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Multiple Major Scientific Journals Will Fully Adopt Open Access Under Plan S

Curator: Stephen J. Williams, PhD

More university library systems have been pressuring major scientific publishing houses to adopt an open access strategy in order to reduce the library system’s budgetary burdens.  In fact some major universities like the California system of universities (University of California and other publicly funded universities in the state as well as Oxford University in the UK, even MIT have decided to become their own publishing houses in a concerted effort to fight back against soaring journal subscription costs as well as the costs burdening individual scientists and laboratories (some of the charges to publish one paper can run as high as $8000.00 USD while the journal still retains all the rights of distribution of the information).  Therefore more and more universities, as well as concerted efforts by the European Union and the US government are mandating that scientific literature be published in an open access format.

The results of this pressure are evident now as major journals like Nature, JBC, and others have plans to go fully open access in 2021.  Below is a listing and news reports of some of these journals plans to undertake a full Open Access Format.

 

Nature to join open-access Plan S, publisher says

09 APRIL 2020 UPDATE 14 APRIL 2020

Springer Nature says it commits to offering researchers a route to publishing open access in Nature and most Nature-branded journals from 2021.

Richard Van Noorden

After a change in the rules of the bold open-access (OA) initiative known as Plan S, publisher Springer Nature said on 8 April that many of its non-OA journals — including Nature — were now committed to joining the plan, pending discussion of further technical details.

This means that Nature and other Nature-branded journals that publish original research will now look to offer an immediate OA route after January 2021 to scientists who want it, or whose funders require it, a spokesperson says. (Nature is editorially independent of its publisher, Springer Nature.)

“We are delighted that Springer Nature is committed to transitioning its journals to full OA,” said Robert Kiley, head of open research at the London-based biomedical funder Wellcome, and the interim coordinator for Coalition S, a group of research funders that launched Plan S in 2018.

But Lisa Hinchliffe, a librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, says the changed rules show that publishers have successfully pushed back against Plan S, softening its guidelines and expectations — in particular in the case of hybrid journals, which publish some content openly and keep other papers behind paywalls. “The coalition continues to take actions that rehabilitate hybrid journals into compliance rather than taking the hard line of unacceptability originally promulgated,” she says.

 

 

 

 

What is Plan S?

The goal of Plan S is to make scientific and scholarly works free to read as soon as they are published. So far, 17 national funders, mostly in Europe, have joined the initiative, as have the World Health Organization and two of the world’s largest private biomedical funders — the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Wellcome. The European Commission will also implement an OA policy that is aligned with Plan S. Together, this covers around 7% of scientific articles worldwide, according to one estimate. A 2019 report published by the publishing-services firm Clarivate Analytics suggested that 35% of the research content published in Nature in 2017 acknowledged a Plan S funder (see ‘Plan S papers’).

PLAN S PAPERS

Journal Total papers in 2017 % acknowledging Plan S funder
Nature 290 35%
Science 235 31%
Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 639 20%

Source: The Plan S footprint: Implications for the scholarly publishing landscape (Institute for Scientific Information, 2019)

 

Source: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01066-5

Opening ASBMB publications freely to all

 

Lila M. Gierasch, Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Biological Chemistry

Nicholas O. Davidson

Kerry-Anne Rye, Editors-in-Chief, Journal of Lipid Research and 

Alma L. Burlingame, Editor-in-Chief, Molecular and Cellular Proteomics

 

We are extremely excited to announce on behalf of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) that the Journal of Biological Chemistry (JBC), Molecular & Cellular Proteomics (MCP), and the Journal of Lipid Research (JLR) will be published as fully open-access journals beginning in January 2021. This is a landmark decision that will have huge impact for readers and authors. As many of you know, many researchers have called for journals to become open access to facilitate scientific progress, and many funding agencies across the globe are either already requiring or considering a requirement that all scientific publications based on research they support be published in open-access journals. The ASBMB journals have long supported open access, making the accepted author versions of manuscripts immediately and permanently available, allowing authors to opt in to the immediate open publication of the final version of their paper, and endorsing the goals of the larger open-access movement (1). However, we are no longer satisfied with these measures. To live up to our goals as a scientific society, we want to freely distribute the scientific advances published in JBC, MCP, and JLR as widely and quickly as possible to support the scientific community. How better can we facilitate the dissemination of new information than to make our scientific content freely open to all?

