bims-skolko Biomed News
on Scholarly communication
Issue of 2022‒07‒17
23 papers selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society

  1. Sci Technol Human Values. 2022 Jul;47(4): 670-697
      In this paper, we analyze the role of science and technology studies (STS) journal editors in organizing and maintaining the peer review economy. We specifically conceptualize peer review as a gift economy running on perpetually renewed experiences of mutual indebtedness among members of an intellectual community. While the peer review system is conventionally presented as self-regulating, we draw attention to its vulnerabilities and to the essential curating function of editors. Aside from inherent complexities, there are various shifts in the broader political-economic and sociotechnical organization of scholarly publishing that have recently made it more difficult for editors to organize robust cycles of gift exchange. This includes the increasing importance of journal metrics and associated changes in authorship practices; the growth and differentiation of the STS journal landscape; and changes in publishing funding models and the structure of the publishing market through which interactions among authors, editors, and reviewers are reconfigured. To maintain a functioning peer review economy in the face of numerous pressures, editors must balance contradictory imperatives: the need to triage intellectual production and rely on established cycles of gift exchange for efficiency, and the need to expand cycles of gift exchange to ensure the sustainability and diversity of the peer review economy.
    Keywords:  editorial work; gift economy; peer review; political economy; scholarly publishing
  2. J Clin Exp Hepatol. 2022 Jul-Aug;12(4):12(4): 1238-1243
      In academia, peer-review refers to a fundamental quality control process whereby external experts (reviewers) are invited to provide unbiased critique of a paper (or other submitted material) and advise on suitability for publication. The process must be robust and conducted with honor and integrity and to the highest professional standards. It is not only the responsibility of the authors but also the reviewers to assess the manuscript appropriately and help in improving the quality of the finished article. A good reviewer not only assists the editors and the journal but can also benefit the authors, the wider scientific community and the general readership. In this article, we discuss the salient features of the peer-review process and tips for undertaking peer-review on scientific papers in an effective and professional manner, including opportunities to develop reviewer skills.
    Keywords:  peer-review; research; reviewer skills
  3. Gigascience. 2022 Jul 12. pii: giac067. [Epub ahead of print]11
      Open Science has gained momentum over the past decade, and embracing that, GigaScience, from its launch a decade ago has aimed at pushing scientific publishing beyond just making articles open access toward making the entire research process open and available as an embedded part of the publishing process. Before the journal's launch in July 2012, the editors aimed to make publishing more than a narrative presentation of work already done into a fully open process. Major milestones include creating our own data repository, embracing FAIR principles, promoting and integrating preprints, and working with other platforms to contribute to a 21st century publishing infrastructure. Almost 10 years after GigaScience's launch, UNESCO published its Open Science Recommendations. With these in mind, looking back, we are happy to have contributed in various ways to UNESCO's aim to "foster a culture of Open Science and aligning incentives for Open Science" from the very beginning, and, more, to use those recommendations to guide our path into the future: to truly embrace the full spectrum of information, tools, and access to Open Science for all participants in scientific endeavours.
  4. Chin J Traumatol. 2022 Jun 27. pii: S1008-1275(22)00067-0. [Epub ahead of print]
    TERM Working Group
      Transparency Ecosystem for Research and Journals in Medicine (TERM) Working Group summarized the essential recommendations that should be considered to review and publish a high-quality guideline. These recommendations from editors and reviewers included ten components of essential requirements: systematic review of existing relevant guidelines, guideline registration, guideline protocol, stakeholders, conflicts of interest, clinical questions, systematic reviews, recommendation consensus, guideline reporting and external review. TERM Working Group abbreviates them as PAGE (essential requirements for Publishing clinical prActice GuidelinEs), and recommends guideline authors, editors, and peer reviewers to use them for high-quality guidelines.
