The European Association of Science Editors (EASE) is an international community of individuals and associations from diverse backgrounds, linguistic traditions and professional experience in science communication and editing.

Hindawi services for institutional repositories

The open access publisher Hindawi have announced a new service for institutions, whereby they will automatically deposit a copy of an article with affiliated authors into the institutional repository as soon as it is published.

The service is designed to reduce the burden on authors and institutions manually transferring files, and looks simple to set up, with Hindawi’s tech team on hand to help with any complications.

See full details on the Hindawi site here: https://about.hindawi.com/institutions/claim/

Hindawi made headlines last year when they left the STM Association as a result of the conservative and obstructive stance the organisation is taking with regards to open access (a position underscored with their open access Statement to the EU open access, published in December and now removed from the web).

This new service looks further their goals of supporting freely available reseach, and should be a very helpful facility for any staff involved in tracking and measuring the research output of their institutions or faculties.

Taylor & Francis to pay reviewers in fast track publishing service

Providing authors with faster peer review and rewarding reviewers for their assistance to publishers in achieving this goal are thorny issues, but one of the large publishers is trying a new initiative.

Taylor & Francis have described how their Accelerated Publication service for authors involves payments of $150 to each peer reviewer who submits their comments within one week.

There are no official details of the payment structure available on the T&F website as yet, but they do present the workflow for this Accelerated Publication service: http://taylorandfrancis.com/partnership/commercial/prioritized-publication/

In a Twitter conversation with science communication journalist Richard Poynder@tandfonline revealed the payment news and provided several details of the process and motives behind it:

“Hi there Accelerated Publication covers submission to online publication and is designed to meet the needs of a select group, primarily in the biomedical sciences. (1/6)

This service is designed to give authors more control over timing of publication to fit with grant deadlines, product launches etc (2/6)

Reviewers are paid an honorarium on completion of their review because we are asking them to complete within a set timeframe. (3/6)

This timeframe is clear in all correspondence to reviewers invited to review Accelerated Publication submissions, and they accept the invitation on this basis. (4/6)

Payment is completely independent of their recommendation to the editor and many papers are in fact rejected e.g. CMRO had rejection rate of 52% on Accelerated Publication submissions in 2017 (5/6)

Hope this explains but if you have any more questions please contact us on communications@tandf.co.uk, and we’ll come back to you as quickly as we can. (6/6)”

This is not the first time a large publisher has tried a fast-track system involving payments to peer reviewers. In 2015, Nature’s Scientific Reports set up a trial with Rubriq to offer a similar service, which saw one of their editors quit the journal in protest.

This was part of a trial for conceptual journal-independent peer review services, where companies conduct a scientific review of papers, then pass them to a suitable journal where the decision process could be accelerated.  However, during 2017, Rubriq and Axiom Review, a company providing similar services, both folded due to lack of take-up. It seems that vision for payment and speed incentives was not right for the time or place.

T&F have been actively involved in trying to determine suitable means of compensating their reviewers for some time. In 2016 they published a white paper titled “Peer Review – a global view”, which investigated many opinions around the process,  one section of which addressed incentives. The survey identified strong support for free access to papers, waivers for open access and page fees, and recognition, in the form of certificates or a published list of names (with stronger support if the name was not directly related to the paper).

On the subject of direct financial compensation, their survey found a lack of consensus, with almost equal numbers of responses stating they would be “less likely”, “more likely”, and neutrally valenced. Deeper analysis of responses showed the:

“youngest age group (20-29 year olds) are most in favour of receiving payment and those who are 60+ are most resistant. Whether this attitude among younger scholars will change as they progress in their careers, or if the call for reviewers to be paid will grow in time, could be an area of future examination.”

T&F appear to have approached this controversial issue as carefully and diligently as possible before launching this service, so we are keen to watch how response to their version unfolds.

– Sunday 21st January, 2018 –

More steps towards transparency in research publishing

An Editorial published in Nature in September presented some “Steps towards transparency in research publishing” (Nature 2017;549(431), doi: 10.1038/549431a)

The Editorial discusses how progress in the transparency of both research and editorial processes is gathering pace, discussing five forms of transparency documented in a project overseen by Malcolm Macleod of the University of Edinburgh.

In addition to the positive steps, the Editorial also poses questions about the risks involved in opening up, considering whether transparency could give rise to a different sort of bias; for example, some authors do not want to know who authored a positive peer review, so that they can avoid future positive peer review bias themselves.

https://www.nature.com/news/steps-towards-transparency-in-research-publishing-1.22661

COPE introduce Core Practices

COPE has recently replaced its “Code of Conduct for Editors” with “Core Practices”.

The reasons COPE provide for these changes are stated on its website, as being that the guidelines were criticised for being overly specific in some areas and not specific enough in others.

It goes on to explain that the core practices have radically simplified the expectations of how all parties will act, and seeks to provide a framework which references the resources available on the COPE website.