For ASBMB journals and others who have contemplated or made the transition to publishing all content open access, achieving this milestone generally requires new financial mechanisms. In the case of the ASBMB journals, the transition to open access is being made possible by a new partnership with Elsevier, whose established capabilities and economies of scale make the costs associated with open-access publication manageable for the ASBMB (2). However, we want to be clear: The ethos of ASBMB journals will not change as a consequence of this new alliance. The journals remain society journals: The journals are owned by the society, and all scientific oversight for the journals will remain with ASBMB and its chosen editors. Peer review will continue to be done by scientists reviewing the work of scientists, carried out by editorial board members and external referees on behalf of the ASBMB journal leadership. There will be no intervention in this process by the publisher.

Although we will be saying “goodbye” to many years of self-publishing (115 in the case of JBC), we are certain that we are taking this big step for all the right reasons. The goal for JBC, MCP, and JLR has always been and will remain to help scientists advance their work by rapidly and effectively disseminating their results to their colleagues and facilitating the discovery of new findings (13), and open access is only one of many innovations and improvements in science publishing that could help the ASBMB journals achieve this goal. We have been held back from fully exploring these options because of the challenges of “keeping the trains running” with self-publication. In addition to allowing ASBMB to offer all the content in its journals to all readers freely and without barriers, the new partnership with Elsevier opens many doors for ASBMB publications, from new technology for manuscript handling and production, to facilitating reader discovery of content, to deploying powerful analytics to link content within and across publications, to new opportunities to improve our peer review mechanisms. We have all dreamed of implementing these innovations and enhancements (45) but have not had the resources or infrastructure needed.

A critical aspect of moving to open access is how this decision impacts the cost to authors. Like most publishers that have made this transition, we have been extremely worried that achieving open-access publishing would place too big a financial burden on our authors. We are pleased to report the article-processing charges (APCs) to publish in ASBMB journals will be on the low end within the range of open-access fees: $2,000 for members and $2,500 for nonmembers. While slightly higher than the cost an author incurs now if the open-access option is not chosen, these APCs are lower than the current charges for open access on our existing platform.

References

1.↵ Gierasch, L. M., Davidson, N. O., Rye, K.-A., and Burlingame, A. L. (2019) For the sake of science. J. Biol. Chem. 294, 2976 FREE Full Text

2.↵ Gierasch, L. M. (2017) On the costs of scientific publishing. J. Biol. Chem. 292, 16395–16396 FREE Full Text

3.↵ Gierasch, L. M. (2020) Faster publication advances your science: The three R’s. J. Biol. Chem. 295, 672 FREE Full Text

4.↵ Gierasch, L. M. (2017) JBC is on a mission to facilitate scientific discovery. J. Biol. Chem. 292, 6853–6854 FREE Full Text

5.↵ Gierasch, L. M. (2017) JBC’s New Year’s resolutions: Check them off! J. Biol. Chem. 292, 21705–21706 FREE Full Text

 

Source: https://www.jbc.org/content/295/22/7814.short?ssource=mfr&rss=1

 

Open access publishing under Plan S to start in 2021

BMJ

2019; 365 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l2382 (Published 31 May 2019)Cite this as: BMJ 2019;365:l2382

From 2021, all research funded by public or private grants should be published in open access journals, according to a group of funding agencies called coALition S.1

The plan is the final version of a draft that was put to public consultation last year and attracted 344 responses from institutions, almost half of them from the UK.2 The responses have been considered and some changes made to the new system called Plan S, a briefing at the Science Media Centre in London was told on 29 May.

The main change has been to delay implementation for a year, to 1 January 2021, to allow more time for those involved—researchers, funders, institutions, publishers, and repositories—to make the necessary changes, said John-Arne Røttingen, chief executive of the Research Council of Norway.

“All research contracts signed after that date should include the obligation to publish in an open access journal,” he said. T……

(Please Note in a huge bit of irony this article is NOT Open Access and behind a paywall…. Yes an article about an announcement to go Open Access is not Open Access)

Source: https://www.bmj.com/content/365/bmj.l2382.full

 

 

Plan S

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Not to be confused with S-Plan.

