Get Them Involved: Citizen Science @GOR Conference

Citizen science describes research activities (e.g., data collection) that are conducted by people who are not professional scientists. Thanks to the internet, citizen science has gained a new dimension: digital technologies offer possibilities to reach out to volunteer researchers, to pool together efforts and to make the results visible. Moreover, the collective power of the crowd provides scientists with data that they could not have collected on their own. Integrating citizens into research projects is apparently a valuable strategy for scientists. Motivating volunteers to invest time in citizen science projects appears challenging.

LSE Impact Blog: Academia is a Reputation Economy

Short summary of the paper " A Reputation Economy: Results from an Empirical Survey on Academic Data Sharing" in the LSE Blog. (two of our editors are co-authors)
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.

Moving Beyond the PDF: The RG Format Leads Scholars Into the Social Age

ResearchGate a social networking site for researchers, is perhaps making the biggest splash in linking research and our evolving social context. Utilized by over six million researchers, ResearchGate just released their new RG Format in mid-February which creates real-time social dialogue within the research document. By using two columns of information display, comments, concerns, or related citations and graphs are always in sync with the information retrieved. This makes for a more streamlined information transfer, and one that elaborates on the author's views by harnessing knowledge by the collective crowd.

What drives academic data sharing?

Benedikt Fecher, Sascha Friesike and Marcel Hebing in an PLOS article on what drives data sharing in academia.
We show that this process can be divided into six descriptive categories: Data donor, research organization, research community, norms, data infrastructure, and data recipients. Drawing from our findings, we discuss theoretical implications regarding knowledge creation and dissemination as well as research policy measures to foster academic collaboration. We conclude that research data cannot be regarded as knowledge commons, but research policies that better incentivise data sharing are needed to improve the quality of research results and foster scientific progress.

New DIW working paper out: Academia as a reputation economy

The results for 1564 valid responses show that researchers across disciplines recognise the benefit of secondary research data for their own work and for scientific progress as a whole—still they only practice it in moderation. An explanation for this evidence could be an academic system that is not driven by monetary incentives, nor the desire for scientific progress, but by individual reputation—expressed in (high ranked journal) publications. We label this system a Reputation Economy. This special economy explains our findings that show that researchers have a nuanced idea how to provide adequate formal recognition for making data available to others—namely data citations. We conclude that data sharing will only be widely adopted among research professionals if sharing pays in form of reputation. Thus, policy measures that intend to foster research collaboration need to understand academia as a reputation economy. Successful measures must value intermediate products, such as research data, more highly than it is the case now.

Young European Associated Researchers (YEAR) Conference

“Sharing is caring“! This is probably a good way to describe what Open Science really means: a new approach to science to share ideas, research results, research data, and publications with the rest of the world, through the newly available network technologies.

The YEAR Annual Conference is a two-day event for young researchers, which offers a platform for exchange and training focused on key aspects of EU projects. For the 2015 edition, co-funded by FOSTER, YEAR chooses to focus the conference on Open Science in Horizon 2020.

Open Science @ “Grenzwertig”

Offene Wissenschaft: Potenziale und Grenzen

Digitale Technologien bringen eine neue Dimension in den Wissensschaffungsprozess. Wissenschaftlerinnen können über Grenzen und Zeitzonen hinweg zusammenarbeiten. Wissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse können online zugänglich gemacht werden. Die Grenzen zwischen Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft, und Gesellschaft sind nicht mehr starr.  Aber was passiert wenn Wissenschaft transparent wird? Was sind die Potenziale und wo sind die Grenzen?

New Open Glossary

This is a resource designed to equip people with the terminology that is used within discussions about the general field of open scholarship. Additionally, it possesses numerous external resources that may be of use.

Jon Tennant

Why sharing clinical data should be the expected norm

unfortunately closed access
The Institute of Medicine (IOM), a venerable American institution that seeks to provide authoritative recommendations to decision makers and the public, released a report last month on Sharing Clinical Trial Data.1 The report is a welcome codification of guiding principles and frameworks. It reinforces many arguments for data sharing and urges that stakeholders “should foster a culture in which data sharing is the expected norm.” The IOM joins many other organizations, including drug companies, the European Medicines Agency, the National Institutes of Health, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, in making clear that study reporting and data sharing in medical research are imperative and the questions ahead are how, not whether.

10 steps you can take to make sure you contribute to a culture shift towards open science.

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

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 organization, sample naming schemes, backup plans, and quality control measures, many hours of heartache can be averted.

A Philosophy of Data Science

The epistemological aspect that interests me most, however, is even more fundamental. Given the central role of data in making scientific research into a distinctive, legitimate and non-dogmatic source of knowledge, I view the study of data-intensive science as offering the opportunity to raise foundational questions about the nature of knowledge and knowledge-making activities and interventions. Scientific research is often presented as the most systematic set of efforts in the contemporary world aimed to critically explore and debate what constitutes acceptable and sufficient evidence for any given belief about reality.

An Open Science Peer Review Oath

Open science is a movement that seeks to ensure that the results and the data of scientific research are, and continue to be, available to all. One way in which reproducibility issues can be tackled is through the use of open-science and open-data practices. As attendees of the AllBio: Open Science & Reproducibility Best Practice Workshop, we discussed how the problem of keeping science transparent and reproducible in an increasingly technology-driven, and specialised, domain could be addressed.
One route, at the heart of scientific endeavour, is through the peer-review process.

Springer and Macmillan. A Marriage Made in Heaven?

Holtzbrinck Publishing announces agreement to merge majority of Macmillan Science and Education with Springer Science+Business Media.

This is a strategic transaction by Holtzbrinck and BCP aimed at securing the long-term growth of both businesses. It will create a leading global science and education publishing house with the opportunity to better serve its authors, the research community, academic institutions, learned societies and corporate research departments, as well as to extend its reach within the education and learning markets.

Most participants in “citizen science” projects give up almost immediately

John Timmer summarizes some challenges of citizen science
And while the citizen scientists could clearly save the working scientists some money, the authors suggest that this shouldn't really be the only goal. "Involving the crowd may enable researchers to pursue different kinds of research questions and approaches, rather than simply replacing one type of labor (e.g., graduate students) with another (volunteers)."