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    Self-host a scientific journal with eLife Lens: open source software to power open publishing systems.

Self-host a scientific journal with eLife Lens: open source software to power open publishing systems.

The open access journal eLife has an ongoing commitment to not only making their research articles free to read, reuse and remix, but also their publishing software. By making these underlying resources available, academic communities can explore and embrace their own open digital platforms. Michael Aufreiter introduces the key features of the eLife Lens software. With this simple setup publishers can self-host […]

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    What’s the matter with ebooks? In our praise for print, we forget the great virtues of digital formats.

What’s the matter with ebooks? In our praise for print, we forget the great virtues of digital formats.

Do print versions still have an advantage over electronic formats? Ebook sales may be reaching a plateau but Dan Cohen argues there may be much more dark reading going on than the stats are showing. A huge and growing percentage of ebooks are being sold by indie publishers or authors themselves, and a third of them don’t even have ISBNs, the universal ID used to track […]

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    Gold open access in practice: How will universities respond to the rising total cost of publication?

Gold open access in practice: How will universities respond to the rising total cost of publication?

Are universities able to shoulder the costs of the open access transition? Stephen Pinfield presents findings on the current state of institutional costs. The total cost of publication is defined as existing subscription costs, article processing charges (APCs) and the costs of administering them. So is the total cost of publication rising for universities overall? In the short term at […]

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    The Academic Book of the Future: exploring academic practices and expectations for the monograph.

The Academic Book of the Future: exploring academic practices and expectations for the monograph.

What does the future hold for academic books? Rebecca Lyons introduces The Academic Book of the Future, a two-year project funded by the AHRC in collaboration with the British Library in which a cross-disciplinary team from University College London and King’s College London explores how scholarly work in the Arts and Humanities will be produced, read, shared, and preserved […]

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    Beyond Beall’s List: We need a better understanding of predatory publishing without overstating its size and danger.

Beyond Beall’s List: We need a better understanding of predatory publishing without overstating its size and danger.

Although predatory publishers predate open access, their recent explosion was expedited by the emergence of fee-charging OA journals. Monica Berger and Jill Cirasella argue that librarians can play an important role in helping researchers to avoid becoming prey. But there remains ambiguity over what makes a publisher predatory. Librarians can help to counteract the misconceptions and alarmism that stymie the acceptance […]

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    Academia is a reputation economy — data-sharing policies should take incentives into account.

Academia is a reputation economy — data-sharing policies should take incentives into account.

Data sharing has the potential to facilitate wider collaboration and foster scientific progress. But while 88% of researchers in a recent study confirmed they would like to use shared data, only 13% had actually made their own data publicly available. Benedikt Fecher, Sascha Friesike, Marcel Hebing, Stephanie Linek, and Armin Sauermann look at the mismatch between ideal and reality and argue that academia is a reputation […]

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    A blog may get you street credibility, but for formal academic recognition, books are still the preferred medium.

A blog may get you street credibility, but for formal academic recognition, books are still the preferred medium.

Could blogs replace books? Michael Piotrowski reflects on the current scholarly debate surrounding immediacy and impact of academic work. A significant issue for blogs is the lack of formal recognition, largely down to the general lack of pre-publication peer review. Books are more formal in all respects, but this doesn’t disqualify blogs per se. Blogs and books have different strengths and […]

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    Five Minutes with Cristóbal Cobo: Redefining Knowledge in the Digital Age.

Five Minutes with Cristóbal Cobo: Redefining Knowledge in the Digital Age.

How has and how will the overload of digital information impact the way that scholars look to absorb, disseminate, and assess new knowledge in journals and beyond? Scholastica’s Danielle Padula interviews Cristóbal Cobo of the Oxford Internet Institute on how technology is shaping the research and publishing process for the modern scholar.

How do you think the internet is changing the way […]

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    Introduction to Open Science: Why data versioning and data care practices are key for science and social science.