Plan S is an initiative for open-access science publishing launched in 2018[1][2] by “cOAlition S”,[3] a consortium of national research agencies and funders from twelve European countries. The plan requires scientists and researchers who benefit from state-funded research organisations and institutions to publish their work in open repositories or in journals that are available to all by 2021.[4] The “S” stands for “shock”.[5]

Principles of the plan[edit]

The plan is structured around ten principles.[3] The key principle states that by 2021, research funded by public or private grants must be published in open-access journals or platforms, or made immediately available in open access repositories without an embargo. The ten principles are:

  1. authors should retain copyrighton their publications, which must be published under an open license such as Creative Commons;
  2. the members of the coalition should establish robust criteria and requirements for compliant open access journals and platforms;
  3. they should also provide incentives for the creation of compliant open access journals and platforms if they do not yet exist;
  4. publication fees should be covered by the funders or universities, not individual researchers;
  5. such publication fees should be standardized and capped;
  6. universities, research organizations, and libraries should align their policies and strategies;
  7. for books and monographs, the timeline may be extended beyond 2021;
  8. open archives and repositories are acknowledged for their importance;
  9. hybrid open-access journalsare not compliant with the key principle;
  10. members of the coalition should monitor and sanction non-compliance.

Member organisations

Organisations in the coalition behind Plan S include:[14]

International organizations that are members:

Plan S is also supported by:

 

Other articles on Open Access on this Open Access Journal Include:

MIT, guided by open access principles, ends Elsevier negotiations, an act followed by other University Systems in the US and in Europe

 

Open Access e-Scientific Publishing: Elected among 2018 Nature’s 10 Top Influencers – ROBERT-JAN SMITS: A bureaucrat launched a drive to transform science publishing

 

Electronic Scientific AGORA: Comment Exchanges by Global Scientists on Articles published in the Open Access Journal @pharmaceuticalintelligence.com – Four Case Studies

 

Mozilla Science Lab Promotes Data Reproduction Through Open Access: Report from 9/10/2015 Online Meeting

 

Elsevier’s Mendeley and Academia.edu – How We Distribute Scientific Research: A Case in Advocacy for Open Access Journals

 

The Fatal Self Distraction of the Academic Publishing Industry: The Solution of the Open Access Online Scientific Journals
PeerJ Model for Open Access Scientific Journal
“Open Access Publishing” is becoming the mainstream model: “Academic Publishing” has changed Irrevocably
Open-Access Publishing in Genomics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Real Time Coverage @BIOConvention #BIO2019:  Issues of Risk and Reproduceability in Translational and Academic Collaboration; 2:30-4:00 June 3 Philadelphia PA

Reporter: Stephen J. Williams, PhD @StephenJWillia2

Derisking Academic Science: The Unmet Need  

Translating academic research into products and new therapies is a very risky venture as only 1% of academic research has been successfully translated into successful products.

Speakers
Collaboration from Chicago area universities like U of Chicago, Northwestern, etc.  First phase was enhance collaboration between universities by funding faculty recruitment and basic research.  Access to core facilities across universities.  Have expanded to give alternatives to company formation.
Half of the partnerships from Harvard and companies have been able to spin out viable startups.
Most academic PI are not as savvy to start a biotech so they bring in biotechs and build project teams as well as developing a team of ex pharma and biotech experts.  Derisk as running as one asset project.  Partner as early as possible.  A third of their pipeline have been successfully partnered.  Work with investors and patent attorneys.
Focused on getting PIs to get to startup.  Focused on oncology and vaccines and I/O.  The result can be liscensing or partnership. Running around 50 to 60 projects. Creating a new company from these US PI partnerships.
Most projects from Harvard have been therapeutics-based.  At Harvard they have a network of investors ($50 million).   They screen PI proposals based on translateability and what investors are interested in.
In Chicago they solicit multiple projects but are agnostic on area but as they are limited they are focused on projects that will assist in developing a stronger proposal to investor/funding mechanism.
NYU goes around university doing due diligence reaching out to investigators. They shop around their projects to wet their investors, pharma appetite future funding.  At Takeda they have five centers around US.  They want to have more input so go into the university with their scientists and discuss ideas.
Challenges:

Takeda: Data Validation very important. Second there may be disconnect with the amount of equity the PI wants in the new company as well as management.  Third PIs not aware of all steps in drug development.

Harvard:  Pharma and biotech have robust research and academic does not have the size or scope of pharma.  PIs must be more diligent on e.g. the compounds they get from a screen… they only focus narrowly

NYU:  bring in consultants as PIs don’t understand all the management issues.  Need to understand development so they bring in the experts to help them.  Pharma he feels have to much risk aversion and none of their PIs want 100% equity.

