bims-skolko Biomed News
on Scholarly communication
Issue of 2020‒09‒27
thirty-one papers selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society

  1. PLoS Biol. 2020 Sep;18(9): e3000860
      Engagement with scientific manuscripts is frequently facilitated by Twitter and other social media platforms. As such, the demographics of a paper's social media audience provide a wealth of information about how scholarly research is transmitted, consumed, and interpreted by online communities. By paying attention to public perceptions of their publications, scientists can learn whether their research is stimulating positive scholarly and public thought. They can also become aware of potentially negative patterns of interest from groups that misinterpret their work in harmful ways, either willfully or unintentionally, and devise strategies for altering their messaging to mitigate these impacts. In this study, we collected 331,696 Twitter posts referencing 1,800 highly tweeted bioRxiv preprints and leveraged topic modeling to infer the characteristics of various communities engaging with each preprint on Twitter. We agnostically learned the characteristics of these audience sectors from keywords each user's followers provide in their Twitter biographies. We estimate that 96% of the preprints analyzed are dominated by academic audiences on Twitter, suggesting that social media attention does not always correspond to greater public exposure. We further demonstrate how our audience segmentation method can quantify the level of interest from nonspecialist audience sectors such as mental health advocates, dog lovers, video game developers, vegans, bitcoin investors, conspiracy theorists, journalists, religious groups, and political constituencies. Surprisingly, we also found that 10% of the preprints analyzed have sizable (>5%) audience sectors that are associated with right-wing white nationalist communities. Although none of these preprints appear to intentionally espouse any right-wing extremist messages, cases exist in which extremist appropriation comprises more than 50% of the tweets referencing a given preprint. These results present unique opportunities for improving and contextualizing the public discourse surrounding scientific research.
  2. Access Microbiol. 2019 ;1(2): e000013
    Keywords:  editorial policy; peer review; preprint; social media
  3. J Contin Educ Nurs. 2020 Oct 01. 51(10): 447-449
      To serve as leaders in the broader health care system, nurses must have the capacity to write confidently and communicate innovations in clinical practices and outcomes to multiple stakeholders. This article describes the importance of publishing for nurses and guides professional development educators to develop supportive organizational cultures that foster writing for publication. [J Contin Educ Nurs. 2020;51(10):447-449.].
  4. BMJ Open. 2020 Sep 21. 10(9): e036899
      OBJECTIVES: To investigate authors' awareness and use of authorship guidelines, and to assess their perceptions of the fairness of authorship decisions.DESIGN: A cross-sectional online survey.
    SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Corresponding authors of research papers submitted in 2014 to 18 BMJ journals.
    RESULTS: 3859/12 646 (31%) researchers responded. They worked in 93 countries and varied in research experience. Of these, 1326 (34%) reported their institution had an authorship policy providing criteria for authorship; 2871 (74%) were 'very familiar' with the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors' authorship criteria and 3358 (87%) reported that guidelines were beneficial when preparing manuscripts. Furthermore, 2609 (68%) reported that their use was 'sometimes' or 'frequently' encouraged in their research setting. However, 2859 respondents (74%) reported that they had been involved in a study at least once where someone was added as an author who had not contributed substantially (honorary authorship), and 1305 (34%) where someone was not listed as an author but had contributed substantially (ghost authorship). Only 740 (19%) reported that they had never experienced either honorary or ghost authorship; 1115 (29%) reported that they had experienced both at least once. There was no clear pattern in experience of authorship misappropriation by continent. For their last coauthored article, 2187 (57%) reported that explicit authorship criteria had been used to determine eligibility, and 3088 (80%) felt that the decision made was fair. When institutions frequently encouraged use of authorship guidelines, authorship eligibility was more likely to be discussed early (817 of 1410, 58%) and perceived as fairer (1273 of 1410, 90%) compared with infrequent encouragement (974 of 2449, 40%, and 1891 of 2449, 74%).
    CONCLUSIONS: Despite a high level of awareness of authorship guidelines and criteria, these are not so widely used; more explicit encouragement of their use by institutions may result in more favourable use of guidelines by authors.
