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Megajournals and other innovations in academic journal publishing


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Desde a implementação generalizada de periódicos on-line e a introdução do acesso aberto há mais de uma década, o ritmo da inovação na publicação de periódicos acadêmicos tem sido lento. Mais recentemente, no entanto, uma série de inovações apareceu na publicação de periódicos, que têm o potencial de causar mudanças de longo alcance no modo como comunicamos informação científica. Entre essas tendências está o surgimento dos Megajournals e, em particular do PLoS ONE, que nos últimos anos veio a dominar periódicos em acesso aberto. Estes periódico, embora revisados por pares nos aspectos de solidez e metodológica científica, aceitam uma ampla variedade de artigos, sobre os quais perguntas como “Qual a importância do trabalho” ou “é relevante para o público” não são critérios para a rejeição, como em muitos outros periódicos. Muitas vezes ligado a Megajournals estão casos de periódicos em cascata, onde o publisher tem um periódico com uma marca forte e muitas submissões.

Since the widespread implementation of online journals and the introduction of open access more than a decade ago, the pace of innovation in academic journal publishing has been slow. More recently however a number of innovations have appeared in journal publishing, which have the potential to cause far reaching changes in how we communicate scientific information. Among these trends is the raise of Megajournals and in particular PLoS ONE which have within the last few years come to dominate open access journals. These journals although peer reviewed for scientific and methodological soundness accept a wider variety of articles as questions such as “How important is the work” or “is it relevant to the audience” are not criteria for rejection as in many other journals. Often linked to Megajournals are cases of cascading journals where a publisher has a journal with a strong brand and many submissions.

Desde la implementación generalizada de revistas en línea y la introducción del acceso abierto hace más de una década, el ritmo de la innovación en la edición de revistas académicas ha sido lento. Más recientemente, sin embargo, una serie de innovaciones han aparecido en la publicación de revistas, que tienen el potencial de causar cambios de gran alcance en la forma en que comunicamos la información científica. Entre estas tendencias está el aumento de Megarevistas y en particular PLoS ONE que en los últimos años ha llegado a dominar las revistas de acceso abierto. Estas revistas aunque revisadas por pares, por su solidez científica y metodológica aceptan una variedad más amplia de artículos puesto que cuestiones tales como “¿qué tan importante es el trabajo?” o “¿es relevante para el público?” no son criterios para el rechazo como en muchas otras revistas. A menudo vinculadas a Megarevistas están los casos de las revistas en cascada donde una editorial tiene una revista con una marca sólida y muchas presentaciones.

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Megajournals and other innovations in academic journal publishing