Chicago:  they like to publish at early stage so publication freedom is a challenge

Dr. Freedman: Most scientists responding to Nature survey said yes a reproduceability crisis.  The reasons: experimental bias, lack of validation techniques, reagents, and protocols etc.
And as he says there is a great ECONOMIC IMPACT of preclinical reproducability issues: to the tune of $56 billion of irreproducable results (paper published in PLOS Biology).  If can find the core drivers of this issue they can solve the problem.  STANDARDS are constantly used in various industries however academic research are lagging in developing such standards.  Just the problem of cell line authentication is costing $4 billion.
Dr. Cousins:  There are multiple high throughput screening (HTS) academic centers around the world (150 in US).  So where does the industry go for best practices in assays?  Eli Lilly had developed a manual for HTS best practices and in 1984 made publicly available (Assay Guidance Manual).  To date there have been constant updates to this manual to incorporate new assays.  Workshops have been developed to train scientists in these best practices.
NIH has been developing new programs to address these reproducability issues.  Developed a method called
Ring Testing Initiative” where multiple centers involved in sharing reagents as well as assays and allowing scientists to test at multiple facilities.
Dr.Tong: Reproduceability of Microarrays:  As microarrays were the only methodology to do high through put genomics in the early 2000s, and although much research had been performed to standardize and achieve best reproduceability of the microarray technology (determining best practices in spotting RNA on glass slides, hybridization protocols, image analysis) little had been done on evaluating the reproducibility of results obtained from microarray experiments involving biological samples.  The advent of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning though can be used to help validate microarray results.  This was done in a Nature Biotechnology paper (Nature Biotechnology volume28pages827–838 (2010)) by an international consortium, the International MAQC (Microarray Quality Control) Society and can be found here
However Dr. Tong feels there is much confusion in how we define reproduceability.  Dr. Tong identified a few key points of data reproduceability:
  1. Traceability: what are the practices and procedures from going from point A to point B (steps in a protocol or experimental design)
  2. Repeatability:  ability to repeat results within the same laboratory
  3. Replicatablilty:  ability to repeat results cross laboratory
  4. Transferability:  are the results validated across multiple platforms?

The panel then discussed the role of journals and funders to drive reproduceability in research.  They felt that editors have been doing as much as they can do as they receive an end product (the paper) but all agreed funders need to do more to promote data validity, especially in requiring that systematic evaluation and validation of each step in protocols are performed..  There could be more training of PIs with respect to protocol and data validation.

Other Articles on Industry/Academic Research Partnerships and Translational Research on this Open Access Online Journal Include

Envisage-Wistar Partnership and Immunacel LLC Presents at PCCI

BIO Partnering: Intersection of Academic and Industry: BIO INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION June 23-26, 2014 | San Diego, CA

R&D Alliances between Big Pharma and Academic Research Centers: Pharma’s Realization that Internal R&D Groups alone aren’t enough

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Peer Review and Health Care Issues

Larry H. Bernstein, MD, FCAP, Reporter

https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/12/1/2014/Peer-Review-and-Health-Care-Issues

(Medscape – Dec 1, 2014)

Peer-reviewed journals retracted 110 papers over the last 2 years. Nature reports the grim details in “Publishing: the peer review scam”.

When a handful of authors were caught reviewing their own

papers, it exposed weaknesses in modern publishing systems.

Editors are trying to plug the holes.

 

The Hill reports that the FDA may lift its ban on blood donations from gay men. The American Red Cross has voiced its support for lifting of the ban.

Advisers for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will meet this week to decide whether gay men should be allowed to donate blood, the agency’s biggest step yet toward changing the 30-year-old policy.

If the FDA accepts the recommendation, it would roll back a policy that has been under strong pressure from LGBT advocates and some members of Congress for more than four years.

“We’ve got the ball rolling. I feel like this is a tide-turning vote,” said Ryan James Yezak, an LGBT activist who founded the National Gay Blood Drive and will speak at the meeting. “There’s been a lot of feet dragging and I think they’re realizing it now.”

Groups such as the American Red Cross and America’s Blood Centers also voiced support of the policy change this month, calling the ban “medically and scientifically unwarranted.”

The FDA will use the group’s recommendation to decide whether to change the policy.