    Keywords:  education & training (see medical education & training); ethics (see medical Ethics); protocols & guidelines; public health
  5. Genetics. 2020 Sep 25. pii: genetics.303730.2020. [Epub ahead of print]
  6. Res Integr Peer Rev. 2020 ;5 13
      Background: Inaccurate citations are erroneous quotations or instances of paraphrasing of previously published material that mislead readers about the claims of the cited source. They are often unaddressed due to underreporting, the inability of peer reviewers and editors to detect them, and editors' reluctance to publish corrections about them. In this paper, we propose a new tool that could be used to tackle their circulation.Methods: We provide a review of available data about inaccurate citations and analytically explore current ways of reporting and dealing with these inaccuracies. Consequently, we make a distinction between publication (i.e., first occurrence) and circulation (i.e., reuse) of inaccurate citations. Sloppy reading of published items, literature ambiguity and insufficient quality control in the editorial process are identified as factors that contribute to the publication of inaccurate citations. However, reiteration or copy-pasting without checking the validity of citations, paralleled with lack of resources/motivation to report/correct inaccurate citations contribute to their circulation.
    Results and discussion: We propose the development of an online annotation tool called "MyCites" as means with which to mark and map inaccurate citations. This tool allows ORCID users to annotate citations and alert authors (of the cited and citing articles) and also editors of journals where inaccurate citations are published. Each marked citation would travel with the digital version of the document (persistent identifiers) and be visible on websites that host peer-reviewed articles (journals' websites, Pubmed, etc.). In the future development of MyCites, challenges such as the conditions of correct/incorrect-ness and parties that should adjudicate that, and, the issue of dealing with incorrect reports need to be addressed.
    Keywords:  Annotations; Editorial process; Inaccurate citations; Post-publication peer-review; Research integrity; Responsibilities
  7. Elife. 2020 Sep 23. pii: e60829. [Epub ahead of print]9
      Early-career researchers (ECRs) make up a large portion of the academic workforce. Yet, most leadership positions in scientific societies are held by senior scientists, and ECRs have little to no say over the decisions that will shape the future of research. This article looks at the level of influence ECRs have in 20 scientific societies based in the US and UK, and provides guidelines on how societies can successfully include ECRs in leadership roles.
    Keywords:  early-career researchers; none; research culture; scientific societies
  8. Lancet. 2020 09 19. pii: S0140-6736(20)31954-1. [Epub ahead of print]396(10254): 799
  9. Cancer Res Treat. 2020 Sep 21.
      In recent decades, the volume of scholarly literature worldwide has increased significantly, and open-access publishing has become commonplace. These changes are even more dominant in South Korea. Comparing the periods of 1981-2000 and 2001-2020, the number of medical articles produced in Korea increased by 16.8 times on the Web of Science platform (13,223 to 222,771 papers). Before 1990, almost no open-access articles were produced in South Korea, but in the last 10 years open-access publications came to account for almost 40% of all South Korean publications on Web of Science. Along with the expansion of literature and the development of open-access publishing, predatory journals that seek profit without conducting quality assurance have appeared and undermined the academic corpus. In this rapidly changing environment, medical researchers have begun contemplating publication standards. In this article, recent trends in academic publishing are examined from international and South Korean perspectives, and the significance of open-access publishing and recent changes are discussed. Practical methods that can be used to select legitimate publishers, including open-access journals, and identify predatory journals are also discussed.
    Keywords:  Beall’s list; Directory of Open Access Journals; Medical research; Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association; Open access; Predatory
  10. Pak J Med Sci. 2020 Sep-Oct;36(6):36(6): 1408-1411
      Young researchers and novice authors face lot of difficulties to document their research work and get it published due to lack of guidance and proper training in the art of scientific writing. This manuscript provides some important information and highlights some useful tips for novice authors which if followed in letter and spirit will minimize the trauma to their manuscripts with increased chances of publication in standard peer reviewed biomedical journals even those with Impact Factor. Other authors will also find it helpful to know the details related to the whole publishing process.
