What Savvy Open Scholars Know and Do

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Virginia Tech. University Libraries


An open scholar’s work can be accessed and read earlier, and by more people. It can be quickly cited and built upon, and is more likely to have impact. Open access doesn’t require paying hefty author fees: savvy scholars use preprint servers, institutional repositories, and archival data repositories to make their work visible and public. ArXiv, born in 1991, is integral to the physical-sciences publishing tradition. In other fields, green open access with preprint servers is just taking off: bioRxiv, SocArxiv, EngrXiv, ChemRxiv, and others, are gaining acceptance. A large majority of journals now accept submissions previously deposited in preprint servers. Scholars who update their preprints post-peer review ensure their corrected articles are accessible. Archiving data and figures on data repositories to get digital object identifiers and an open license, then citing them in the manuscript, simplifies future reuse of the figures. Savvy open scholars are working to slash the hurdles for researchers to receive academic credit for all their output, including software and data. New-wave journals led by open scholars carry out double-open peer review, in public. Open scholars know about implicit bias in the review process, and seek to protect early career researchers and minority groups. They also scoff at metrics like the journal impact factor used to evaluate researchers, and work in their communities to change flawed promotion processes. The more savvy scholars invest in teaching their students about all this, planting the seeds of infrastructural change towards open science.

[NOTE: The audio for this recording is poor, and captions may be inaccurate.]



Open access, Preprints, Open data, Open source