bims-skolko Biomed News
on Scholarly communication
Issue of 2021‒08‒29
twenty-one papers selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society

  1. Nature. 2021 Aug 25.
    Keywords:  Careers; Funding; Peer review; Publishing
  2. Front Res Metr Anal. 2021 ;6 703159
      Acknowledgement of scientific achievements was and is essentially achieved through the citation of a publication. Increasingly, however, it is no longer just the publication itself that plays an important role, but also the degree of attention that a scientist achieves with this very publication. Thus, the importance of strategic behavior in science is progressing and an awareness mentality is spreading. In this paper, the causes and backgrounds of this development are discussed, identifying the use of reductionist, quantitative systems in science management and research funding, the loss of critical judgment and technocratic dominance, quantitative assessments used for decision making, altmetrics and the like as alternative views, the use of perception scores in reference databases and universities as well as ambitions of journals as main drivers. Besides, different forms of strategic behavior in science and the resulting consequences and impacts are being highlighted.
    Keywords:  academic publishing; awareness; bibliometrics; scholarly communication; scientometrics
  3. Scientometrics. 2021 Aug 18. 1-28
      The predatory nature of a journal is in constant debate because it depends on multiple factors, which keep evolving. The classification of a journal as being predatory, or not, is no longer exclusively associated with its open access status, by inclusion or exclusion on perceived reputable academic indexes and/or on whitelists or blacklists. Inclusion in the latter may itself be determined by a host of criteria, may be riddled with type I errors (e.g., erroneous inclusion of a truly predatory journal in a whitelist) and/or type II errors (e.g., erroneous exclusion of a truly valid scholarly journal in a whitelist). While extreme cases of predatory publishing behavior may be clear cut, with true predatory journals displaying ample predatory properties, journals in non-binary grey zones of predatory criteria are difficult to classify. They may have some legitimate properties, but also some illegitimate ones. In such cases, it might be too extreme to refer to such entities as "predatory". Simply referring to them as "potentially predatory" or "borderline predatory" also does little justice to discern a predatory entity from an unscholarly, low-quality, unprofessional, or exploitative one. Faced with the limitations caused by this gradient of predatory dimensionality, this paper introduces a novel credit-like rating system, based in part on well-known financial credit ratings companies used to assess investment risk and creditworthiness, to assess journal or publisher quality. Cognizant of the weaknesses and criticisms of these rating systems, we suggest their use as a new way to view the scholarly nature of a journal or publisher. When used as a tool to supplement, replace, or reinforce current sets of criteria used for whitelists and blacklists, this system may provide a fresh perspective to gain a better understanding of predatory publishing behavior. Our tool does not propose to offer a definitive solution to this problem.
    Keywords:   Predatory publishing; Academic publishing; Exploitative versus predatory behavior; Journal and publisher whitelists and blacklists; Legitimate journals and publishers; Predatory criteria; Scholarly versus unscholarly behavior; Type I and II errors
  4. PLoS One. 2021 ;16(8): e0256577
      BACKGROUND: Since 2008, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) has mandated that studies it funds either in whole or in part are required to publish their results as open access (OA) within 12 months of publication using either online repositories and/or OA journals. Yet, there is evidence that authors are poorly compliant with this mandate. Specifically, there has been an apparent decrease in OA publication after 2015, which coincides with a change in the OA policy during the same year. One particular policy change that may have contributed to this decline was lifting the requirement that authors deposit their article in an OA repository immediately upon publication. We investigated the proportion of OA compliance of CIHR-funded studies in the period before and after the policy change of 2015 with manual confirmation of both CIHR funding and OA status.METHODS AND FINDINGS: We identified CIHR-funded studies published between the years 2014 to 2017 using a comprehensive search in the Web of Science (WoS). We took a stratified random sample from all four years (i.e. 2014 to 2017), with 250 studies from each year. Two authors independently reviewed the final full-text publications retrieved from the journal web page to determine to confirm CIHR funding, as indicated in the acknowledgements or elsewhere in the paper. For each study, we also collected bibliometric data that included citation count and Altmetric attention score Statistical analyses were conducted using two-tailed Fisher's exact test with relative risk (RR). Among the 851 receiving CIHR funding published from 2014 to 2017, the percentage of CIHR-funded studies published as OA significantly decreased from 79.6% in 2014 to 70.3% in 2017 (RR = 0.88, 95% CI: 0.79-0.99, P = 0.028). When considering all four years, there was no significant difference in the percentage of CIHR-funded studies published as OA in both 2014 and 2015 compared to both 2016 and 2017 (RR = 0.97, 95% CI: 0.90-1.05, P = 0.493). Additionally, OA publications had significantly higher citation count (both in year of publication and in total) and higher attention scores (P<0.05).