“Following deliberations taking into consideration the available evidence, the FDA will issue revised guidance, if appropriate,” FDA spokeswoman Jennifer Rodriguez wrote in a statement.

This reporter has more than 20 years of Blood Bank experience.  The factor in favor of the recommendation is that the HIV 1/2 and other testing is accurate enough to leave the question of donor lifestyle irrelevant.  However, it remains to be seen whether the testing turnaround time is sufficient to prevent the release of units that may be contaminated prior to transfusion, which is problematic for platelets, that have short expirations. In all cases of donor infection, regardless of whether units are released, a finding leads to not releasing the product or to recall.

 

Democrats made a strategic mistake by passing the Affordable Care Act, Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), the third-ranking member of the Senate Democratic leadership, said Tuesday.

Schumer says Democrats “blew the opportunity the American people gave them” in the 2008 elections, a Democratic landslide, by focusing on healthcare reform instead of legislation to boost the middle class.

“After passing the stimulus, Democrats should have continued to propose middle class-oriented programs and built on the partial success of the stimulus,” he said in a speech at the National Press Club.

He said the plight of uninsured Americans caused by “unfair insurance company practices” needed to be addressed, but it wasn’t the change that people wanted when they elected Barack Obama as president.

“Americans were crying out for an end to the recession, for better wages and more jobs; not for changes in their healthcare,” he said.

This reader finds the observation by Senator Schumer very perceptive, regardless of whether the observation in hindsight might have had a different political outcome.  It has been noted that President Obama had a lot on his plate.  Moreover, we have not seen such a poor record of legislation in my lifetime.  There are underlying issues of worldview of elected officials that also contribute to the events.

 

THE PEER-REVIEW SCAM

BY CAT FERGUSON, ADAM MARCUS AND IVAN ORANSKY

N AT U R E |  2 7 N O V  2 0 1 4; VO L 5 1 5 : 480-82.

Most journal editors know how much effort it takes to persuade busy researchers to review a paper. That is why the editor of The Journal of Enzyme Inhibition and Medicinal Chemistry was puzzled by the reviews for manuscripts by one author — Hyung-In Moon, a medicinal-plant researcher then at Dongguk University in Gyeongju, South Korea.

The reviews themselves were not remarkable: mostly favourable, with some suggestions about how to improve the papers. What was unusual was how quickly they were completed — often within 24 hours. The turnaround was a little too fast, and Claudiu Supuran, the journal’s editor-in-chief, started to become suspicious.

In 2012, he confronted Moon, who readily admitted that the reviews had come in so quickly because he had written many of them himself. The deception had not been hard to set up. Supuran’s journal and several others published by Informa Healthcare in London
invite authors to suggest potential reviewers for their papers. So Moon provided names, sometimes of real scientists and sometimes pseudonyms, often with bogus e-mail addresses that would go directly to him or his colleagues. His confession led to the retraction of 28 papers by several Informa journals, and the resignation of an editor.

Moon’s was not an isolated case. In the past 2 years, journals have been forced to retract more than 110 papers in at least 6 instances of peer-review.

PEER-REVIEW RING
Moon’s case is by no means the most spectacular instance of peer-review rigging in recent years. That honour goes to a case that came to light in May 2013, when Ali Nayfeh, then editor-in-chief of the Journal of Vibration and Control, received some troubling news. An author who had submitted a paper to the journal told Nayfeh that he had received e-mails about it from two people claiming to be reviewers. Reviewers do not normally have direct contact with authors, and — strangely — the e-mails came from generic-looking Gmail accounts rather than from the professional institutional accounts that many academics use (see ‘Red flags in review’).
Nayfeh alerted SAGE, the company in Thousand Oaks, California, that publishes the journal. The editors there e-mailed both the Gmail addresses provided by the tipster, and the institutional addresses of the authors whose names had been used, asking for proof of identity and a list of their publications.ew rigging. What all these cases had in common was that researchers exploited vulnerabilities in the publishers’ computerized systems to dupe editors into accepting manuscripts, often by doing their own reviews. The cases involved publishing behemoths Elsevier, Springer, Taylor & Francis, SAGE and Wiley, as well as Informa, at least one of the systems — could make researchers vulnerable to even more serious identity theft. “For a piece of software that’s used by hundreds of thousands of academics worldwide, it really is appalling,” says Mark Dingemanse, a linguist at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, who has used some of these programs to publish and review papers.

