Articles by author: Elizabeth Yates

  • Information for users of ResearchGate

    Users of ResearchGate, the scholarly social networking site, may notice that articles they’ve posted are no longer available. This may be due to legal action taken by the Coalition for Responsible Sharing – a  group of major academic publishers including the American Chemical Society, Brill, Elsevier, Wiley and Wolters Kluwer. Coalition members have recently begun issuing takedown notices to ResearchGate asking the network to stop the “illicit dissemination” of articles published in their journals, saying that the publishers hold copyright to these works.

    The takedown notices are the latest development in ongoing negotiations aimed at resolving publishers’ concerns with ResearchGate’s copyright violations.

    While the Coalition is targeting ResearchGate, not individual authors, you may still be interested in learning more about these issues and their implications for scholarly publishing.

    You may be also interested in how to share your work legally via open access platforms such as the Brock Digital Repository.

    The Brock Library provides support with these issues via Liaison Librarians and others with expertise in scholarly publishing issues including Scholarly Communication Librarian Elizabeth Yates and Brock’s Legal Advisor Research and Copyright, Jordan Snel.

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  • Nicola Simmons wins Brock University Award for Open Access

    Nicola Simmons, Assistant Professor of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies in Education, has won the first Brock University Award for Open Access.

    Simmons’ dedication to freely sharing the scholarship of teaching and learning includes publishing and reviewing for open access journals as well as scholarly blogging and creating the publicly accessible Annotated Literature Database for education research.

    The adjudication committee — Collections Librarian Ian Gibson, Nicole Nolan, Associate University Librarian, Research and Elizabeth Yates, Liaison/Scholarly Communication Librarian — were impressed by the high calibre of award submissions. “The breadth of Nicola’s dedication to open access made her a standout,” Yates says in a Brock News story on the award.

    “Not only is she actively publishing and reviewing for open access journals, but she is also openly engaging with the teaching and learning community via scholarly blogs and websites.”

    The award, announced during International Open Access Week, includes a grant of $2,500, which Simmons has donated to support the open access peer-reviewed Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

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  • Open access: let’s talk about costs

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    Most researchers support the principle of open access: that knowledge is a public good and should be freely shared. However, sharing freely does not always mean there are no costs involved. Publishing is expensive: funds are needed to pay for staff  who produce and edit academic books and journals and for technology and infrastructure such as websites, publishing software and servers.

    So if a journal is free to read, who pays for its publishing costs?

    There are many business models for open access journals, including advertising sales, subsidies from disciplinary societies or institutions, institutional publisher memberships and collaborative journal purchasing.  The model which attracts the most attention, however, is the use of article processing charges: journals charge authors a fee for each article they publish. These fees vary widely, ranging from a couple of hundred to several thousand dollars. About one-third of open access journals charge APCs, including journals published by major commercial firms including Elsevier, Wiley, Taylor and Francis, and SpringerNature.

    Article processing charges (APCs) are seen as a major barrier to open access. Researchers, particularly those who do not receive grant funding, may struggle to pay these fees. Some institutions offer grant programs to assist with APCs, but find it impossible to meet the full costs of APCs for all of their researchers.

    Brock’s Library Open Access Publishing Fund was established in 2011 as an educational initiative, aimed at raising awareness of open access and helping Brock researchers who choose to publish in journals which charge APCs. Since then, the fund has distributed 27 grants of up to $2,500 each to cover APCs for Brock researchers. The Library recently collected metrics, including citations, which demonstrate the impressive reach of these open access articles.

    While publishing in an open access journal is one route to open access, it’s important to note that researchers can freely share their work – for free – via online archives, such as the Brock Digital Repository. These archives are free to use and their contents are indexed n Google Scholar, making Brock scholars’ work available to everyone around the globe.

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  • Open in order to … increase access to knowledge

    The idea that society is enriched by the free sharing of knowledge and that the public has the right to access taxpayer-funded research is a major motivation for open scholarship. The concept of knowledge as a public good was a main driver for researchers who drafted the original Budapest Open Access Initiative in 2002:

    Removing access barriers to … (scholarly) literature will accelerate research, enrich education, share the learning of the rich with the poor and the poor with the rich, make this literature as useful as it can be, and lay the foundation for uniting humanity in a common intellectual conversation and quest for knowledge.”

    During this celebration of International Open Access Week, we can acknowledge that many barriers remain before those lofty goals are achieved. But the rapid growth in open access literature – now occupying at least 20% of the scholarly publishing sphere – demonstrates that researchers are increasingly embracing the principles of open access. Here at Brock, for example, a majority of faculty surveyed in 2014 agreed that their research should be freely available to all readers.

    Free access is particularly important in less wealthy nations, where researchers as well as the public may not be able to afford costly subscription journals. For example, Brock University Professor Ana Sanchez prioritizes freely sharing her research on tropical diseases affecting poor residents of developing countries.

    Health Sciences professor Ana Sanchez

    “Because it was open, my article reflects the very same principles of my research work: knowledge should serve the people who need it the most,” Sanchez says of Soil-transmitted helminth infections and nutritional status in school-age children from rural communities in Honduras. Published in 2013 in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases – with funding support from the Library Open Access Publishing Fund – this article has attracted more than 8,300 views and 1,300 downloads.