    Keywords:  Scientific Writing
  11. J Exp Biol. 2020 Sep 24. pii: jeb237248. [Epub ahead of print]223(Pt 18):
  12. Development. 2020 Sep 24. pii: dev196824. [Epub ahead of print]147(18):
  13. Am J Med. 2020 Sep 17. pii: S0002-9343(20)30794-4. [Epub ahead of print]
      The current COVID-19 pandemic has exerted an unprecedented impact across the globe. As a consequence of this overwhelming catastrophe, long established prevailing medical and scientific paradigms have been disrupted. The response of the scientific community, medical journals, media and some politicians, has been far from ideal. The present manuscript discusses the failure of the scientific enterprise in its initiatives to address the COVID-19 outbreak, as a consequence of the disarray attributable to haste and urgency. To enhance conveying our message, this manuscript is organized in three interrelated sections: 1) the accelerated pace of publications coupled with a dysfunctional review process; 2) failure of the clinical trial enterprise; 3) propagation of misleading information by the media. In response we propose a template comprising a focus on randomized-controlled clinical trials, and an insistence on responsible journal publication, and enumeration of policies to deal with social media-propagated news. We conclude with a reconsideration of the appropriate role of academic medicine and journals.
    Keywords:  COVID-19; scientific community, medical journals, media
  14. Int J Health Sci (Qassim). 2020 Sep-Oct;14(5):14(5): 43-49
      Objective: Publications are the cornerstone of the dissemination of scientific innovation and scholarly work, but published works are mostly behind paywalls. Therefore, many researchers and institutions are searching for alternative models for disseminating scholarly work that bypasses the current structure of paywalls. This study aimed to determine whether a self-published open access (OA) journal, the International Journal of Health Sciences (IJHS), has been able to reach a global audience in terms of authorship, readership, and impact using the OA model.Methods: All IJHS articles were retrieved and analyzed using scientometric methods. Using the keywords from abstracts and titles, unsupervised clustering was performed to map research trends. Network analysis was used to chart the network of collaboration. The analysis of articles' metadata and the visualizations was performed using R programming language.
    Results: Using Google Scholar as a source, the general statistics of IJHS from inception to 2019 showed that the average citation per article was 11.29, and the impact factor of the journal was 2.28. The results demonstrate the obvious local and global impact of a locally published journal that allows unrestricted OA and uses an open source publishing platform. The journal's success at attracting diverse topics, authors, and readers is a testament to the power of the OA model.
    Conclusions: Open source is feasible and rewarding and enables a global reach for research from under-represented regions. Local journals can help the Global South disseminate their scholarly work, which is frequently ignored by commercial and established publications.
    Keywords:  Global impact; International Journal of Health Sciences; Open Access Journals; scientometric methods
  15. Cureus. 2020 Aug 17. 12(8): e9798
      Background Meta-analysis of simulation teaching has shown to be an effective teaching methodology. The Association for Simulated Practice in Healthcare (ASPIH) annual international, multidisciplinary conference is recognised as the leading UK meeting for simulation-based education. We hypothesise that simulation-based research presented at this conference is currently less accessible than more traditional clinical research presentations. Method We reviewed the abstracts of all research presented at the 5th ASPIH Conference, 2014 and then utilised the Bhandari methodology to assess whether an abstract had subsequently been published in a peer review journal. Our secondary aim was to assess for recurring themes that may predict publication. Results Twenty-seven of 197 (14%) abstracts presented at the 2014 meeting were subsequently published. The mean lead time to publication from the conference was 23 (2 - 61) months. Two positive predictive factors for publication were oral presentations (vs poster), and a Kirkpatrick level above 1. Conclusion The publication rate for abstracts from respected clinical conferences is 30%, but the publication rate for ASPIH abstracts is significantly below this. The potential reasons for this may include a lack of simulation specific journals. Authors should aim to publish simulation-based research in peer reviewed publications to help progress the role and the value of simulation in medical education.
    Keywords:  higher education medical training; research methodology; simulation medicine; skills and simulation training
  16. J Clin Nurs. 2020 Sep 22.
      Do you have a PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) or a PhD (Predatory Hoax Doctorate)? To even ask such a question is a mark of just how perilous the situation with predatory journals has become and the very real threat they pose to academic standards. The grave concerns regarding the metastatic erosion and 'pollution' (Watson, 2018) caused by the exponential growth (Perlin et al., 2018) of predatory publishers, their duplicitous practices, fake conferences and more (Grove, 2017) cannot be overstated (Darbyshire et al., 2016). Given what Nature has called, 'The coronavirus publishing frenzy' (Callaway, 2020), it is very likely that even more pop-up predatory journals will emerge to take money from all of those academics desperate to have their COVID-19 related papers published.
