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.

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.

The Open Knowledge Festival 2014 is starting soon!

To create societies where everyone has both access to key information and the ability to use it to understand and shape their lives, we must build knowledge into the heart of all of our activities. This is a big task which requires not just a global shift in mindset, but also that we build the tools and communities to make such a society possible. We invite you to join us from 15-17 July in Berlin for OKFestival 2014 as we consider how to translate Open Minds to Open Action.

The role of repositories in the future of the journal

The UK Working Group on Expanding Access to Published Research Findings, chaired by Dame Janet Finch, report, “Accessibility, sustainability, excellence: how to expand access to research publications,” helped to crystallize a long simmering debate within the open access (OA) community: should the focus for OA advocates be “green” open access – that is, the use of repositories to make research published through traditional subscription-based venues openly available – or should it be ‘gold’ open access – that is, through publication within venues that are themselves open access?

System error: Open research data and publication-driven research

Blog post on data sharing in a publication-driven academic system:
Would more researchers share data if they got more for it? Possibly. The currency does not even have to change. What is missing in the academic system is the recognition for intermediaries, also for data. Those who publish well get cited. The H-index increases and thereby the chances for professional advancement. Good articles are good for the career. Good data however are still not as important than they should be.

Microsoft Adds Momentum to “Open Science”

Momentum continues to build behind the “open science movement,” propelling the debate over publication of scholarly works and the scientific process itself. Last week, Microsoft Research announced it was adopting a policy that allows it to retain a license for research submitted to conferences or publishers in order to post it to a freely accessible online site as well. And earlier this week, pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson said it will release data from clinical trials, through an agreement with the Yale University Open Data Access Project.


It’s the Neoliberalism, Stupid: Why instrumentalist arguments for Open Access, Open Data, and Open Science are not enough.

The Open Movement has made impressive strides in the past year, but do these strides stand for reform or are they just symptomatic of the further expansion and entrenchment of neoliberalism? Eric Kansa argues that it is time for the movement to broaden its long-term strategy to tackle the needs for wider reform in the financing and organization of research and education and oppose the all-pervasive trend of universities primarily serving the needs of commerce.

LSE Impact Blog.

Opening Science to Society

From the abstract:
Cloud computing put up on established trends and offers a variety of services that can profit its customers, by means of providing quick access to their data, scalability, data storage, data recovery and guard against various hackers, and usage of the network and infrastructure conveniences for motivating the outlay exposed of the deliverance of services despite the fact that growing the speediness and suppleness with which services are organized.

Why should Ecology be open?

Third, and finally, we need to un-install Excel and similar software. What we need instead, is a pandoc for data. pandoc is a tool to convert text formats into other text formats. It's awesome. And with strict data specifications, we should be able to write one for ecology. This will allow use to store data in their correct format (i.e., conforming to the data specification), but use them in another format when we need them in another format.
Good luck with that.