    Learn more about open access – and win a sweet prize! – on Thursday at the Open Access Fact or Fiction Prize Wheel in the Learning Commons, 11 am-12 pm.

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  • Open Access in order to … Collaborate

    Two figures with arrows pointing at each other

    Research is becoming increasingly transdisciplinary and collaborative: it’s common for people located at several different institutions to partner on the same study. But varying levels of access to subscription journal literature can make it tough for everyone on the same research team to access the same articles they all need.

    Open access removes those barriers so that scholarly literature is free for anyone, anywhere – thus making it easier for researchers to collaborate, wherever they are. Open access can also spark entirely new partnerships: let’s say someone just happens to find your study freely available online, realizes you share the same research interests and gets in touch to talk about working together.

    Image of Bareket Falk

    Kinesiology professor Bareket Falk

    Even when open access may not directly influence a research project, it continues to advance the scholarly conversation. An article that’s open is thus open for commentary – as experienced by Brock Kinesiology professor Bareket Falk, who received a grant from the Library Open Access Publishing Fund to help publish an article in the open access journal Scoliosis.

    “Because it was open, it may have attracted more attention. It is difficult to tell,” said Falk. “Nevertheless, a commentary (letter to the editor) was published on the topic and we were invited to comment.”

    Open Access week events continue. Don’t miss today’s live stream presentation by Canada Research Chair and copyright scholar Michael Geist @ 12:40 in ST1126.

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  • New award for Brock open access champion

    A new award recognizes the potential of open access to broaden the reach of Brock research and transform scholarly publishing.

    Launched in advance of  International Open Access Week, the Brock University Award for Open Access  recognizes a Brock community member who is a champion of freely sharing scholarship with audiences around the globe. In addition to enhancing public access to publicly-funded research, open access benefits both individual researchers and their institutions by promoting higher citation counts, increased community impact and enhanced opportunities for collaboration.

    “The benefits of open access for research dissemination are huge,” said University Librarian Mark Robertson.  “We’re excited to host an award that recognizes the important role that Brock researchers play in championing open access in this changing landscape.”

    Open to Brock University faculty, librarians, staff and students, the $2,500 award may be used to either pay an article processing charge for an open access journal or donated to support a non-profit platform for open scholarship.

    Open Access, which refers to scholarly digital content that is free to the end user, is a dramatic evolution in how scholarship is disseminated: for centuries, published research has only been available to institutions or individuals who can afford to pay costly fees to access subscription journals.

    “Open access opens up knowledge to everyone,” said Elizabeth Yates, Liaison/Scholarly Communication Librarian. “We want to honour those at Brock who are helping shape a more sustainable and democratic system of scholarly communication.”

    Applications, including a nomination statement and supporting documentation, must be submitted by Oct. 13 at 12 pm. A winner will be announced during Open Access Week, Oct. 23-27.

     

     

     

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  • Brock Librarians strengthen support for Open Access

    Brock Librarians are leading by example as champions of open scholarship with a new commitment to freely share the results of their scholarly activities.

    Under Library Council’s new Open Access Policy, librarians will strive to practice Open Access by:

    • Depositing their scholarly outputs in the Brock Digital Repository or other appropriate subject/institutional repository
    • Publishing in open access journals whenever feasible
    • Openly disseminating any scholarly non-textual outputs
    • Advocating for open publishing in their work as editors, reviewers and authors
    • Assisting all Brock researchers, including their library colleagues, to make their research openly available

    “This policy statement reflects Library Council’s support for the importance of openness,” said Ian Gibson, chair of Library Council, “while respecting the academic freedom of Librarians to publish in the manner they feel is most appropriate for their work.”

    Open Access has many benefits, including broadening the reach of Brock research, enhancing opportunities for collaboration and promoting new models of freely sharing scholarship. It also ensures publicly funded research is freely available to the public.

    Questions? Please contact Elizabeth Yates, Liaison/Scholarly Communication Librarian ~ eyates@brocku.ca

     

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  • Library Open Access Publishing Fund opens for 2017-18

    The Library Open Access Publishing Fund is now accepting applications for 2017-18.

    The fund, established in 2011, raises awareness of the benefits of open access to scholarly research and helps Brock authors broaden the reach of their research. The fund allows Brock researchers to apply for grants to cover the costs of article-processing charges levied by some open access journals. The fund – increased to $15,000 for 2017-18 – provides maximum grants of $2,500 CDN per author.

    While article-processing charges (APCs) are not a sustainable business model to transform scholarly publishing, in some cases Brock researchers may feel that publishing in open access journals with APCs is the best way to make their publications publicly accessible. The Library, as a partner in disseminating Brock scholarship, demonstrates its commitment to open access by financially supporting the publishing fund and several other initiatives.

    Many other venues allow researchers to achieve open access, including the Brock Digital Repository, a publicly accessible online archive where Brock scholars can make their work accessible to everyone around the globe — for free.

    The Library also invests in open access memberships with several publishers which provide discounted APCs for members of the Brock community. And we financially support the development of innovative open access platforms for scholarship, including Erudit, the Directory of Open Access Journals and the Public Knowledge Project.

    The Library also provides local support for several peer-reviewed open access journals via Scholarly Journals at Brock; we welcome more publications to join the platform.

    Questions? Contact Elizabeth Yates, Scholarly Communication Librarian, at eyates@brocku.ca or 905-688-5550 x4469.

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