to be inferior.

It is clear to me that quality is a multi-dimensional construct, the dimensions of which have to be operationalised themselves. Since the study should not be very time-consuming, it would suffice for me to find at least texts describing these dimensions. The operationalisation of these dimensions or the definition of indicators to describe them would not interest me in a first step.

I am/was also aware that the use of quantitative factors (e. g. citation-based parameters) are – in the opinion of many people mistakenly – used to operationalise quality in science. Nevertheless, I am surprised that apart from this quantitative information, almost only formal (e. g. design of the text through structuring) or syntactic (e. g. structure of sentences, formulation questions) are discussed as criteria of qualitative evaluation – whereas extremely rarely really substantive criteria relating to the content of publications.

After finishing my collection of literature I will publish my list of relevant articles here. If you would like to give me some literature tips, you do so by commenting, mailing or by other means. These tips will also be included in the list to be shared here – with reference to the contributor.

Books per Publisher: Data from the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB)

The Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB) is considered to be an important registry for quality-checked Open Access books – even if not all peer reviewed books are listed there. Two days ago, on 23.01.2018, I took a quick look at the ratio of books per publisher.

On that day, DOAB listed 254 publishers who had registered 10,502 books. The arithmetic mean was 41.35 books per publisher, the median was 10. Accordingly, the majority of publishers publish very few books. In fact, 92 publishers (36% of all listed publishers) reported five or less books.

On the other hand, 19 publishers (7,5% of all listed publishers) publish 5,373 books and thus more than half of the books reported (51%).

The extremely trivial data can be downloaded here as an OpenDocument file.

Jutta Haider on „Openness as Tool for Acceleration and Measurement: Reflections on Problem Representations Underpinning Open Access and Open Science“

As mentioned in this blog, Joachim Schöpfel and I will publish the anthology „Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access“ in Spring 2018. The book will not be published in Gold Open Access, but all authors retain the right to make their contribution openly available on a repository (or elsewhere).

Jutta Haider has published her contribution „Openness as Tool for Acceleration and Measurement: Reflections on Problem Representations Underpinning Open Access and Open Science“ on the reprository of Lund University https://lup.lub.lu.se/search/publication/070c067e-5675-455e-a4b2-81f82b6c75a7.

I recommend the text to all those who are interested in a reflection on Open Access. I have learned a lot from reading the article.

Here is also the abstract of Jutta’s contribution: „Increasingly open access emerges as an issue that researchers, universities, and various infrastructure providers, such as libraries and academic publishers, have to relate to. Commonly policies requiring open access are framed as expanding access to information and hence as being part of a democratization of society and knowledge production processes. However, there are also other aspects that are part of the way in which open access is commonly imagined in the various policy documents, declarations, and institutional demands that often go unnoticed. This essay wants to foreground some of these issues by asking the overarching question: ‚What is the problem that open access is seen to solve represented to be?‘ The paper will discuss how demands to open up access to research align also with an administrative enclosure and managerial processes of control and evaluation. It will show that while demands for free and open access to research publications – created or compiled in research processes funded by public money – are seen as contributing to the knowledge base for advancing society for a common good and in that sense framed as part of a liberating discourse, these demands are also expression of a shift of control of the science community to invisible research infrastructures and to an apparatus of administration as well as subscribing to an ideal of entrepreneurialism as well as continuing a problematic and much criticized understanding of Western science as universal.“

The list of all articles in the anthology with links to texts availabe as Open Access publications can be found here. Joachim Schöpfel and I encourage all authors to publish their texts Open Access and in this blog I will provide a list of links to theses full texts.

