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Launching today: Open Science Case Studies

By Kirsty, on 29 April 2024

Announcement from Paul Ayris, Pro-Vice Provost, UCL Library, Culture, Collections and Open Science

A close up of old leather-bound books on a shelfHow can Open Science/Open Research support career progression and development? How does the adoption of Open Science/Open Research approaches benefit individuals in the course of their career?

The UCL Open Science Office, in conjunction with colleagues across UCL, has produced a series of Case Studies showing how UCL academics can use Open Science/Open Research approaches in their plans for career development, in applications for promotion and in appraisal documents.

In this way, Open Science/Open Research practice can become part of the Research Culture that UCL is developing.

The series of Case Studies covers each of the 8 pillars of Open Science/Open Research. They can be found on a new webpage: Open Science Case Studies 4 UCL.

It is only fair that academics should be rewarded for developing their skills and adopting best practice in research and in its equitable dissemination. The Case Studies show how this can be done, and each Case Study identifies a Key Message which UCL academics can use to shape their activities.

Examples of good practice are:

  • Publishing outputs as Open Access outputs
  • Sharing research data which is used as the building block of academic books and papers
  • Creating open source software which is then available for others to re-use and develop
  • Adopting practices allied to Reproducibility and Research Integrity
  • The responsible use of Bibliometrics
  • Public Engagement: Citizen Science and Co-Production as mechanisms to deliver results

Contact the UCL Open Science Office for further information at openscience@ucl.ac.uk.

UCL open access output: 2023 state-of-play

By Kirsty, on 15 April 2024

Post by Andrew Gray (Bibliometrics Support Officer) and Dominic Allington Smith (Open Access Publications Manager)

Summary

UCL is a longstanding and steadfast supporter of open access publishing, organising funding and payment for gold open access, maintaining the UCL Discovery repository for green open access, and monitoring compliance with REF and research funder open access requirements.  Research data can  be made open access in the Research Data Repository, and UCL Press also publish open access books and journals.

The UCL Bibliometrics Team have recently conducted research to analyse UCL’s overall open access output, covering both total number of papers in different OA categories, and citation impact.  This blog post presents the key findings:

  1. UCL’s overall open access output has risen sharply since 2011, flattened around 80% in the last few years, and is showing signs of slowly growing again – perhaps connected with the growth of transformative agreements.
  2. The relative citation impact of UCL papers has had a corresponding increase, though with some year-to-year variation.
  3. UCL’s open access papers are cited around twice as much, on average, as non-open-access papers.
  4. UCL is consistently the second-largest producer of open access papers in the world, behind Harvard University.
  5. UCL has the highest level of open access papers among a reference group of approximately 80 large universities, at around 83% over the last five years.

Overview and definitions

Publications data is taken from the InCites database.  As such, the data is primarily drawn from InCites papers attributed to UCL, filtered down to only articles, reviews, conference proceedings, and letters. It is based on published affiliations to avoid retroactive overcounting in past years: existing papers authored by new starters at UCL are excluded.

The definition of “open access” provided by InCites is all open access material – gold, green, and “bronze”, a catch-all category for material that is free-to-read but does not meet the formal definition of green or gold. This will thus tend to be a few percentage points higher than the numbers used for, for example, UCL’s REF open access compliance statistics.

Data is shown up to 2021; this avoids any complications with green open access papers which are still under an embargo period – a common restriction imposed by publishers when pursuing this route – in the most recent year.

1. UCL’s change in percentage of open access publications over time

(InCites all-OA count)

The first metric is the share of total papers recorded as open access.  This has grown steadily over time over the last decade, from under 50% in 2011 to almost 90% in 2021, with only a slight plateau around 2017-19 interrupting progress.

2. Citation impact of UCL papers over time

(InCites all-OA count, Category Normalised Citation Impact)

The second metric is the citation impact for UCL papers.  These are significantly higher than average: the most recent figure is above 2 (which means that UCL papers receive over twice as many citations as the world average; the UK university average is ~1.45) and continue a general trend of growing over time, with some occasional variation. Higher variation in recent years is to some degree expected, as it takes time for citations to accrue and stabilise.

3. Relative citation impact of UCL’s closed and Open Access papers over time

(InCites all-OA count, Category Normalised Citation Impact)

The third metric is the relative citation rates compared between open access and non-open access (“closed”) papers. Open access papers have a higher overall citation rate than closed papers: the average open access paper from 2017-21 has received around twice as many citations as the average closed paper.