A 14-month investigation that came to involve about 20 people from SAGE’s editorial, legal and production departments. It showed that the Gmail addresses were each linked to accounts with Thomson Reuters’ ScholarOne, a publication-management system used by SAGE and several other publishers, including Informa. Editors were able to track every paper that the person or people behind these accounts had allegedly written or reviewed, says SAGE spokesperson Camille Gamboa. They also checked the wording of reviews, the details of author-nominated reviewers, reference lists and the turnaround time for reviews (in some cases, only a few minutes). This helped the investigators to ferret out further suspicious-looking accounts; they eventually found 130.

SAGE investigators came to realize that authors were both reviewing and citing each other at an anomalous rate. Eventually, 60 articles were found to have evidence of peer-review tampering, involvement in the citation ring or both. “Due to the serious nature of the findings, we wanted to ensure we had researched all avenues as carefully as possible before contacting any of the authors and reviewers,” says Gamboa. When the dust had settled, it turned out that there was one author in the centre of the ring: Peter Chen, an engineer then at the National Pingtung University of Education (NPUE) in Taiwan, who was a co-author on practically all of the papers in question.

PASSWORD LOOPHOLE
Moon and Chen both exploited a feature of ScholarOne’s automated processes. When a reviewer is invited to read a paper, he or she is sent an e-mail with login information. If that communication goes to a fake e-mail account, the recipient can sign into the system under whatever name was initially submitted, with no additional identity verification. Jasper Simons, vice-president of product and market strategy for Thomson Reuters in Charlottesville, Virginia, says that ScholarOne is a respected peer-review system and that it is the responsibility of journals and their editorial teams to invite properly qualified reviewers for their papers.

ScholarOne is not the only publishing system with vulnerabilities. Editorial Manager, built by Aries Systems in North Andover, Massachusetts, is used by many societies and publishers, including Springer and PLOS. The American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington DC uses a system developed in-house for its journals Science, Science Translational Medicine and Science Signaling, but its open-access offering, Science Advances, uses Editorial Manager. Elsevier, based in Amsterdam, uses a branded version of the same product, called the Elsevier Editorial System.

Usually, editors in the United States and Europe know the scientific community in those regions well enough to catch potential conflicts of interest between authors and reviewers. But Lindsay says that Western editors can find this harder with authors from Asia — “where often none of us knows the suggested reviewers”. In these cases, the journal insists on at least one independent reviewer, identified and invited by the editors.

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Reporter: Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN

 

 

READ THE HISTORY OF PeerJ

https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/open-access-scientific-journal/peerj-model-for-open-access-online-scientific-journal/

 

From: PeerJ <newsletter@peerj.com>
Date: Wed, 12 Jun 2013 18:10:54 +0000
To: AvivaLev-Ari <Avivalev-ari@alum.Berkeley.edu>
Subject: PeerJ turned One today – help us celebrate by entering our competition

PeerJ
Hi Aviva,
We are very pleased to announce <http://blog.peerj.com/post//celebrating-the-one-year-anniversary-of-peerj>  that this is the one year anniversary of PeerJ – it was on June 12th, 2012 that we first announced ourselves and started the process towards becoming a fully-fledged publishing company. Today, just 12 months later, PeerJ is completely up and running; we are publishing high quality peer-reviewed science; and we are doing our very best to change the world by pushing the boundaries of Open Access!

To briefly overview what has been achieved in the last year – we announced ourselves on June 12th 2012 and opened the PeerJ doors for submissions on December 3rd. We published our first PeerJ articles on Feb 12th 2013, and followed up by launching PeerJ PrePrints on April 3rd 2013. This last year has been spent recruiting an Editorial Board of 800 world renowned researchers; building cutting edge submission, peer-review, publication and pre-print software from scratch; establishing ourselves with all the major organizations who archive, index, list and certify new publications; and building an entirely new type <http://blog.peerj.com/post/46261563342/6-reasons-to-publish-with-peerj>  of publishing company from the ground up.