Introduction to Open Science: Why data versioning and data care practices are key for science and social science.

A significant shift in how researchers approach their data is needed if transparent and reproducible research practices are to be broadly advanced. Carly Strasser has put together a useful guide to embracing open science, pitched largely at graduate students. But the tips shared will be of interest far beyond the completion of a PhD. If time is spent up front thinking about file […]

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    Self-archived articles receive higher citation counts than non-OA articles from same political science journals.

Self-archived articles receive higher citation counts than non-OA articles from same political science journals.

The low level of research funding for the social sciences in the US is likely to have a direct and negative effect on researchers’ ability to pay the article processing charges associated with the most common Gold OA business model. But there are other options. Amy Atchison and Jonathan Bull look at the benefits of Green Open Access. Their research indicates self-archived/ Green […]

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    Are the natural sciences missing out by not embracing the monograph like the humanities and social sciences?

Are the natural sciences missing out by not embracing the monograph like the humanities and social sciences?

According to a recent HEFCE-commissioned report on monographs and open access, books in the humanities and social sciences are a valuable vehicle for research communication and the synthesis of complex research ideas. Steven Hill welcomes the report’s contributions and also reflects on whether the natural sciences are missing out by not more widely embracing the monograph as part of their own disciplinary practice.

One […]

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    Obstacles to innovation in digital publishing can be easily overcome by opening up legal channels for experimentation

Obstacles to innovation in digital publishing can be easily overcome by opening up legal channels for experimentation

When researchers are asked what innovation they need/want in publishing, they can be unimaginative in their responses for new technology. Martin Eve argues that by concentrating innovation into the hands of an ever-decreasing number of publishers, innovation and improvement become the responsibility of a market-driven publishing industry, and are therefore limited. Rather, when people are legally free to experiment, good […]

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    What’s the point of open academic data? Redefining valuable research based on re-use and reproducibility.

What’s the point of open academic data? Redefining valuable research based on re-use and reproducibility.

The benefits of open research to both those who fund it and to wider society mean that academia is on a course which cannot be altered, or returned to a previous state. Mark Hahnel discusses the momentum behind making all research outputs openly available online and what changes may be in store for universities in this transition. Funder mandates could shift […]

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Unravelling the true cost of publishing in open access

Universities must continue to monitor and track the variety of associated spending related to journal publishing and access, argues Lorraine Estelle. Many universities are forecasting that their APCs will more than double in number by 2018. Much of the difficulty in assessing the costs arises from the fact that the market is not transparent. Furthermore, the price of the APC is just one part of the […]

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    Scholarly communities face crucial social challenges in maintaining digital networks that can sustain participation.

Scholarly communities face crucial social challenges in maintaining digital networks that can sustain participation.

If we are going to take full advantage of the affordances that digital networks provide—facilitating forms of scholarly communication from those as seemingly simple as the tweet to those as complex as the journal article, the monograph, and their born-digital descendants— Kathleen Fitzpatrick argues we must focus as much on the social challenges that these networks raise as we […]

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    The best things in life aren’t always free, but they are freely available.

The best things in life aren’t always free, but they are freely available.

Digital publishing in the humanities is set to be discussed at this year’s American Historical Association Annual Meeting. Ahead of the event, Cecy Marden explores how open access outlets provide more than just wider access, but can provide new avenues for this scholarship to be taken. From long-form journalism to Pinterest boards, freely available research is just the starting point.

There […]

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    Is Nature’s “free to view” a magnanimous gesture or a cynical ploy?

Is Nature’s “free to view” a magnanimous gesture or a cynical ploy?

The big announcement from academic publisher Macmillan Science and Education this week is that subscribers can now share links to nature.com articles. But is this move as groundbreaking as purported? Michael Eisen argues that it is more likely Nature are promoting free access, while doing nothing to address the real obstacle to wider access – the subscription model. So, really, what they’re doing is not making […]

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