    Keywords:  Editor; Guidelines; Peer review; Recommendations; Transparency
  5. Lancet Infect Dis. 2022 Jul 12. pii: S1473-3099(22)00367-X. [Epub ahead of print]
      BACKGROUND: Gender inequity is still pervasive in academic medicine, including journal publishing. We aimed to ascertain the proportion of women among first and last authors and editors in infectious diseases journals and assess the association between women's editorship and women's authorship while controlling for a journal's impact factor.METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, we randomly selected 40 infectious diseases journals (ten from each 2020 impact factor quartile), 20 obstetrics and gynaecology journals (five from each 2020 impact factor quartile), and 20 cardiology journals (five from each 2020 impact factor quartile) that were indexed in Journal Citation Reports, had an impact factor, had retrievable first and last author names, and had the name of more than one editor listed. We retrieved the names of the first and last authors of all citable articles published by the journals in 2018 and 2019 that counted towards their 2020 impact factor and collected the names of all the journals' editors-in-chief, deputy editors, section editors, and associate editors for the years 2018 and 2019. We used to predict the gender of each first author, last author, and editor. The outcomes of interest were the proportions of women first authors and women last authors. We assessed the association between women's editorship and women's authorship by fitting quasi-Poisson regression models comprising the variables: the proportion of women last authors or women first authors; the proportion of women editors; the presence of a woman editor-in-chief; and journal 2020 impact factor.
    FINDINGS: We found 11 027 citable infectious diseases articles, of which 167 (1·5%) had an indeterminable first author gender, 155 (1·4%) had an indeterminable last author gender, and seven (0·1%) had no authors indexed. 5350 (49·3%) of 10 853 first authors whose gender could be determined were predicted to be women and 5503 (50·7%) were predicted to be men. Women accounted for 3788 (34·9%) of 10 865 last authors whose gender could be determined and men accounted for 7077 (65·1%). Of 577 infectious diseases journal editors, 190 (32·9%) were predicted to be women and 387 (67·1%) were predicted to be men. Of the 40 infectious diseases journals, 13 (32·5%) had a woman as editor-in-chief. For infectious diseases journals, the proportion of women editors had a significant effect on women's first authorship (incidence rate ratio 1·32, 95% CI 1·06-1·63; p=0·012) and women's last authorship (1·92, 1·45-2·55; p<0·0001). The presence of a woman editor-in-chief, the proportion of women last or first authors, and the journal's impact factor exerted no effect in these analyses.
    INTERPRETATION: The proportion of women editors appears to influence the proportion of women last and first authors in the analysed infectious diseases journals. These findings might help to explain gender disparities observed in publishing in academic medicine and suggest a need for revised policies towards increasing women's representation among editors.
    FUNDING: The European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.
  6. Nurs Womens Health. 2022 Jul 07. pii: S1751-4851(22)00142-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      The clinical relevance of published manuscripts needs to be considered when discussing implications for practice.
  7. BMC Urol. 2022 Jul 11. 22(1): 102
      BACKGROUND: Reproducibility is essential for the integrity of scientific research. Reproducibility is measured by the ability of different investigators to replicate the outcomes of an original publication using the same materials and procedures. Unfortunately, reproducibility is not currently a standard being met by most scientific research.METHODS: For this review, we sampled 300 publications in the field of urology to assess for 14 indicators of reproducibility including material availability, raw data availability, analysis script availability, pre-registration information, links to protocols, and if the publication was available free to the public. Publications were also assessed for statements about conflicts of interest and funding sources.
    RESULTS: Of the 300 sample publications, 171 contained empirical data available for analysis of reproducibility. Of the 171 articles with empirical data to analyze, 0.58% provided links to protocols, 4.09% provided access to raw data, 3.09% provided access to materials, and 4.68% were pre-registered. None of the studies provided analysis scripts. Our review is cross-sectional in nature, including only PubMed indexed journals-published in English-and within a finite time period. Thus, our results should be interpreted in light of these considerations.
    CONCLUSION: Current urology research does not consistently provide the components needed to reproduce original studies. Collaborative efforts from investigators and journal editors are needed to improve research quality while minimizing waste and patient risk.
