Thursday, February 16, 2012

F1000 Research

F1000 Research is an open access journal that may radically change scholarly communication. The journal will rely on post-publication peer review. This is the latest initiative of the Faculty of 1000 where senior scientists select and evaluate top published papers in biomedicine.
The new journal will also publish the data behind the research such as incomplete data sets, negative results and "thought experiments" which normally never find a home in the journal literature.
Any submission that passes a basic "sanity check" will be published and then specific experts will be invited to post a review. Other readers can also add their comments. The journal will be funded by article fees presumably using the pay per view model. There are lots of operational questions still to be answered but the journal hopes to formally launched later in 2012.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Open Access Portal

The Global Open Access Portal (GOAP) which presents a snapshot of the status of open access to scientific information was launched at a special event of the 36th. Session of the Unesco General Conference. The portal has country reports from more than 148 countries with links to more than 2,000 initiatives and projects ( Read the Irish Report

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Elsevier Responds

In an Open Letter to the Research Community Elsevier has responded to criticisms from the scholarly community. Standing firm on value for money and the fact that they facilitate some open access they do appear to be worried about the strength of the criticism. As a librarian I would not agree that bundles are good value for money, libraries are forced to take titles they don't want and don't use and for many years journal prices just rose and rose for no apparent reason. The real fact of the matter is that libraries, even in the USA, can no longer afford these prices and new models need to be found in a hurry! Another fact to remember is the whole objective of academic publishing is to circulate research in order to obtain feedback and for scholarship to may well be the case that the journal publishing model is too slow and cumbersome for the 21st.Century.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Scholars Fight Back!

There is a growing protest by academics against Elsevier the world largest scientific journal publisher. It all started with a rant on a blog post at the end of January. The post was by Timonth Gowers, a prominent mathematician at Cambridge University. He suggested it would be a good idea to have a website where mathematicians who had decided not to contribute to Elsevier journals could electronically sign their names. It had about 1800 signatures by the end of January. The website is called Cost of Knowledge
The protest is about the prices Elsevier charge for their jounals and the fact that Elsevier has supported the proposed Research Works Act in the US which would effectively lock down access to academic writing and end the Open Access Movement.
Librarians have complained for years about the high prices that journal publishers charge but now the suppliers of the material are fighting back! Academics write the articles, review them all free of charge and then have to buy back their own material and now some of them are saying enough.
Roll on Open Access and the victory of the right of everyone to access knowledge!
There is a good article on this subject in the Chronicle of Higher Education January, 31, 2012 where Elsevier puts its case