  1. 1. Megajournals and other innovations in academic journal publishing Hooman Momen Coordinator WHO Press
  2. 2. Statistics about scientific journals  Over 10,000 journal publishers  Publishing more than 25,000 journals  1.5 million articles per year 2| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  3. 3. Mega-Journals  Aims to publish any article that meets the test of scientific rigour. – Technically sound in method and conclusions – Peer review  Eschews any measure of importance or impact in its editorial and peer review process. – no need for conceptual advance, novelty or impact – negative results are accepted – results with a narrow community of interest. 3| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  4. 4. PLOS ONE  Launched in December 2006  In 2007 published 1,231 articles  Today largest journal in the World – published over 60,000 articles  In 2012 – – – – – 4| 23,464 articles published 60,000 reviewers from 154 countries 4000 articles from Chinese authors Over 2% of content in Pubmed >30,000 articles in 2013 Publishing | 6 November 2013
  5. 5. PLOS ONE criteria for publication  The study presents the results of primary scientific research.  Results reported have not been published elsewhere.  Experiments, statistics, and other analyses are performed to a high technical standard and are described in sufficient detail.  Conclusions are presented in an appropriate fashion and are supported by the data.  The article is presented in an intelligible fashion and is written in standard English.  The research meets all applicable standards for the ethics of experimentation and research integrity.  The article adheres to appropriate reporting guidelines and community standards for data availability. 5| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  6. 6. 6| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  7. 7. PLOS ONE Impact factor 7| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  8. 8. Scientific Reports  Published by Nature Publishing Group  Publishes in all areas of the natural sciences  Impact factor 2.93, Acceptance rate 55%  fee USD 1,350.  Launched in 2011 (over 2500 papers published) – Currently over 200 papers per month  Cascades articles from other Nature journals. 8| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  9. 9. (Mega) - journals  AIP Advances (AIP) Impact factor 1.35, fee USD 1,350  BMJ Open (BMJ) Impact Factor 1.58, fee UKL 1,500  Open Biology (Royal Society), fee USD 0  Cell Reports (Cell Press) fee USD 5000  Biology Open ( Company of Biologists) fee USD 1,350  Springer Plus (Springer) fee USD 1135  Sage Open (Sage) fee USD 99  F1000 Research (Faculty of 1000) fee USD 1000 9| Publishing | 6 November 2013
  10. 10. eLife  Funders taking responsibility for publishing: – Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Max Planck Society, Wellcome Trust – Publication costs are research costs  Current publishing system – particularly the top tier journals – not working in the best interest of researchers  No fees, published about 300 articles  Driving innovation in the way research is communicated – publish outstanding science under an open-access license – create an editorial process that is decisive, fair and efficient – Fully utilize digital media in the presentation of new research 10 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  11. 11. PeerJ  An Open Access, peer-reviewed, scholarly journal. – Launched in 2013  Operates a 'Lifetime Membership' model. – 3 Membership tiers, each conferring different rights. – Starting at USD 99.00  Encourages Open Peer-Review – authors given the option to post the full peer-review history of their submission alongside their published article  157 articles published in 2013 (Sept) 11 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  12. 12. PLOS Currents  PLOS Currents is an innovative, online publication channel, peer-reviewed; citable; publicly archived in PubMed.  A single, integrated direct-authoring and publishing platform - complete control over the formatting and appearance of Author published work.  Streamlined peer review process  Submission reviewed in a matter of days and published immediately after editorial acceptance  Uses Annotum (WordPress) platform 12 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  13. 13. Hindawi Publishing  Publishing company based in Cairo, Egypt.  In 2012, published more than 22,000 articles with total revenue of about $13m.  This is about $600 per published article.  results for the first half of 2012 show revenues of $6.3m with a net profit of $3.3m.  Profit margin of 52%. Much better than Elsevier (36% profit margin on revenue). 13 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  14. 14. Profit margins  Elsevier: £724m on revenue of £2b — 36%  Springer‘s Science+Business Media: £294m on revenue of £866m — 33.9%  John Wiley & Sons: $106m on revenue of $253m — 42%  Academic division of Informa plc: £47m on revenue of £145m — 32.4%  Apple’s best ever reported profit margin was 24%. Exxon makes 6.5%. 14 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  15. 15. Chinese authors  According to SCI – In 2011, authors of 9.5% of scientific papers indexed in SCI. – More than a million papers published in last decade.  Salaries, grants and promotions tied to publication in SCI journals  Nearly 20% of papers published in PLOS One in 2012 – More than 4 million USD in revenue from Chinese authors 15 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  16. 16. Who's afraid of Peer Review  Spoof paper concocted by Science journalist, J. Bohannon – mundane scientific paper, with grave errors that a competent peer reviewer could easily identify as flawed and unpublishable.  304 versions submitted to different OA journals /publishers  Over 50% of journals accepted  Among publishers accepting paper: Elsevier, Wolters Kluwer, Sage  Among publishers rejecting paper: PloS, Hindawi 16 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  17. 17. Beall's List of Predatory Publishers  Provision of funding to meet OA costs has encouraged growth of new OA journals  Last year's list included 23 publishers  and this year's has over 225,  evidence of the rapid growth in the number of predatory journals and publishers.  17 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  18. 18. What authors need to look for  Serious reviewers? feedback from a qualified journal editor?  Good copyediting? Self-archiving rights?  Effective distribution and active promotion of the journal?  A definite/known/knowable target audience?  Print-on-demand or print issue options?  Clear and attractive publication contracts?  Suitably-measured/meaningful impact factors? Indexed journals?  Active link referencing? Supplementary data storage?  Reader feedback management? 18 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  19. 19. SciELO  The database contains journals from over 15 different countries in free and universal access, full-text format.  1.069 Journals  30.190 journal issues  444.056 articles  Nearly 10,000,000 citations 19 | Publishing | 6 November 2013
  20. 20. Article-Level Metrics  Citations – ISI, Scopus, Google Scholar, PubMed Central, CrossRef  Article usage – Page views, downloads  Media and blog coverage about the article  Social tools – Social bookmarks e.g. Connotea, Twitter, Facebook etc.  Reader evaluation 20 | Publishing | 6 November 2013