WU results from changing workflows and innovations in scholarly communications survey

In January, I shared a link to a changing workflows and innovations in scholarly communications survey. The data from this worldwide survey is now available: zenodo.org/record/49583. I will try to share comments and analyses in the future.

Meanwhile, I received data about the 85 WU responses which used the special link, Jan-Feb. 2016. This is just a small group of scholars at Washington University, so I’ll just share a little bit of the data.

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(By contrast the worldwide data with 20663 responses answered that same question with 79% YES, 9% I DON’T KNOW, and 8% NO RESPONSE, 3% NO.)

What do you think will be the most important development in scholarly communication in the coming years? (Categories added; some comments repeated in more than one category)

    Access to information: dissemination and sharing

  • Sharing more easily
  • Big data, cloud share
  • Greater number of papers become free to access (at least the pre-print versions)
  • Understanding of research by general population and accessibility of that information
  • How we are able disseminate health information and findings
  • Better use of social media to communicate with other scholars if not general public
  • Encouraging researchers to present their work outside of academia by better utilizing social media
  • Greater electronic access and updates across multiple sites- perhaps instant translation
  • Online open access
  • Dynamic PDF viewing
  • Impact on research

  • Tools that specialize in area such as cancer prevention that send pre-published work. JCO has a great one. This has helped me tremendously
  • Open access and measuring the impact of open access publications/projects
  • How to streamline information and guarantee its credibility
  • Evolving papers
  • Access to larger number of databases at a lesser cost
  • Sharing more easily
  • Greater electronic access and updates across multiple sites- perhaps instant translation
  • What will actually happen vs. what I would like to see happen are two different things. I personally would like to see barriers taken down for who has access to scholarly journals. I would also like to see more articles published that do not have significant findings but still contribute to science. I would like to see faculty less stressed about publishing and gaining tenure and more concerned with making a difference in the community in which they research and also mentoring students with similar research interests.
  • Increased access for public to research findings
  • Greater number of papers become free to access (at least the pre-print versions)
  • Understanding of research by general population and accessibility of that information
  • Economic implications

  • Moving back to regional repositories. Each institution maintaining a repository (staff and $) is ridiculous
  • Access to larger number of databases at a lesser cost
  • Disappearance of traditional high-price journals
  • Greater number of papers become free to access (at least the pre-print versions)
  • Structural implications

  • Moving back to regional repositories. Each institution maintaining a repository (staff and $) is ridiculous
  • Big data, cloud share
  • Disappearance of traditional high-price journals
  • Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR)
  • Model set by the physics ArXiv
  • I think paper publishing will require some sort of additional step such as placing one’s work in a hierarchical content aggregator. A paper will be one task and plugging into the broader conversation will be the other
  • Tool and transition issues

  • Transition to open access that may be quite painful
  • Failure of most tools to deliver actual value
  • Realizing that most of the tools aren’t worth very much
  • Changes in copyright law

Thanks to Carol Mollman for pie chart and comment sorting.

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