    Keywords:  Replicability; Reproducibility; Transparency; Urologic research; Urology
  8. BMC Res Notes. 2022 Jul 15. 15(1): 249
      OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to determine the publication rate of free paper abstracts presented by the postgraduate (PG) trainees and determine the reasons for non-publication. A mixed methods study was conducted. PG trainees presenting free papers at the at the Pakistan Society of Chemical Pathologist conferences from 2012 to 2018 were included. Three databases were searched to identify if the abstracts were published or not. The PG trainee authors of abstracts not published as full manuscript, were surveyed to determine the barriers and challenges in publishing a manuscript.RESULTS: The average rate of full manuscript publication was 51.8% (n = 93/177) for the abstracts presented by the PG trainees. Publication rate was higher for oral (n = 73/119, 61.3%) compared to poster presentation (n = 20/58, 34.5%). Most of the manuscripts were published after two years of abstract presentation. The survey showed that the main challenges to publishing an abstract were lack of time, limited scientific writing or submission skills, lack of funding for publication fee, and negative or statistically non-significant results. This reflects a need to arrange workshops/symposia for the PG trainees of low-middle income country (LMIC) to enhance their writing and time management skills and improve the full manuscript publication rate from LMICs.
    Keywords:  Barriers; Challenges; Low-middle income country; Manuscript; Publication; Scientific writing
  9. J Clin Epidemiol. 2022 Jul 09. pii: S0895-4356(22)00175-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      OBJECTIVE: To investigate to which degree systematic review protocols adhere to the PRISMA-P reporting guideline.STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: We randomly sampled 50 publications of systematic review protocols indexed in PubMed and 50 protocols uploaded to PROSPERO from 2016 onwards. Two authors independently extracted data and assessed adherence to the 26 items specified by PRISMA-P. For each protocol, we categorised adherence to PRISMA-P as complete (=>90% of PRISMA-P items were fully reported) or partial (=>60% of PRISMA-P items were fully reported). We also assessed adherence to each PRISMA-P item across the protocols.
    RESULTS: Four (8%) of the PubMed indexed protocols adhered completely, and 45 (90%) adhered partially to PRISMA-P, but with considerable variation. None (0%) of the PROSPERO uploaded protocols adhered completely and only six (12%) adhered partially to PRISMA-P. For both types of protocols, aspects related to the role of the sponsor, procedures for doing qualitative data synthesis if quantitative synthesis is not appropriate, and methods for assessing publication or outcome reporting biases and confidence in cumulative evidence were often not reported.
    CONCLUSION: Adherence to the PRISMA-P reporting guideline was somewhat inadequate in PubMed indexed protocols and clearly inadequate in PROSPERO uploaded protocols. Authors of systematic review protocols that decide to report according to PRISMA-P should carefully check all items included in the guideline, and journal editors and peer reviewers should consider PRISMA-P adherence when reviewing protocols for potential publication.
    Keywords:  PRISMA-P; reporting; systematic review protocol
  10. Perspect Psychol Sci. 2022 Jul 15. 17456916211072851
      Psychological science is in a unique position to identify and dismantle the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that maintain and increase racial inequality, yet the extent to which psychological science can do so depends on the extent to which race scholarship is supported in psychological science. We theorized that the lack of racial diversity among editors at mainstream journals might obstruct the advancement of race scholarship by signaling to race scholars that their research is not valued by mainstream journals and that they should submit their research elsewhere for publication. Indeed, in a preregistered field experiment with 1,189 psychology Ph.D. students, we found that under all-White editorial boards, race scholars were less likely than non-race scholars (a) to believe that the journal valued racial diversity, research on race, or their own research; (b) to believe that the journal would publish their research; and (c) to be willing to submit their research to the journal for publication. Under racially diverse editorial boards, however, we find no differences between race scholars and non-race scholars. In fact, we found that under diverse editorial boards, compared with under all-White editorial boards, both race scholars and non-race scholars had more positive perceptions of the journal. We argue that racially diverse editorial boards are good for race scholars and their scholarship and for the field more broadly.
    Keywords:  diversity; editors; metabeliefs; psychological science
  11. Curr Pharm Teach Learn. 2022 Jun;pii: S1877-1297(22)00124-1. [Epub ahead of print]14(6): 765-772
      BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Strong writing skills are critical to the pharmacy profession. This paper describes the design, delivery, and impact of a course intended to develop pharmacy students' scientific writing, peer assessment, and critical appraisal skills.EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITY AND SETTING: The course was offered in the final year of an undergraduate pharmacy program with students whose first language is not English. In this course, students write two structured pharmacy review articles (PRA) based on assigned scientific research articles and peer assess each others' written PRAs. Students also critically appraise scientific research articles on a weekly basis, complete one pre-journal club written reflective critique based on a assigned scientific research article, and moderate one journal club session.
