News and notes for biofolk from January, 2016

I was interested to see that PLOS Biology has a new meta-research section. This is their description “Low reproducibility rates have undermined trust in the scientific enterprise. Meta-research, or the scientific study of research practices, is an emerging field that aims to characterize existing standards and ultimately improve the quality and reliability of scientific research. To mark the launch of a new data-driven meta-research section in PLOS Biology, we collect here some meta-research ‘classics’, as well as some of the most recent offerings, across PLOS. These articles highlight key issues that hinder the scientific effort and offer ways to improve research practices.” More info: A Proactive Approach to Reproducibility with Evidence-Based Research on Research.

Genomics and the Era of Personalized Medicine series continues on the medical campus, Wednesday afternoons. Most of the past talks are available in Digital Commons @ Becker for WU users: digitalcommons.wustl.edu/genomics_medicine_series/.

I don’t share all the stories about deceptive publishing practices, hijacked journals, etc.; there are too many. I do maintain some links about this issue on the Author Beware research guide. But I thought this story was was worth sharing because even well-respected publishers like the American Chemical Society can be hijacked and I know some biology faculty have published in Journal of Natural Products (the real one, not the copycat). Another Respected Society Journal Victimized by Title Thief.

bioRxiv preprints can now be submitted directly to several leading research journals “The first journals to participate in this initiative are Biophysical Journal, eLife, The EMBO Journal, EMBO Molecular Medicine, EMBO Reports, G3:Genes/Genomes/Genetics, Genetics, Genome Research, and Molecular Systems Biology. Direct submission to Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America will also soon be available.” There are still a few journals which will not publish articles when preprints have been previously shared but this custom does seem to be changing pretty rapidly in many disciplines. If you must publish is a specific journal, be sure to check their policy about preprints before sharing your work pre-publication. There is a Wikipedia List of academic journals by preprint policy which you may find handy, but don’t depend too heavily on it; use the links for consulting the actual current publisher policies.

Posts on Scholarly Communications @ WU Libraries from January:

About the author

Ruth is a librarian at Washington University for biology, math, history of science; she is also scholarly communications coordinator. Email: rlewis@wustl.edu Phone: 314-935-4819