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NEWS ARCHIVES ACROSS THEMES  
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ARL invites libraries to register for 2018 LibQUAL+ survey
- 16 Jul 2018

The Association of Research Libraries is inviting libraries to join the global assessment community of LibQUAL+ by registering for the 2018 LibQUAL+ survey.

LibQUAL+ is a tool that libraries use to solicit, track, understand, and act upon users' opinions of service quality. The protocol is a rigorously tested web survey that helps libraries assess and improve library services, change organisational culture, and market the library.

Since 2000, more than 1,300 libraries in 35 countries have participated in LibQUAL+, including college and university, community college, health sciences, and academic law libraries. This growing community of participants and its extensive data set of more than two million completed surveys are rich resources for improving library services.

Registration to participate in the second LibQUAL+ survey session of 2018 is open through December 9, 2018. Participating libraries may schedule and run their survey at any time during this session.

New participants may register by sending email to libqual@arl.org. Past participants may register on the LibQUAL+ website and may be eligible for reduced fees. Institutions that participated in LibQUAL+ in 2017 will receive a discount of $1,000 on their 2018 survey registration, and institutions that last participated in 2016 will receive a discount of $500.

As a benefit of registration, participants are able to view results for all libraries participating in the same survey year. For access to the full set of survey results from 2000 through 2018, institutions may purchase an annual LibQUAL+ Membership Subscription for $1,000.

Registration for the 2018 survey year will close November 1, 2018.

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SPARC Europe announces new research initiative on open incentives and reward systems
- 13 Jul 2018

SPARC Europe has announced that it is undertaking a new research initiative that will shed light on the various patterns of rewards and incentives being employed by funding organisations as well as those that address openness of the research they fund.

Funders are crucial players in the advancement of Open Access and Open Science. Their use of rewards and incentives have a huge impact on whether or not research they support is ultimately published via Open journals and other channels - freely available to all.

The idea behind the new research undertaking is to support research funding organisations - to inspire them to consider new options of rewards.

The project will see SPARC Europe, with the aid of other stakeholders such as Science Europe, reaching out to more than 50 European research funding organisations across Europe with a survey that will seek to gather information about the various types and scopes of reward and incentive systems in place or in-the-works. These will be highlighted in an effort to stimulate and encourage open research practices.

Plans are to follow-up the survey with a limited number of interviews to highlight a range of practices. While details are still being determined, results of the research undertaking will be shared with both the funder and Open Access and Open Science communities. The survey is expected to be distributed later this year.

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Association of Research Libraries publishes Library Development, SPEC Kit 359
- 12 Jul 2018

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) has released Library Development, SPEC Kit 359, which gathers information to better understand the supporting structures and resources (personnel, financial, and material) and the activities and expectations associated with library development efforts at ARL member libraries.

This SPEC survey retained some elements of the similar 2006 study for longitudinal comparison of the pre-recession environment and the current, post-recession environment. The 2018 survey included new elements to more broadly depict the current role of library development, including 'friend-raising' (efforts intended to generate committed and supportive relationships with outside parties and entities), communication to stakeholders of library value added, and stories and/or descriptive measures provided in these communication efforts. The survey also examined the role of advisory boards in the fund-raising process. Since many academic libraries are either currently or soon will be engaged in a capital campaign, or renovation of an old library, or construction of a new library, the survey also examined the complexities of these common endeavours.

This SPEC Kit includes examples of organisational charts, position descriptions, documents on fund-raising goal setting and development board and friends governance, gift policies, capital campaign literature, and statements on intellectual freedom, inclusion, and diversity.

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New Springer Nature report shows value of hybrid journals to research community and beyond
- 03 Jul 2018

A report from Springer Nature shows that OA articles published in hybrid journals attract more downloads, citations, and attention compared with non-OA articles in hybrid journals.

The findings of the report, 'Assessing the open access effect for hybrid journals,' demonstrate this wider value which hybrid journals bring to researchers and to funders, institutions and society more broadly.

The analysis by Digital Science of a global sample of over 70,000 articles published in Springer Nature hybrid journals examined the relationship between OA and usage (measured in terms of downloads), citations, and broader impact (using Altmetric data).

The global study showed that OA articles were downloaded on average 1.6 times more by users based at academic institutions and four times more by users overall, compared to non-OA articles. OA articles attracted an average of 1.6 times more citations and 1.9 times more news mentions than non-OA articles.

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New Nature Index data shows surge in China's publishing of high-quality research in the Earth and environmental sciences
- 02 Jul 2018

New data from the Nature Index show a surge in China's publishing of high-quality research in the Earth and environmental sciences. The United States remains the leading nation in the field, but China's output is catching up, rising by 95% between 2012 and 2017 to take over second place from the United Kingdom in the index. The Chinese Academy of Sciences is the world's leading producer of Earth and environmental sciences research in the top-tier science journals tracked by the Nature Index.

These findings are featured in the now published Nature Index 2018 Earth and Environmental Sciences supplement, Interactive map - Top 500 cities in the Earth and Environmental Sciences, which identifies the countries and institutions spearheading high-quality research efforts to understand our changing world and develop solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing humanity.

Although international collaboration on high-quality research is growing across all natural science disciplines - a trend previously identified by the Nature Index - this is particularly evident in the Earth and environmental sciences. Since 2012, this field has had the highest proportion of internationally collaborative articles in journals included in the index, and the lowest proportion of articles produced by a single institution. The supplement also highlights the highly interdisciplinary nature of Earth and environmental sciences research, with scientists working together across different fields to solve some of the complex environmental challenges facing the planet.

The leading institutions in high-quality Earth and environmental sciences research are: The Chinese Academy of Sciences (1), Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres (2), National Aeronautics and Space Administration, US (3), French National Centre for Scientific Research (4), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (5), California Institute of Technology, US (6), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, US (7), U.S. Geological Survey (8), University of Colorado Boulder, US (9) and Stanford University, US (10).

The top performing countries are: United States (1), China (2), United Kingdom (3), Germany (4), France (5), Canada (6), Australia (7), Japan (8), Switzerland (9) and the Netherlands (10). In the Nature Index tables covering all of the natural sciences, South Korea and Spain are in the top ten, but for Earth and environmental sciences only, they are displaced by Australia and the Netherlands, whose strength in this field brings them up from 11th and 14th place respectively in the overall tables.

The Nature Index 2018 Earth and Environmental Sciences supplement coincides with the addition of five journals on the subject to the index, doubling the number of articles on this topic. These additions are part of a wider update to the Nature Index database. From June 2018 author affiliation data are tracked from a revised list of journals 82 high-quality science journals, updated from 68, to provide more even coverage of disciplines.

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