Open access publishing

For my third blog post “Open Access”, I choose to describe the details of a peer-reviewed and online open access journal “Scientific Reports” that falls under nature publishing group from the United Kingdom. This journal publishes research related to natural sciences. On their website, they state that they look for research (quality wise) that is:

  • “Scientifically valid
  • High technical quality
  • Methodologically, analytically, statistically and ethically robust
  • Reproducible
  • Comprehensively analysed
  • Convincing, with claims fully supported by data
  • Discussed in context of previous literature
  • An original contribution to existing knowledge
  • Not overstated or exaggerated”

They describe “increased citation and usage, greater public engagement, faster impact, broader collaboration, and increased interdisciplinary interaction” as the benefits of open access publication.

What I really like about this journal is that it lets you publish based on the correctness of the methodology and the analysis of the findings rather than its impact or significance. This points back to ethics where we learned about researchers falsifying data in an attempt to publish breakthrough results. It seems to me that we can have a better check on data falsification by introducing more open access journals like this, where scientists are encouraged to submit technically sound data without having to stress about the broad application of their work.

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2 Responses to Open access publishing

  1. Good post and good thoughts. I believe, like you do, that incentives to cheat may be too high due to the focus on research novelty. I have heard before that only surprises matter in research (I believe the original quote came from Milton Friedman). I haven’t thought about this statement long enough to agree or disagree, but it is a popular enough quote that researchers are hearing it and likely adopting it. How different would the comprehensive body of research look if all work was done at a very high standard? I am willing to bet it might not be recognizable. Thanks for the post.

  2. maryammoarefian says:

    I like your post because you specified the criteria of a high-quality publication. Also, you indicate publishing in the open-access journal is going to improve the quality of a publication and reduce falsification of data. If it is the fact, do you know the reason for authors’ resistance in publishing open-access articles?
    Do authors think open-access publications have less prestige because of APCs and submission charge?
    Your post has a good impact on reducing this resistivity. Thank you.

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