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Research Blog Series: Open Publishing

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Research Blog Series: Open Publishing

By 8 January 2018March 18th, 2021No Comments

Continuing the Research Blog series, Estelle Dercleye presents her work exploring multiple aspects of open publishing.

Open Access Publishing Stakeholders event in 2014

Project: Open publishing

Investigators: Estelle Derclaye (PI); Giancarlo Frosio (postdoc) and Kenneth Wilson (doctoral researcher) University of Nottingham

What did your research aim to do?
This project examined the current trends, advantages, disadvantages, problems and solutions, opportunities and barriers in open publishing, and in particular open academic publishing

How did you do it?
Literature review, workshop and PhD thesis

What are your key findings?
The literature review identified a number of research gaps namely in the areas of

I: Historical Perspective on Open Access Publishing (OAP)
II: Copyright Protection and Theory and OAP
III: Economics and Business Models in the field of OAP more particularly:
III.1. Open University, Open Education and Open Educational Resources
III.2 Academic Scholars, Reputation, Prestige and Careers and OAP
III.3. Academic Publishing Market
III.3.1. Competition issues
III.3.2. Cost of Closed Access
III.3.3. Article Processing Charges
III.3.4. OA Book Publishing
IV: OA Mandate Policies and in particular:
IV.1. Complying with and Enforcing OA
IV.2. Academic Freedom and OAP
IV.3. Rationale for OA Book Publishing and Mandate Policies

What impact has your work had so far/what impact do you anticipate it will have?
The workshop enabled participants to meet and debate the issues and for many to meet for the first time, generating networking and collaboration possibilities. The paper has been accessed 6,326 via the CREATe site and Google Scholar shows that it has been cited 15 times. The thesis has not yet had any impact as it is not yet published .

Challenges encountered/Lessons learned
The topic of open access publishing is broad and it was hard at first to define the contours of the literature review to ensure it was submitted on time.

Issues around open access, especially open academic, publishing are also very polarised between the different stakeholders as became even more apparent at the workshop. However, this was managed adequately and the workshop was a success and participants were very complimentary about it.

Are there additional/new research questions still to be answered in this area?
Some of the gaps found in the literature review were not answered by the PhD thesis due to limited space in the PhD. The PhD thesis sought to answer part of the gaps relating to the theory, history, management, compliance and enforcement of open academic publishing.

Additional gaps were identified at the workshop, see the blog post for more details.

How has your association with CREATe helped to take things forward?
The project has helped the team to understand the concept and workings of open publishing much better and put it in its different contexts, for instance how different it is in the social sciences and humanities compared to STEM subjects. It has also enabled the different stakeholders to meet, debate and create a network of people interested on OA who share their knowledge and use the network to further ask questions, contribute to the debate and advance mutual understanding, scientific research as well as lobbying in this respect.

For more information see the project page, event blog post and the CREATe Working Paper.