EORI Bulletin

13/05/2022 5-minute update    

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:   

  • Last month, Vergoulis et al. (2022) launched the beta of BIP! Scholar. This is an online service that allows researchers to set up their own academic profile in accordance with Open Science guidelines for fair research assessment. One of the goals of BIP! Scholar is to curb the overreliance on performance indicators such as the h-index, which may be an inaccurate reflection of a researchers’ academic experiences. You can read more about the platform here and sign up for the beta here.  
  • Here’s an interesting article by van der Wal et al. (2022) on the merits and drawbacks of publishing academic talks online. As the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a massive shift towards online conferences, this has led to increased accessibility and reach for academic talks. However, as van der Wal et al. argue, this comes with certain ethical considerations, including data privacy, and it may also make the speaker open to persistent criticism, which could be challenging for early career researchers. Van der Wal et al. argue that the speaker should decide whether their talk is made available online. Furthermore, talks may need to be edited before they are put online to avoid ethical problems.  
  • On the topic of academic feedback, here is another interesting article by Iborra et al. (2022) on how to give constructive criticism on preprints using the FAST (Focused, Appropriate, Specific and Transparent) principle.  
  • And once again, don’t forget to sign up for Edinburgh University’s first Open Research conference on the 27th of May. It’s free to all students and staff at the University of Edinburgh, and events will be held both online and in person. The conference will feature talks and workshops on how to get started with Open Science, practical considerations in Open Science, what resources are available at the University of Edinburgh, as well as many more.  

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter.   

EORI Bulletin

29/04/2022 5-minute update   

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:  

  • Smith and Sandbrik published this interesting paper on some of the potential ethical issues with Open Science research practices in biological research.  They posit that preregistration could help encourage risk assessment in the earlier stages of the research lifecycle and call for responsible and considered data sharing and access. Here’s also a WIRED article on their paper. 
  • Here’s a great introductory resource for data visualisation with R. It’s aimed at researchers who have not used R before and features many different types of graphs and example code.  
  • And finally, don’t forget to sign up for Edinburgh University’s first Open Research conference on the 27th of May. It’s free to all students and staff at the University of Edinburgh, and events will be held both online and in person. The conference will feature talks and workshops on how to get started with Open Science, practical considerations in Open Science, what resources are available at the University of Edinburgh, as well as many more.  

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter.  

EORI Bulletin

18/03/2022 5-minute update  

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates: 

  • The Arqus European University Alliance has joined a steadily increasing number of research institutions that are committing to Open Science principles. This is a great step towards removing accessibility barriers and making scientific research easily accessible within and beyond Europe. You can read their Openness position paper here.  
  • A lawsuit in which ResearchGate was sued for hosting 50 copyrighted papers has ended inconclusively for both sides. Though ResearchGate was ruled responsible for hosting the papers, the status of any other paper hosted on the platform that may infringe with copyright law remains unclear. Still, this is a worrying precedent for the future of openly accessible research, and ResearchGate wants to appeal the decision. You can read more about the case here
  • And finally, the University of Surrey has launched its Open Research page, which hosts many valuable resources and guidelines. You can find them here

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter

EORI Bulletin

04/03/2022 – 5-minute update   

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:   

  • Open Science scholarship has revolutionised the scientific community, yet the sheer number of novel terms and concepts associated with it may be daunting for new researchers. To reduce entry barriers to open scholarship, the FORRT project has developed a community-sourced glossary of 250 relevant open scholarship terms. This is a great resource if you have ever wondered what PARKing is or what Type M errors are, and you can learn more about how the project came to be here
  • Gopalakrishna et al. (2022) published an investigation into the prevalence of questionable research practices and academic misconduct in research circles in the Netherlands. Their findings are worrying, with at least one in two researchers reporting that they frequently participate in questionable research practices, whilst one in twelve reported falsifying or fabricating their data at least once. Gopalakrishna and colleagues suggest that reducing the “publish or perish” mentality and amplifying the role of the peer reviewer in “gatekeeping” research quality and integrity may help reduce the widespread use of questionable research practices. 
  • This preprint by Steve Haroz offers a comprehensive breakdown of differences between five preregistration platforms (GitHub, AsPredicted, Zenodo, OSF (template) & OSF (open-ended)). This can help researchers make informed decisions when deciding where to preregister their study, but also highlights what information is especially vital to include in a preregistered report.  

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter

EORI Bulletin

18/02/2022 – 5-minute update  

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:  

  • A recent study by Skiles and colleagues reported that online conferences are not only good for reducing researchers’ carbon footprint, but also promote diversity and inclusion. The study found that the recent move towards online, rather than in-person, conferences has removed some of the monetary barriers for attendees, especially boosting attendance by women and early career researchers. 
  • In the future, all publicly-funded research conducted in South Africa will be published in open access journals, a draft national open science policy has revealed. The draft aims to promote positive change within the scientific culture and to increase the public benefit of funded research.
  • The Friedrich-Alexander University in Germany has become the first German university to adopt an Open Science policy. With this, the university pledges itself to promoting high-quality, transparent and open access research.  

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter

EORI Bulletin

08/02/2022 – 5-minute update 

After a break, EORI is back for the new year with our 5-minute bulletin! 