Some of the highlights have included:

* the fantastic reception <http://svpow.com/2012/08/30/peerj-sorted/>  to our membership model <https://peerj.com/pricing/&gt;  which means that authors now have a way to publish for their lifetime for a single low price payment (starting at just $99);

* the fact that we have been processing submissions with extreme speed and effectiveness <http://blog.peerj.com/post/45340534713/peerj-is-fast> ;

* the fact that our Open Peer Review process has been so well received <http://blog.peerj.com/post/43139131280/the-reception-to-peerjs-open-peer-review>  with over 40% of reviewers now providing their name and almost 80% of authors making their reviews public;

* being named by the Chronicle of Higher Education as one of the “Top 10 Tech Innovators in the Education Sector <http://chronicle.com/article/The-Idea-Makers-Tech/138823/> ” and by Nature as “a significant innovation <http://www.nature.com/news/journal-offers-flat-fee-for-all-you-can-publish-1.10811> ”;

* and of course the fact that the journal has turned out to be so innovative <http://blog.peerj.com/post/42920094844/peerj-functionality> , beautiful and aesthetically pleasing <http://theseamonster.net/2013/05/peerj-awesomeness/> .

The giveaway

We are celebrating this milestone with a new PeerJ Competition. On June 19th, we will give away 12 “complimentary publication” passes (the ability to publish one paper with us at no cost to you or any of your co-authors) + a PeerJ Charlie T-Shirt + a pin + a fridge magnet (!) to a random selection of 12 people (one for each month of our first year) who publicly post some variation of the following message:

“PeerJ just turned one! Open access publishing, for just $99 for life – check them out and submit now!”

Please include a link to us as well (you choose the best one!).

The last year has been an intense journey, and to be honest we have been so busy we almost missed the anniversary! We would like to take this opportunity to thank the many thousands of researchers who have signed up as PeerJ Members; all those who have authored or reviewed articles; all those who have joined our Editorial Board; and anyone who have simply expressed their support – without the involvement and enthusiasm of these people we would not be where we are today. Of course, we must also thank our dedicated staff (Alf Eaton, Patrick McAndrew and Jackie Thai) and Tim O’Reilly, who collectively took a chance on a brand new publishing concept, but who have been irreplaceable in making us what we are today!

Please encourage your colleagues to look into PeerJ, and make sure they consider submitting their next article to us. The future of academic publishing is here, right now <http://blog.peerj.com/post/46261563342/6-reasons-to-publish-with-peerj> .

The PeerJ Founders
and the PeerJ Team

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Reporter: Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN

Publishing’s Gender Gap

Female scholars are gaining ground in publishing, but cluster in sub-disciplines and tend not to be listed as first or last authors.

By Beth Marie Mole | October 23, 2012

Marie Curie, Wikimedia, UnknownThe percentage of women authors in academic publishing has risen to 30 percent since 1665, but women are still less likely to be first or last author, and tend to cluster in sub-disciplines, according toresearchers at the University of Washington who analyzed two million academic papers published from 1665 to 2010 by 2.7 million scientists, social scientists, and humanities scholars.

“The results show us what a lot of people have been saying and many of my female colleagues have been feeling,” environmental scientist Jennifer Jacquet of New York University, who was involved in the study, told The Chronicle of Higher Education. “Things are getting better for women in academia,” despite the fact that they are still not publishing at the same rate and level as their male counterparts.

Mining JSTOR, a digital archive of scholarly publications, the researchers tagged articles by field and subfield of research, then used data from the Social Security Administration to identify author age. Most importantly, they also tagged authors by gender, assuming that if a name was used 95 percent of the time for one gender it was probably accurate. Publications with androgynous author names were left out of the analysis.

In 2010, when women scholars reached 30 percent of published authors, women made up 42 percent of full-time faculty, 34 percent of which were tenured professors. This suggests that although women are continually gaining ground in publishing—only 27 percent of authors publishing between 1990 and 2010 were women—they are still not publishing at the same rate as men. Moreover, women are under-represented as the coveted first author, the lead author on the research, as well as last author, considered the senior researcher on the study. In molecular and cellular biology, for example, women made up 30 percent of the authors but only 16.5 percent of the last authors. And only about 19 percent of women were first author overall, with the majority falling in the second, third, or fourth author listed.

When the researchers looked at the gender distribution among sub-disciplines, they found additional disparities. For example, although women comprised 30 percent of authors overall, some subfields, such as paleontology, had only 16.6 percent female authors.

Despite the gaps in publishing, the data don’t necessarily provide evidence for gender discrimination. “The international literature show that when women submit work, there is no bias in it being accepted, but the likelihood of women submitting work may be lower,” human development professor Wendy Williams of Cornell University, who studies women’s role in science, told The Chronicle. Still, most believe the results warrant further study.

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