    CONCLUSIONS: Overall, we found that there was a significant decrease in the proportion of CIHR funded studies published as OA from 2014 compared to 2017, though this difference did not persist when comparing both 2014-2015 to 2016-2017. The primary limitation was the reliance of self-reported data from authors on CIHR funding status. We posit that this decrease may be attributable to CIHR's OA policy change in 2015. Further exploration is warranted to both validate these studies using a larger dataset and, if valid, investigate the effects of potential interventions to improve the OA compliance, such as use of a CIHR publication database, and reinstatement of a policy for authors to immediately submit their findings to OA repositories upon publication.
  5. Nature. 2021 Aug;596(7873): 486
    Keywords:  Authorship; Careers; Publishing
  6. An Acad Bras Cienc. 2021 ;pii: S0001-37652021000601801. [Epub ahead of print]93(suppl 3): e20201948
      The issue of publication of articles by researchers in the universe of scientific publications, has become over the last decades, increasingly asymmetrical among the parties involved (author, Author's institution, Development agencies, Magazine / Publisher, and referees). Here, I analyzed to what extent are all the parts involved in the process of scientific publication equally balanced, and the gains and losses among parts involved during the process. The analysis points that the gains and losses among parts involved are quite asymmetric. I conclude that there are advantages, disadvantages and costs that should be addressed at a global level to better balance the process of publication and that should have some adjustments to better balance of the parts involved in the process. All parts involved should search for a more equilibrated system of publishing, since, now, the system is strongly asymmetric among the parts involved in scientific publication. It is clear is that this is not a simple subject, but possible changes are quite simple and desirable.
  7. Ecol Evol. 2021 Aug;11(16): 10736-10740
      The benefits of publishing your data sooner versus later in Ecology and Evolution.
  8. Am J Epidemiol. 2021 Aug 25. pii: kwab217. [Epub ahead of print]
      Data sharing improves epidemiology research, but sharing data frustrates epidemiologic researchers. The inefficiencies of current methods and options for data-sharing are increasingly documented and easily understood by any study that has shared its data and any researcher who has received shared data. Temprosa and Moore et al. (Am J Epidemiol. XXXX;XXX(XX):XXXX-XXXX)) describe how the COnsortium of METabolomics Studies (COMETS) developed and deployed a flexible analytic platform to eliminate key pain points in large-scale metabolomics research. COMETS Analytics includes an online tool, but its cloud computing and technology are supporting, rather than the lead, actors in this script. The COMETS team identified the need to standardize diverse and inconsistent metabolomics and covariate data and models across its many participating cohort studies, and then they developed a flexible tool that gave its member studies choices about how they wanted to meet the consortium's analytic requirements. Different specialties will have different specific research needs and will likely continue to use and develop an array of diverse analytic and technical solutions for their projects. COMETS Analytics shows how important and enabling the upstream attention to data standards and data consistency are to producing high-quality metabolomics, consortium-based, and large-scale epidemiology research.
    Keywords:  common data model; data analysis; data harmonization; data pooling; epidemiologic methods; metabolomics; prospective study
  9. Ind Health. 2021 Aug 20.
      The global spread of COVID-19 pandemic forced the scientific community to identify new ways of exchanging and transferring the scientific knowledge, also considering that the measures taken to combat the pandemic, such as travel restrictions, closed borders and gathering bans, led to cancellations of many conferences, meetings and workshops.The enhancement of the existing digital platforms and the development of new systems to share scientific knowledge has allowed the scientific community to "meet" again in new virtual environments (e.g. Zoom, Cisco WebEx, Live Stream, Demio, GoToWebinar Seminar, Google Hangouts, Skype, Microsoft Teams, etc.), providing an unprecedented opportunity to reform methods of organizing academic conferences in all disciplines.Starting from the review of the existing literature, this study aimed at investigating the impact of the spreading of virtual conferences on the field of research. The SWOT analysis was used to identify strengths and weaknesses of the scientific conferences organized in the new format, as well as opportunities and threats created by the socio-economic and political context in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Keywords:  Accessibility; COVID-19; Networking; Planning needs; SWOT Analysis; Scientific community; Virtual Conference
  10. Br Dent J. 2021 Aug 19.
      Objectives To evaluate the type of peer review blinding used in highly ranked dental journals and to discuss the influence of the blinding approaches on the peer review process.Methods All 91 dental journals classified by impact factor (IF) had their websites scrutinised for the type of peer review blinding used for submissions. If the information was not reported, the journals were contacted to obtain the information. Linear and logistic regression were applied to evaluate the association between type of peer review blinding and IF.Results The selected journals reported the following peer review blinding approaches: single-blind (N = 36, 39.6%), double-blind (N = 46, 50.5%), transparent (N = 2, 2.2%) and open (N = 1, 1.1%). Information from six (6.6%) journals was not available. A linear regression analysis demonstrated that journals with lower IFs were associated with double-blind review (p = 0.001). A logistic regression suggested lower odds of association between single-blind peer review and journals with IFs below a threshold of 2 (odds ratio 0.157, confidence interval 0.059 to 0.417, p <0.001).Conclusions The majority of highly ranked dental journals had single- and double-blind peer review; journals with higher IFs presented single-blind peer review and those with lower IFs reported double-blind peer review.