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates: 

  • Recently, NASA launched their Transform to Open Science mission. The program has designated 2023 as the Year of Open Science and aims to use Open Science principles to further accelerate scientific research and to promote the inclusion of historically excluded communities in its science program.  
  • The European University Association published its Open Science Agenda 2025. Its key priority areas are promoting open access, implementing FAIR data practices, and encouraging more responsible research assessment. The purpose of this agenda is to aid its members in the transition towards Open Science.  
  • This article covers the rise of preprints during the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting both the benefits and pitfalls of rapid data sharing. It suggests that open access data and code sharing are paramount in ensuring the quality of scientific preprints.  

The best way to get more updates is to follow EORI on Twitter

EORI Bulletin

02/08/2021 – 5-minute update

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:

  • Of significance, the European Research Council has banned grant applicants from including journal metrics when applying for grants (here). This is a welcome step forward for research being considered based on quality rather than where it’s been published. Hopefully we’ll see more of this from other funders.
  • Clinical trial data from many FDA-approved drugs are still not available (here); for 3/4 products, one or more relevant trial(s) are unavailable for independent inspection. Further, around 1/4 of these breached legal requirements. There are suggestions that the introduction of European-style legislation could help remedy this (here), and allow for relevant data to be accessible. 
  • This systematic review and meta-analysis of attempts to improve the peer review process of biomedical research. It neatly synthesises the results of various interventions, and may give us an idea of how the peer review process may change for the better in the future. 
EORI Bulletin

21/07/2021 – 5 minute update

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:

  • Here is a well laid out resources for finding information on almost all aspects of Open Science. It’s useful since it links to primers such as this one, which explains Open Peer Review in an easy to understand way, or this one on applying FAIR principles. 
  • A call to action we can all get behind! This article argues that we shouldn’t review submissions for journals which effectively profit from restricting access to knowledge – which they’ve not paid to generate – behind a paywall. I personally refuse to review for any journals which isn’t acceptably open access, and I encourage everyone else to do the same! The argument resurfaces as a new route to Open Access, Quartz Open Access, is announced. Lots to consider.
  • The Confederation of Open Access Repositories (COAR) has launched a strategy to modernise repositories (here). Plans will be developed July-Sept 2021, and will help repositories to maximise the roles they can play. It’s announced as another tool has been announced (here) for assessing alignment of biomedical data repositories with open, FAIR, citation and trustworthy principles. Additionally, this work identifies some of the barriers to data sharing through repositories and other platforms. 

The best way to get more updates is to follow EOSI on Twitter

EORI Bulletin

05/07/2021 – 5-minute update

After a brief respite, EORI is back!

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:

  • As a nice punchy start, if you’re interested in a guide to Open Science, two handbooks (here and here) contain a lot of information presented neatly about how to get cracking with Open Science & Open research practices. Considering that practicing Open Research can be a gateway to the ‘leadership table’ for ECRs, the guides can be seen as great resources to not only practice Open Science but move up the ladder because of it.
  • We’ve previously mentioned the citation advantage on Open Access. Adding to this is this study which found an increase in news media mentions of Open Access. Overall, some studies report an advantage, others report no advantage, and there’s some suggestion that it might be field dependent. Thankfully, a group as conducted a systemic review to try and explore this (here). Though not conclusive, they bring together many of the studies conducted for us all to see. 
  • In case you needed any further reasons, here’s an argument that Open research can help in the fight against climate change!

As we were off for a week, here are some quickfire mentions:

  • This work touches on some rewards for supporting Open research practices.
  • This work argues that empowering ECRs is one key to improving research quality. 
  • Finally, this work uses Game Theory to reason that publishers will converge on an Open Access publishing strategy – good news to Open Science advocates everywhere!
EORI Bulletin

07/06/2021 5-minute update

EORI keeps an eye on changes in the fields of Open Science, FAIR data principles, and others, and directs any interested parties to important updates:

  • Worryingly, but somewhat predictably, nonreplicable publications are cited more than replicable ones (here). Worse, the difference in citation rates do not change after the publication of the failure to replicate. If you’re using R, then thankfully there’s a tool/ package which has been recently developed, Easyreporting, to help reproducibility in code, but if you’re not then we need to find other ways. It’s worrying that this knowledge which is ontologically false continues to be cited and spread, like science’s equivalent of fake news. This comes as others have made a suggestion to the culture around citation: the right to refuse citations. It’s discussed as a potential reaction to being citied by predatory journals or by papers with questionable ethics/ methods etc., and they make some interesting points. 
  • Following the news, mentioned in the last update, that Clarative Analytics had bought Proquest, there’s pushback and concern from the community (here). The drive towards a monopolistic control of these systems and data is spurring calls for regulation and oversight. Considering Times higher Education’s recent call for academics to become involved in the Open Access struggle, this could be a good place to start. It also comes as SAGE journals have announced that its offering Open Peer Review using Clarative’s Web of Science portal (here), which is simultaneously a great initiative to be implemented (of which EORI thoroughly approves) and also a monopoly-building action. Hopefully this will 
  • Here’s a nice explainer behind preprints, and there’s an interesting new course dedicated to them (here). 2/3 of preprints go on to be published in journals (here), which could be suggestive of the amount of knowledge which never sees publication, or possibly of the issues which arise in 1/3 of work. Either way, accessing this data can be of great use.