  17. Ci Ji Yi Xue Za Zhi. 2020 Jul-Sep;32(3):32(3): 240-244
      In today's world, when there is a rapid surge of biomedical publications, maintaining research integrity of articles is of prime importance. It is expected that the submitted work is genuine of submitting authors'. Ease in the availability of these digitally published biomedical papers and pressure to publish for academic and professional advancement had resulted in numerous novice scientists and students falling into unethical practice of plagiarizing others' work to get the job done quickly. Plagiarists are continuously in search of finding new and easy ways to plagiarize someone else's work, currently seen as different forms of plagiarism. Hence, this narrative review intends to help young and upcoming researchers to understand plagiarism, its type, the reason for plagiarists getting involved in that, and possible ways to detect and prevent it.
    Keywords:  Bioethics; Editorial policies; Medical writing; Plagiarism; Scientific misconduct
  18. Lancet Glob Health. 2020 Sep 17. pii: S2214-109X(20)30416-2. [Epub ahead of print]
  19. Prog Orthod. 2020 Sep 21. 21(1): 31
      BACKGROUND: To describe the impact of research, beyond the limits of the academic environment, Altmetric, a new social and traditional media metric was proposed. The aims of this study were to analyze the online activity related to orthodontic research via Altmetric and to assess if a correlation exists among citations, Mendeley reader count, and the AAS (Altmetric Attention Score).METHOD: The Dimensions App was searched for articles published in the orthodontic journals listed in the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) throughout the years 2014 to 2018. The articles with a positive AAS were collected and screened for data related to publication and authorship. The articles with an AAS higher than 5 were screened for research topic and study design. Citation counts were harvested from Web of Science (WOS) and Scopus.
    RESULTS: The best performing journals were Progress in Orthodontics and the European Journal of Orthodontics with a mean AAS per published item of 1.455 and 1.351, respectively and the most prevalent sources were Tweets and Facebook mentions. The most prevalent topic was Oral Health-Related Quality of Life (OHRQOL) and the study design was systematic reviews. The correlation between the AAS and the citations in both WOS and Scopus was poor (r = 0.1463 and r = 0.1508, p < .05). The correlation between citations count and Mendeley reader (r = 0.6879 and r = 0.697, p < .05) was moderate.
    CONCLUSIONS: Few journals displayed a high level of web activity. Journals and editors should enhance online dissemination of the scientific outputs. The authors should report the impact of the findings to the general public in a convenient way to facilitate online dissemination but to avoid an opportunistic use of the research outputs. Despite the lack of correlation, a combination of the citation count and the AAS can give a more comprehensive assessment of research impact.
    Keywords:  Altmetrics; Bibliometric; Citations count; Mendeley; Social media
  20. Cureus. 2020 Aug 21. 12(8): e9927
      IMPORTANCE:  In today's climate of high healthcare costs and limited research resources, much attention has been given to inefficiency in research. Open access to research data has been proposed as a way to pool resources and make the most of research funding while also promoting transparency and scientific rigor.  Objective: The clinical neurosciences stand to benefit greatly from the potential opportunities afforded by open data, and we sought to evaluate the current state of publicly available research findings and data sharing policies within the clinical neurosciences.  Design: The Clarivate Analytics Web of Science journal citation reports for 2017 were used to sort journals in the category 'Clinical Neurosciences' by impact factor. The top 50 journals were selected and reviewed, but data was only collected from journals focused on original research (42/50). For each journal we reviewed the 10 most recent original research articles for 2016, 2017, and 2018 as designated by Scopus.  Results: A data sharing policy existed for 60% (25/42) of the journals reviewed. Of the articles studied 41% (517/1255) contained source data, and the amount of articles with available source data increased from 2016 to 2018. Of all the articles reviewed, 49.4% (620/1255) were open access. Overall, 6.9% (87/1255) of articles had their source data accessible outside of the manuscript (e.g. registries, databases, etc.) and 8.9% (112/1255) addressed the availability of their source data within the publication itself. The availability of source data outside the manuscript and in-article discussion of source data availability both increased from 2016 to 2018. Only 3.9% (49/1255) of articles reviewed reported negative results for their primary outcome, and 7.6% (95/1255) of the articles could not be defined as primarily reporting positive or negative findings (characterization studies, census reporting, etc.). The distribution of negative versus positive results reported showed no significant trend over the years studied.  Conclusion and Relevance: Our results demonstrate an opportunity for increased data sharing in neuroscience original research. These findings also suggest a trend towards increased adoption of open data sharing policies among journals and increased availability of unprocessed data in publications. This can increase the quality and speed at which new research is developed in the clinical neurosciences.