  11. Compend Contin Educ Dent. 2021 Sep;42(8): 418-419
      Good writing in dentistry involves both a depth of technical knowledge and experience and a command of more "classical" disciplines of knowledge and education, such as language, grammar, rhetoric, and logic. All of these factors influence the psychology and rhetorical interpretive mechanisms by which readers process and derive meaning from written text and are especially relevant to effective technical and medical writing.
  12. Rev Esp Cir Ortop Traumatol. 2021 Sep-Oct;65(5):pii: S1988-8856(21)00068-7. [Epub ahead of print]65(5): 315-316
  13. Rev Esp Cardiol (Engl Ed). 2021 Sep;pii: S1885-5857(21)00240-1. [Epub ahead of print]74(9): 790-799
      The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement, published in 2009, was designed to help systematic reviewers transparently report why the review was done, what the authors did, and what they found. Over the past decade, advances in systematic review methodology and terminology have necessitated an update to the guideline. The PRISMA 2020 statement replaces the 2009 statement and includes new reporting guidance that reflects advances in methods to identify, select, appraise, and synthesise studies. The structure and presentation of the items have been modified to facilitate implementation. In this article, we present the PRISMA 2020 27-item checklist, an expanded checklist that details reporting recommendations for each item, the PRISMA 2020 abstract checklist, and the revised flow diagrams for original and updated reviews. Full English text available
    Keywords:  Escritura médica; Guía de publicación; Medical writing; Meta-analysis; Metanálisis; Publishing guide; Revisión sistemática; Systematic review
  14. Br Dent J. 2021 Aug;231(4): 207
  15. MedEdPORTAL. 2021 ;17 11174
      Introduction: Education scholarship requires peer reviewers. For novice scholars, reviewing is an important developmental activity that cultivates deeper participation in the scholarship community. Yet getting started with reviewing is challenging for those not involved with the educational scholarship community. Beyond scientific expertise, reviewers must have a mentoring mindset, skills in providing constructive feedback, and knowledge of common ethical challenges associated with producing and evaluating scholarship.Methods: Our workshop introduced novice health professions educators to peer reviewing. It included four stimulus presentations about the peer reviewer's mindset and skills, followed by reinforcement activities. The workshop could be adapted to variously sized groups. An 8:1 ratio of participants to facilitators was ideal for activities. Topics covered included considerations before accepting an invitation, the review process, the good citizen approach to reviewing, and reviewer ethics. The session concluded with suggestions for continued development of peer reviewer competencies. The workshop was evaluated using a custom survey.
    Results: Throughout 2019 and early 2020, 58 health professions educators and trainees participated in the workshop across varied venues. Evaluations were obtained from 33 participants (57%). Nearly all rated the workshop as high quality and valuable to peer reviewer preparation. Most (26 of 33; 75%) gained confidence about their qualifications to serve as reviewers. Eighty percent (28 of 33) believed they could recognize ethical dilemmas.
    Discussion: This workshop provided a springboard for peer reviewing health professions education scholarship. Participants generally praised the experience for introducing them to the world of peer review and preparing them for it.
    Keywords:  Educational Personnel; Faculty Development; Peer Review; Publishing/Scholarship; Research Ethics
  16. Clin Sci (Lond). 2021 Aug 27. 135(16): 2031-2034
      Clinical Science is proud to launch a new translational meta-research collection. Meta-research, or the science of science, applies the scientific method to study science itself. Meta-research is a powerful tool for identifying common problems in scientific papers, assessing their impact, and testing solutions to improve the transparency, rigor, trustworthiness, and usefulness of biomedical research. The collection welcomes science of science studies that link basic science to disease mechanisms, as well as meta-research articles highlighting opportunities to improve transparency, rigor, and reproducibility among the types of papers published in Clinical Science. Submissions might include science of science studies that explore factors linked to successful translation, or meta-research on experimental methods or study designs that are often used in translational research. We hope that this collection will encourage scientists to think critically about current practices and take advantage of opportunities to make their own research more transparent, rigorous, and reproducible.
    Keywords:  meta-research; reproducibility; rigor; transparency
  17. J Adv Pract Oncol. 2021 Jul;12(5): 463-464