    FINDINGS: Course rubrics were developed and validated by the course coordinators. A survey administered to students enrolled in the course identified that 85% of the students perceived that they gained adequate writing skills in the course. More than 70% of the students indicated they had the necessary skills to evaluate their peers' written assessments, and 93% felt comfortable providing and receiving feedback from peers. More than 90% of the students indicated that writing PRAs and the peer assessment improved their critical and analytical skills.
    SUMMARY: This course improved students' scientific writing, peer assessment, and critical appraisal skills. Further practice is required to reinforce the skills learned and to strengthen the writing skills of students.
    Keywords:  Critical appraisal; Non-native English speakers; Peer assessment; Pharmacy curriculum; Scientific writing
  12. Psychol Rev. 2022 Jul 14.
      The open science framework has garnered increased visibility and has been partially implemented in recent years. Open science underscores the importance of transparency and reproducibility to conduct rigorous science. Recently, several journals published by the American Psychological Association have begun adopting the open science framework. At the same time, the field of psychology has been reckoning with the current sociopolitical climate regarding anti-Blackness and White supremacy. As psychology begins to adopt the open science framework into its journals, the authors underscore the importance of embracing and aligning open science with frameworks and theories that have the potential to move the field toward antiracism and away from the embedded White supremacy value systems and ideals. The present article provides an overview of the open science framework; an examination of White supremacy ideology in research and publishing; guidance on how to move away from these pernicious values; and a proposal on alternate value systems to center equity, diversity, and inclusion with the aim of establishing an antiracist open science framework. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).
  13. Health Care Women Int. 2022 Jul 12. 1-17
      The researchers' aim to quantitatively study the impacts of education, health expenditure, Internet, mobile phone, and open-access articles in medical science on women's health in China. We found that there are very strong significant negative correlations between the data of women's mortality rates and female school enrollment (p≪0.01), whereas there are strong significant negative correlations for open-access papers in eight disciplines of medical science, individuals using the Internet, and mobile cellular subscriptions (p≪0.01). The first principal component explains 96.8%, 96.6%, and 99.6% of the variation in the mortality rate of female infants (p = 0.002 < 0.01), females under-5 (p = 0.003 < 0.01), and female adults (p = 0.002 < 0.01), respectively. There is a similar relationship between open-access medical papers and women's health. The above results could be helpful to interdisciplinary audiences (patients, practitioners, and policymakers) to develop strategies for the effective implementation of knowledge on women's health (how to disseminate knowledge more effectively in the whole society).
  14. Anesth Analg. 2022 Aug 01. 135(2): 241-245
      In this Pro-Con commentary article, we discuss whether or not code sharing should be mandatory for scientific publications. Scientific programming is an increasingly prevalent tool in research. However, there are not unified guidelines for code availability requirements. Some journals require code sharing. Others require code descriptions. Yet others have no policies around code sharing. The Pro side presented here argues that code sharing should be mandatory for all scientific publications involving code. This Pro argument comes in 2 parts. First, any defensible reason for not sharing code is an equally valid a reason for the manuscript itself not being published. Second, lack of code sharing requirements creates 2 tiers of science: one where reproducibility is required and one where it is not. Additionally, the Pro authors suggest that a debate over code sharing is itself a decade out-of-date due to the emerging availability of containerization and virtual environment sharing software. The Pro argument concludes with an appeal that authors release code to make their work more understandable by other researchers. The Con side presented here argues that computer source codes of medical technology equipment should not be subject to mandatory public disclosure. The source code is a crucial part of what makes a particular device unique and allows that device to outperform its competition. The Con authors believe that public disclosure of this proprietary information would destroy all incentives for businesses to develop new and improved technologies. Competition in the free marketplace is what drives companies to constantly improve their products, to develop new and better medical devices. The open disclosure of these "trade secret" details would effectively end that competitive drive. Why invest time, money, and energy developing a "better mousetrap" if your competitors can copy it and produce it the next day?