    Keywords:  data sharing; open access
  21. Laryngoscope. 2020 Sep 21.
      OBJECTIVES: During a public health crisis, it is important for medical journals to share information in a timely manner while maintaining a robust peer-review process. This review reports and analyzes The Laryngoscope's publication trends and practices during the COVID-19 pandemic, before the COVID-19 pandemic, and during previous pandemics.METHODS: Comprehensive review of two databases (PubMed and The Laryngoscope) was performed. COVID-19 manuscripts (published in The Laryngoscope during the first 4 months of the pandemic) were identified and compared to manuscripts pertaining to historic pandemics (published in The Laryngoscope during the first 2 years of each outbreak). Keywords included "The Laryngoscope," "flu," "pandemic," "influenza," "SARS," "severe acute respiratory syndrome," "coronavirus," "COVID-19," and "SARS-CoV-2." Data were obtained from The Laryngoscope to characterize publication trends during and before the COVID-19 pandemic.
    RESULTS: From March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020, The Laryngoscope had 203 COVID-19 submissions. As of July 8, 2020, 20 (9.9%) were accepted, 117 (57.6%) under review, and 66 (32.5%) rejected. During the first 4 months of the pandemic, 18 COVID-19 manuscripts were published. Mean number of days from submission to online publication was 45, compared to 170 in 2018 and 196 in 2019. A total of 4 manuscripts concerning previous pandemics were published during the initial 2 years of each outbreak.
    CONCLUSIONS: The Laryngoscope rapidly disseminated quality publications during the COVID-19 pandemic by upholding a robust peer-review process while expediting editorial steps, highlighting relevant articles online, and providing open access to make COVID-19-related publications available as quickly as possible. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  COVID‐19; SARS‐CoV‐2; pandemic; peer‐review; public health crisis; publication; research
  22. Pan Afr Med J. 2020 ;36 212
      Introduction: health professionals are involved in research as researchers themselves and as supervisors to undergraduate and postgraduate students. Authors may have unrealistic expectations regarding journal submission and review processes. The study aimed to describe journal response types and times for manuscripts finalised for submission by the University of the Free State School of Medicine medical editor.Methods: this descriptive cohort study with an analytical component included all manuscripts finalised for submission to accredited journals by the medical editor, 2014-2017. Excel spreadsheets capturing all stages of the manuscript process were used to confidentially note information regarding submission and subsequent journal responses.
    Results: ninety-five manuscripts were submitted to 72 peer-reviewed accredited journals. The total number of submissions was 163. Only 46 (48.4%) manuscripts were accepted by the first journals submitted to. Rejected submissions (n=82) had a median journal response time of 15.5 days (range 0-381 days), with a third being sent for review. Nine manuscripts were accepted with no revisions needed. Accepted submissions (n=72) had a median of one round of revision (range 0-4 rounds), and a median time of 119.5 days (range 0-674 days) from submission to final acceptance.
    Conclusion: within our setting, half of first submissions were unsuccessful, but rejection usually occurred rapidly. Acceptance for publication occurred at a median time of 4 months after one round of revision. If health professionals were made aware of expected outcomes and response times, it may prevent authors from falling victim to the publication practices of predatory journals.
    Keywords:  Peer-reviewed journals; expectations; journal response; outcomes; submission
  23. J Nepal Health Res Counc. 2020 Sep 08. 18(2): 307-309
      Medical conferences are held by different medical societies around the world on a regular basis. The society of Dermatologists, venereologists and leprologists of Nepal organized their 15th annual national conference in a complete digital platform making it the first paperless medical conference in Nepal. This conference initiated the use of digital platform for information dissemination and discouraged the use of paper. The mobile applications built for the conference provided information on the scientific programs and also created an unique identity of each registered delegate with an unique quick response code. The code was very valuable during registration and served as meal coupons too. This conference was our small effort towards creating an eco-friendly medical conference. Keywords: Conference; dermatology; digital; eco-friendly; medical; mobile apps; paperless.