Blogs selected for Week May 4 to May 10, 2020 -



1. Guest Post – The megajournal lifecycle

Megajournals have been at the heart of the Open Access (OA) publishing model, spearheading its growth over the last 15 years. Titles such as PLOS ONE and Scientific Reports have been enormously influential and commercially successful. Nonetheless, the commercial success of megajournals is not guaranteed and their long-term performance has been occasionally unreliable, introducing uncertainty in an industry that has been particularly attractive to investors for its ability to generate low but sustainable growth. Regarding the megajournals, the data suggests some loss of citability for Scientific Reports that may eventually be reflected on its JIF. Christos Petrou looks at megajournal performance and the resulting business implications.

The full entry can be read: Here.

2. Transparency, Openness and Peer Review

As the first OA publisher, BMC has been a pioneer in the publishing sector. Openness is one of BMC’s hallmarks, and the promotion of a fair, efficient and transparent approach to the peer review process has been inherent in its process from the start. BMC has supported innovation in peer review, and introduced open peer review in 1999 and has continued to experiment with different peer review models over the past two decades, including double-blind peer review, results-free peer review and portable peer review. In its 20th year of publishing, BMC has taken the opportunity to consider how best to align its mission of promoting transparency in peer review with dedication to providing research community with better tailored services to support needs, development and engagement with the journals.

The full entry can be read: Here.

3. A selfish reason to share research data

As many of us adapt to the benefits of remaining connected with our peers and colleagues digitally, new evidence suggests that scholarly papers might get increased citations by staying digitally connected to the research data that support their results. To promote open, reproducible research, many journals have started to encourage or even mandate that researchers share their research data and provide statements about the availability of their data in their published papers. The Data Availability Statements (DAS’s) in published papers provide a way to study if and how researchers share their data, and if data sharing correlates with citations of research. Researchers are concerned that there are insufficient resources and incentives to share their research data, and that more effort is required to publish data when publishing papers.

The full entry can be read: Here.

4. Simple data visualisations have become key to communicating about the COVID-19 pandemic, but we know little about their impact

If you had mentioned ‘flattening the curve’ in 2019, chances are you would have been met with a blank stare. However, almost halfway through 2020, the language of data visualisation has become commonplace, and data visualisations are widely used to communicate about the pandemic to the public. However, as Helen Kennedy observes, their power to influence the public is still little understood.

The full entry can be read: Here.

5. Driving responsibly with Identity Management (Part 1)

In the wake of the global coronavirus pandemic, the scholarly communications industry is painfully aware the existence in a heavily networked economy where learners and researchers enter into their workflows with expectations built by experiences with consumer content and services. Given the increased pressure to deliver effective, reliable distance learning and off-campus access to library resources, the time is ripe for scholarly publishers to consider a comprehensive identity strategy. The Covid-19 pandemic is driving more users to online resources, as accesses to physical facilities are limited or unavailable. Few scholarly publishers make effective use of identity management, but we should — and now is a good time to consider a comprehensive identity strategy.

The full entry can be read: Here.

6. How we are supporting research dealing with COVID-19

The spread of the COVID-19 virus has presented unparalleled challenges for academia and research, and Jisc is supporting research during the pandemic. As universities across the UK and the world have halted teaching activities, closed campuses and moved to online forms of working, individuals have had to make major changes. Rest assured to provide a range of services to support members working in research. This includes the Janet Network, the UK’s only dedicated research and education network that interconnects with other global research and education networks. Jisc is prioritising e-rinfrasture support for national and international collaborative research initiatives and has delivered enhanced connectivity to several COVID-19 research projects.

The full entry can be read: Here.

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