Here is the bibliographic information on Open Divide:
Open Divide? Critical Studies on Open Access
Editors: Ulrich Herb and Joachim Schöpfel
Price: $35.00
Expected: Spring 2018
Publisher: Litwin Books
ISBN: 978-1-63400-029-1

Webinar der Wikimedia Foundation zu Open Access am 31. Januar

Open Access buttons photo
Photo by h_pampel

Das Fellow-Programm Freies Wissen der Wikimedia Foundation veranstaltet am 31.01.2018 ein Webinar zu Open Access, weitere Informationen finden sich unter: https://blog.wikimedia.de/2018/01/15/fellow-programm-freies-wissen-webinar-zu-open-access-am-31-januar/.

Das Fellow-Programm geht zurück auf eine Initiative von  von Wikimedia Deutschland,  Stifterverband und VolkswagenStiftung. Ziel ist es, junge Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler bei der Nutzung und Anwendung von Open Science zu unterstützen. Das Webinar findet in der Zeit von 14:00 bis 16:00 Uhr statt und wird angeboten von der Freien Universität Berlin, genauer: Dr. Christina RiesenweberDr. Agnieszka Wenninger.

 

News about the Elsevier agreement in Finland

ElsevierA few hours ago, Elsevier issued a press release on the agreement with the Finnish consortium FinElib that put an end to the #nodealnoreview boycott. Below you will find some information about it:
  • There is no comprehensive Open Access clause. Elsevier promises to provide „Finnish researches with incentives to publish open access if they so choose. (…) Elsevier and FinELib have initiated an Open Access pilot program that stimulates Finnish researchers to publish their articles open access in Elsevier journals.“
  • The three-year „contract applies to 13 Finnish universities, 11 research institutions and 11 universities of applied sciences“.
  • Researchers from these institutions will have „access to around 1,850 journals on Elsevier’s ScienceDirect e-platform“.

The press release quotes Keijo Hämäläinen, Rector at the University of Jyväskylä as follows: „We are pleased with Elsevier taking concrete steps to support our open access goals.“ Unfortunately, in this press release there is no information given on the costs of licensing Elsevier’s content and on the „concrete steps“ regarding Open Access.

FinELib gives a little more insight on his website: „The total value of the license agreement is slightly under 27 M euros. The agreement offers researchers a new opportunity to publish their articles open access with a 50 % discount on article processing charges (APC). This discount is available for all corresponding authors in organisations that are parties to the agreement. The discount is offered for articles published in over 1500 subscription journals and over 100 full open access journals.“ A page in the FinELib Wiki even offers more information:  The list of journals covered by this arrangement (see here) includes over 1.500 Elsevier owned  hybrid-journals and over 100 Full Open Access Journals. The society-owned titles (like CELL) published by Elsevier are not included. How this list was negotiated could be interesting . A similar list of journals, which was compiled in a comparable deal in the Netherlands, is said not to have been loaded with high-quality journals. Furthermore, it is unlikely that Elsevier will reduce the subscription costs of journals as their Open Access share increases. It should also be noted that Elsevier publishes almost twice as many journals, 2,969: Therefore, Finnish researchers can neither read all Elsevier journals nor publish Open Access in all of them at reduced prices.

Back to Elsevier’s presse release that makes clear how Elsevier wants to make such arrangements attractive: Firstly, it says „Based on Scopus and ScienceDirect data, Finnish research published by Elsevier increased by 37.5 percent between 2011 and 2015 while the total number of Finnish articles published grew by 15.8 percent during that the same period. These numbers demonstrate the value Finnish scientists attach to publishing in Elsevier’s high-quality journals.“ It could also be said that these growth rates are an expression of market concentration and are not owed to the fact that Elsevier is an unrivalled attractive publisher. On the other hand, Gino Ussi, Executive Vice President at Elsevier, is cited: „The average quality of Elsevier’s articles worldwide, as indicated by the citation impact, is 30 percent above market average. This makes publishing in Elsevier journals particularly attractive to Finnish researchers, with whom we’ve had a long-lasting relationship.“

Brief summary: Elsevier has a growing market share (generated by library funds) and highly cited journals (produced by scientists), so it is advisable to sign further contracts with Elsevier.