Reputation instead of obligation: forging new policies to motivate academic data sharing

Despite strong support from funding agencies and policy makers academic data sharing sees hardly any adoption among researchers. Current policies that try to foster academic data sharing fail, as they try to either motivate researchers to share for the common good or force researchers to publish their data. Instead, Sascha Friesike, Benedikt Fecher, Marcel Hebing, and Stephanie Linek argue that in order to tap into the vast potential that is attributed to academic data sharing we need to forge new policies that follow the guiding principle reputation instead of obligation.

The end of subscription-based business models for academic publishing?

An evidence-based case for new publishing alternatives in academia from Science Europe.
This paper makes the strong, fact-based case for a large-scale transformation of the current corpus of scientific subscription journals to an open access business model. The existing journals, with their well-tested functionalities, should be retained and developed to meet the demands of 21st century research, while the underlying payment streams undergo a major restructuring.

The Open Publishing Revolution, Now Behind A Billion-Dollar Paywall

In 2013, when Victor Henning announced that his six-year-old startup Mendeley would be acquired by one of the world's biggest media companies, he knew there would be blowback. He just couldn't have anticipated how bad it would get. "Seeing that some of our most vocal advocates thought we had sold them out felt awful," Henning said recently over a tea in Amsterdam, where Elsevier, Mendeley's parent company, is headquartered. Launched in 2007 by Henning and two friends at graduate school, Mendeley built an unlikely but very useful piece of software—think a variation on Evernote combined with Facebook—aimed at helping researchers organize their papers, annotate them, and share them with each other.

Call for Papers – Early Stage Researchers Colloquium – 24 September 2015

We cordially invite you to submit your research projects on one of the following topics:

1. Research and knowledge in a digital age
2. Internet and public governance
3. Interdisciplinary research on information privacy, surveillance, and data protection
4. Algorithmic governance
5. Digital communication and value creation b etween companies and the crowd
Please feel invited to submit theoretical, practical or experimental research work.

For more information see: HIIG - Call for Papers

Are we addressing research data management? Diverse skillset and mindset needed for era of digital data.

Interesting post in the LSE Impact Blog:
Developing and implementing a robust solution to Research Data Management needs to draw upon policies, processes and resources and must be relevant to disciplinary requirements with as few barriers as possible for researchers. Rachel Bruce reflects on the skillset required to improve long-term research management strategies. As each university grapples with this landscape, a shift towards shared services and infrastructure may be the next step needed.

Track “Reasearch and Knowledge in a Digital Age” at the Early Stage Researcher Colloquium in Berlin

The Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society invites entries for its ESRC 2015 in Berlin. Particularly interesting for the Open Science community is the track "Research And Knowledge in a Digital Age".
The Internet offers fundamentally new premises for how knowledge is created and disseminated. Research in particular is facing massive changes in the way it produces and conveys knowledge. Scientific blogs allow communicating at a faster pace, data sharing platforms enable collaboration at an intermediate stage in the research process, and new models of participation, as for example citizen science, allow volunteers to take part in the discovery process. In this stream we welcome entries from areas such as communication science, information science, economics, and science and technology studies that cover changes and emerging practices in scholarly communication, research collaboration and access to scholarly output. We also welcome entries from related fields that cover changes in knowledge creation and dissemination.

Open Hardware for Open Science – Interview with Charles Fracchia

At this year’s SXSW Interactive, we had an opportunity to talk with [Charles Fracchia], a renaissance hacker at the MIT Media Lab. Reinforcing the Media Lab’s “eclectic genius” stereotype, [Charles]’s background spans an impressive range of fields—from Synthetic Biology to Biomedical Engineering and beyond. A biologist by training, he is also a self-taught hardware hacker and, these days, is spending most of his time building “hybrid” systems at the intersection of Biology, Computer Science, and Electrical Engineering. True to the hacker spirit of open collaboration and sharing, he is also a big proponent of Open Science and is committed to making it a reality in the field of Biomedical Research.

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.