Another recent change is the introduction of institutional membership which is being piloted with five institutions.

A discussion of these changes can be read on Scholarly Kitchen.

– Posted: Wednesday 13th December, 2017 –

BMC Research Notes Launches Data Notes

In October, BMC Research Notes launched ‘data notes’.

The BMC describes data notes as “data descriptors that aim to increase data availability and support the reuse of valuable research data.” Data notes are restricted to a limit of 1000 words, and comprise three sections: Objective, Data description and Limitations.

They still come at a price, with a APC of €600 per article, but the goal is to provide a visible platform to make better use of valuable data that may otherwise go unused.

For more information about data notes, and BMC Research Notes, read a blog post by BMC editor Dirk Krüger, here.

– Posted: Monday 11th December, 2017 –

STM Association Statement on Open Access

This week the STM Association published their recommendations for the next EU Framework programme, regarding open access and open science.

It addresses several topics, including funding for Gold OA, hybrid journals, APC caps, embargo periods, existing infrastructure and journal models, longer texts (such as monographs and books), competition and diversity, and ‘open science’ in general.

The statement is publically available here.

Members can add your thoughts to the discussion in our forum here

– Posted: Friday 8th December, 2017 –

New Style Author Toolkit!

Hot on the heels of the Peer Reviewer toolkit, comes a revised Author Toolkit!

In the same style as the PR Toolkit, I have organised all the resources in the toolkit into some main themes and collected them together in different pages.

The main themes of the modules are:

General Writing Tips
Peer Review for Authors
Publishing and Editorial Issues
Ethics for Authors
Other Resources

There is not much new in it yet, but I will be adding new content to the toolkit in the near future, especially an entire module devoted to Open Access, ‘predatory’ journals, pros and cons and more.

http://www.ease.org.uk/publications/ease-toolkit-authors/

Feel free to message me if you would like to be involved in expanding it, or have any comments/questions.

Thanks!

Duncan

PubMed Journal Selection Webinar

Join staff of the U.S. National Library of Medicine to learn how journals are selected for MEDLINE and PubMed Central, how NLM has responded to an evolving scholarly communication ecosystem, and how to use NLM resources in assessing the quality of a publication.

“PubMed Journal Selection and the Changing Landscape of Scholarly Communication.”
Date and time: Friday, October 6, 2017, 1:00 PM-2:00 PM EDT

This Webinar is intended for librarians and other information specialists who work with PubMed. Participants may receive one MLA continuing education credit.

By the end of this Webinar, participants should be able to:


If you are interested in joining, registration is on the NNLM site, here
: https://nnlm.gov/class/pubmed-journal-selection-and-changing-landscape-scholarly-communication/7780

 

Metadata 2020 Collaboration

Metadata 2020

 

 

 

 

 

 

Metadata 2020 is a new global initiative, organised to draw together people and organisations from all over the world. Its goal is to rally and support the academic community around the critical issue of sharing richer metadata for research communications.

The collaboration, which is being overseen by Crossref, involves researchers, publishers, aggregators, service providers, librarians, and funders who will commit to improving the quality and interoperability of their metadata. Crucially, Metadata 2020 aims to enhance communication between the different communities involved in scholarly communications, through sharing stories and resources, providing education and support to everyone seeking to improve their metadata.

The role of Editors is key in this collaboration, given our very hands-on involvement in adding the metadata into the ecosystem, our perspective on the use of metadata in publishing, and the nature of our interaction with so many scholarly communications groups who produce, use, and work with metadata.

Across the full research community, we struggle with a consistency in the formats and quality of metadata. Properly structuring metadata makes it easy to find, retrieve and coordinate information for individuals and cross-organisational platforms.

For example, in many instances, publishers and data repositories set up metadata feeds to Crossref or Datacite when they launch, but do not go back to update any of the configurations later if any change to data forms or workflows are made. Another example addresses attitudes in attention to detail and the global impact it may have – if there are mistakes in the content of metadata, corrections tend to receive less care and oversight than they should, relative to how much it is actually worth to all of us. And as a final example: in a blog post on the University of Cambridge Schol Comms blog, Dr Danny Kingsley writes:

“Researchers cannot be expected to share their data at the end of their research project if they are unable to locate their data, if the data is not correctly labelled or if it lacks metadata to make the data re-usable.”

 

The reality is that most scholarly communications infrastructure is based on the metadata, so quality is key to all of our success. It is our shared responsibility, and through increasing awareness of its value, and implementation of high quality practices, we will see shared benefits.

Metadata 2020 is taking the approach of organizing smaller community-focused groups for funders, data repos, researchers, etc. to help articulate specific case studies on the financial and community benefits of better metadata. It would be great to have your help!

Find out more at www.metadata2020.org, follow @Metadata2020 on Twitter, and email info@metadata2020.org to participate.