Weekly digest: Open Pharma, translation tools, and equity in open access

Mark Elms

This week, we highlight our new article on the aims and work of Open Pharma that was published in the latest issue of the AMWA Journal, as well as another article in the journal on how translational tools can help bridge the language gap. We also read the report from the final OASPA workshop on equity in open access. We hear about the winners of the ALPSP 2023 awards and about a new cOAlition S working group. Finally, we highlight the upcoming International Day for Universal Access to Information and a webinar about a new, open access neurology journal.

To read:

Open Pharma: driving positive change in the communication of pharma-sponsored research via the AMWA Journal | 20-minute read

This article, published in the journal of the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA), discusses the position statement, aims and infrastructure of Open Pharma. Written by our very own Jo Gordon, the article looks at how we at Open Pharma aim to make the communication of pharma-sponsored research faster, more transparent, more accessible and more sustainable by incorporating open science principles – like open access, plain language summaries (PLS), discoverability and data sharing – into pharma-sponsored research publishing. You can also read and endorse our position statement here.

Can translational tools bridge the language gap in science? via the AMWA Journal | 16-minute read

The majority of scientific articles are published in English despite 83% of the world’s population not speaking the language. This means there is an unmet need to provide published scientific information in a wider range of languages. This article, published in the AMWA Journal, looked at how well the online translation tool Google Translate did when translating abstracts and PLS from five medical journal publications from English into French, German, Mandarin and Slovenian. The research found that translations of both abstracts and PLS were “accurate” and “reliable”, highlighting the potential usefulness of Google Translate as a quick, free and easy option for non-English speakers wishing to read published articles.

A report from OASPA’s final Equity in OA workshop via OASPA | 18-minute read

Over the course of 2023, the Open Access Scholarly Publishing Association (OASPA) has been running a series of workshops aiming to create and enhance equity in open access. The final workshop took place in June and focused on perceptions and prestige in open access publishing, as well as funding pathways for sustainable and inclusive open access publishing without author charges. This blog post from OASPA summarizes the main findings and you can read the full report from the final workshop here.

IOP Publishing wins ALPSP Impact Award 2023 via STM Publishing News | 5-minute read

The Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP) held its annual awards ceremony in Manchester, UK, on 14 September 2023. This year’s winner of the ALPSP Impact Award was IOP Publishing for its work on combining double anonymous and transparent peer review. Other award winners included BMJ Impact Analytics and Medwave/Kriyadocs, who jointly won the Innovation in Publishing Award, and Pippa Smart (Consultant at PSP Consulting), who won the Contribution to Scholarly Publishing Award.

cOAlition S announces new working group focused on equity in open access via PLOS | 2-minute read

In partnership with Jisc and PLOS, cOAlition S has announced a new multi-stakeholder working group aimed at identifying business models and arrangements that enhance equity in open science. From a field of over 60 applications, cOAlition S has whittled down the stakeholders to representatives from 14 organizations. These include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Cambridge University Press, CERN, the Chinese Academy of Science, Couperin Consortium, eLife, the European Mathematical Society, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, LIBER, Lyrasis, the Open Access 2020 Initiative, PeerJ, SciELO and Science Europe.

Advancing open access through read-and-publish agreements via OUPblog | 4-minute read

Oxford University Press (OUP) and Jisc have had a read-and-publish agreement in place since 2021, which has allowed Jisc-affiliated UK university researchers to freely access and publish in OUP journals. This blog post, written by Charley James Lawrance (Senior Marketing Manager for Open Access at OUP) and Alexandra Marchbank (Assistant Manager for Open Access Strategy at OUP), looks at some of the achievements of this agreement, such as increased publishing of open access articles, increased citations for open access articles, and increased downloads of open access articles compared with paywalled research.

To engage with:

The International Day for Universal Access to Information via UNESCO

The United Nations (UN) is celebrating the International Day for Universal Access to Information on 28 September 2023! The day will centre around a global celebration taking place in Oxford, UK, which will include panel sessions and roundtables. The focus of this year’s event will be “the importance of the online space for access to information”, with talks on internet accessibility and connectivity, the role of various stakeholders in securing the proper functioning of the internet, the need for international cooperation for strengthening access to information, and achieving the goals of Agenda 2030. You can register for the event here!

Virtual panel discussion with the editor of Imaging Neuroscience via MIT Libraries

Earlier this year, a mass exodus of editors from two Elsevier neurology journals over a dispute about high article processing charges made headlines in the publishing world. Now, some of these editors have created a new, open access neurology journal called Imaging Neuroscience. As part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Open Access Week celebrations, join Nick Lindsay (Director of Journals and Open Access at MIT Press) and Katharine Dunn (Scholarly Communications Librarian at MIT) for a webinar as they speak to the Editor-in-Chief of Imaging Neuroscience, Stephen Smith (Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Oxford), about leaving commercial publishing and creating a not-for-profit journal. You can register for the webinar here!

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