Weekly digest: data sharing, science–policy interface and open access agreements

Mark Elms

This week, we hear about the state of data sharing and transparency in the real world, and the relationship between open science and the science–policy interface. We also read about the signing of new open access agreements between publishing companies and research institutes, as well as a new OASPA membership category to improve representation among its stakeholders. Finally, we share an opportunity to participate in an annual survey that focuses on data sharing and handling.

To read:

Talk is cheap when it comes to data sharing via Nature | 3-minute read

There is a substantial disparity between the numbers of researchers who say they’ll share data and the numbers who actually do. This is the finding of a recent study published in The Journal of Clinical Epidemiology that is discussed in this Nature article. The study analysed 3556 articles published in a month by 282 BMC journals and identified 1792 that provided statements saying that data were available upon reasonable request. However, following email requests for data, only 14% of the corresponding authors from these articles responded, and only 7% provided usable data. The article concludes by discussing potential reasons for this lack of data sharing and potential solutions to the problem.

The relationship between open science and the science–policy interface via BMC Health Research Policy and Systems | 25-minute read

As has been highlighted by the pandemic, scientific advice is crucial for policymakers to make informed decisions about immediate and long-term problems. It is often postulated that open science should only help policymakers use science. But is there any evidence to back this up? This is the question posed by this article written by Stefan Reichmann and Bernhard Wieser from TU Graz and published in BMC Health Research Policy and Systems. They argue that there currently exists an ‘evidence–policy gap’ between science and policymakers and that contemporary evidence has not yet demonstrated that open science has been able to bridge this gap.

Italian research institutes sign open access agreement with Wiley via Wiley | 1-minute read

The multinational publishing company Wiley has open access agreements with more than 40 partners around the world. Now included in this number is a consortium of research institutes and hospitals in Italy called Bibliosan. The Bibliosan consortium comprises 68 research institutes and all biomedical research libraries across Italy. This agreement will provide researchers with access to all of Wiley’s journals and will also enable researchers to publish articles open access in all of Wiley’s hybrid and gold open access journals.

University of California and SAGE publishing collaborate to expand open access via STM Publishing | 2-minute read

Seven of the 10 constituent campuses of the University of California (UC) are currently ranked within the top 100 institutes in the world for research output. Therefore, the recent announcement of an agreement between UC and SAGE Publishing to expand open access publishing across all 10 UC campuses will come as welcome news to proponents of the open access movement. Follow the links to learn more about the open access agreements of SAGE and the University of California.

OASPA announces new supporter memberships via STM Publishing | 2-minute read

The Open Access Scholarly Publishing Association (OASPA) has announced a new membership category that will allow organizations and individuals without a publishing programme to join and support OASPA. OASPA hopes that this new membership class will enhance discussions around open access in research with a more inclusive, diverse and representative stakeholder demographic. You can read more about the new membership class, as well as other ways to support OASPA, here.

To engage with:

Participate in a survey on data sharing and open data via Springer Nature | 20-minute read

Now into its 7th year, the annual State of Open Data survey is now open. The survey, managed by Springer Nature, figshare and Digital Science, aims to find out global experiences and attitudes within research towards data sharing, data handling and any other data-related challenges. The survey closes on 18 July 2022.

Have you seen our recent commentary about user perspectives on plain language summaries? Read it here in Current Medical Research and Opinion.