  15. Emergencias. 2022 Aug;34(4): 282-286
      OBJECTIVES: To analyze gender disparity in scientific productivity reflected by the authorship of articles in the journal Emergencias over the past decade.MATERIAL AND METHODS: Retrospective longitudinal study. We included articles in all issues published between January 2011 and December 2020, analyzing the number of authors, their gender, article type, year of publication, and preferential authorship credit (first author, corresponding author, and last author positioning). The percentages of women named in each position were calculated, and the trend over time was analyzed.
    RESULTS: A total of 1240 articles signed by 5213 authors were collected; a woman was named in 1889 of the cases (36.2%). A woman was the first author of 384 articles (31%), the corresponding author of 352 (28.4%), and the last author of 358 (28.9%). The number of female authors of original research articles or meta-analyses tended to increase over time (P = .047), but no statistically significant gender trends were observed in the authorship of editorials, narrative reviews, scientific letters or short communications, letters to the editor, or any other publication category.
    CONCLUSION: The publication of articles by women in Emergencias has increased over the past decade. However, women continue to author fewer articles than men.
    Keywords:  Authorship.; Autoría.; Emergencias.; Emergency medicine.; Gender bias.; Publicaciones científicas.; Scientific publication.; Sesgo de género.
  16. Front Res Metr Anal. 2022 ;7 846822
      What is scientific quality and how can it be achieved? Recent developments in clinical biomedicine gave prominence to transparency as a new core value for scientific research. Without transparency, other characteristics and values remain unknown. But how can abstract concepts and values be implemented in day-to-day scientific practices and what gets lost on the way? In order to answer this question, this study investigates the role of the PRISMA reporting guideline for writing systematic reviews and meta-analyses. By combining a document analysis and expert interviews with its developers, it attempts to bridge the gap between research practice and current modes of evaluation. Beside showing how the guideline was designed to be applicable and acceptable as a new standard, the analysis revealed crucial distinctions between transparency as an abstract quality goal and its practical implementation in the form of specifically formulated rules. Although PRISMA relies on transparency in order to be meaningful, it blurs the concept in order to circumvent some of its main disadvantages.
    Keywords:  PRISMA; reporting; reporting guideline; science evaluation; scientific quality; standardization; systematic reviews; transparency
  17. Lancet Infect Dis. 2022 Jul 12. pii: S1473-3099(22)00418-2. [Epub ahead of print]
  18. Am J Emerg Med. 2022 Jul 06. pii: S0735-6757(22)00439-9. [Epub ahead of print]
    Keywords:  Emergency medicine research; Integrating non-English journals; Non-English writing; Scientific edition; Web of science databases
  19. Natl Med J India. 2021 Nov-Dec;34(6):pii: 10.25259/NMJI_586_21. [Epub ahead of print]34(6): 374-375
  20. Clin Radiol. 2022 Jul 06. pii: S0009-9260(22)00278-1. [Epub ahead of print]
      AIM: To assess the prevalence of publication bias in the radiology literature, data-mining techniques were used to extract p-values in abstracts published in key radiology journals over the past 20 years.MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 34,699 abstracts published in Radiology, Investigative Radiology, European Radiology, American Journal of Roentgenology, and American Journal of Neuroradiology published between January 2000 and December 2019 were included in the analysis. Automated text mining using regular expressions was used to mine abstracts for p-values.
    RESULTS: The text mining algorithm detected 43,489 p-values, the majority (82.4%) of which were reported as "significant", i.e., p<0.05. There has also been an increased propensity to report more p-values over time. The distribution of p-values showed a step change at the conventional significance threshold of 0.05. The odds ratio of a "significant" p-value being reported in the abstract compared to the full text was calculated to be 2.52 (95% confidence interval 1.78-3.58; p<0.001). Taken together, these results provide strong evidence for selective reporting of significant p-values in abstracts.
    CONCLUSION: Statistically significant p-values are preferentially reported in radiology journal abstracts.