4. World leading universities by number of Open Access publications

(InCites all-OA metric)

Compared to other universities, UCL produces the second-highest absolute number of open access papers in the world, climbing above 15,000 in 2021, and has consistently been the second largest publisher of open access papers since circa 2015.

The only university to publish more OA papers is Harvard. Harvard typically publishes about twice as many papers as UCL annually, but for OA papers this gap is reduced to about 1.5 times more papers than UCL.

5. World leading universities by percentage of Open Access publications

(5-year rolling average; minimum 8000 publications in 2021; InCites %all-OA metric)

UCL’s percentage of open access papers is consistently among the world’s highest.  The most recent data from InCites shows UCL as having the world’s highest level of OA papers (82.9%) among institutions with more than 8,000 papers published in 2021, having steadily risen through the global ranks in previous years.

Conclusion

The key findings of this research are very good news for UCL, indicating a strong commitment by authors and by the university to making work available openly.  Furthermore, whilst high levels of open access necessarily lead to benefits relating to REF and funder compliance, the analysis also indicates that making research outputs open access leads, on average, to a greater number citations, providing further justification for this support, as being crucial to communicating and sharing research outcomes as part of the UCL 2034 strategy.

Get involved!

alt=""The UCL Office for Open Science and Scholarship invites you to contribute to the open science and scholarship movement. Stay connected for updates, events, and opportunities. Follow us on X, formerly Twitter, LinkedIn, and join our mailing list to be part of the conversation!

 

Shaping the Future: OOSS Initiatives and Goals for 2024

By Rafael, on 26 January 2024

Following our blog post last week, where we reflected on the achievements of 2023, this week we wanted to look forward and share our plans for 2024. From championing open research practices to fostering inclusivity, transparency, and collaboration, the UCL Office for Open Science Scholarship (OOSS) teams are gearing up for an exciting new year!

OOSS 2024 Initiatives:Image by KamranAydinov on Freepik. Top view of hand holding a pen on spiral notebook with new year writing and drawings decoration accessories on black background.

Annual Conference: Anticipate the return of the UCL Open Science Conference after Easter, promising an exciting and engaging program. Stay tuned for details as we continue to drive conversations on open science, sustainability, and inclusivity in research practices.

Authorship Overview: Building on the success of the 2023 conference, OOSS is preparing to release an overview of best practices in authorship. The focus on equity in authorship during a dedicated workshop last year has further contributed to the development of a UCL statement on Authorship, showcasing our commitment to fostering fair and inclusive authorship practices.

UCL Open Research Train the Trainer Course: OOSS proudly supports the UCL Open Research Train the Trainer course, a key part of the UKRN Open Research Programme. This course aims to empower participants with the knowledge and skills needed to champion open research practices, contributing to the broader mission of advancing openness in academia and beyond.

Open Science Website Overhaul: Over the summer, the office has ambitious plans for an overhaul of the Open Science website. This initiative aims to enhance user experience and engagement. As part of this revamp, case studies from the community will be gathered, providing an opportunity for voices within UCL to contribute to the narrative of open science. Watch out this space!

Research Data Team:

Poster of International Love Data Week 2024 (February 12-16, 2024)Love Data Week 2024: In February 2024, the Research Data Team will celebrate Love Data Week, a dedicated time to showcase impactful data from the academic community underscoring the team’s commitment to recognising the value of open data practices and promoting its significance in research. Join us!

Training and Review Services: The Research Data Team is dedicated to enhancing accessibility in 2024. One of the key initiatives involves the redesign of online training for Writing Data Management Plan providing a more user-friendly experience for researchers to access resources and guidance efficiently. Additionally, throughout the year, the team will offer training sessions and review services on data management plans. This ongoing support ensures that researchers align with funders’ criteria and best practices, contributing to the overall improvement of data management within the UCL community.

Best Practice Guidance for Metadata Records: An important focus next year will be the development of best practice guidance for creating high-quality metadata records. These records play an essential role in enhancing the findability and reusability of research data. To facilitate this, the team is creating user-friendly video guides, making it easier for researchers to grasp the essentials of metadata creation and promoting adherence to best practices.

Citizen Science Team:

Community Building: The Citizen Science Team at OOSS is committed to community building in 2024. The focus is on expanding the UCL Citizen Science community, fostering connections among researchers and communities passionate about citizen science initiatives. A landmark initiative will be the hosting of the inaugural UCL Citizen Science Community event. This event provides a platform for community members to come together, share experiences, and explore collaborative opportunities. Stay tuned and participate!

Principles for UCL Citizen Science Projects: The Citizen Science Team recognizes the importance of establishing clear principles for UCL Citizen Science projects. In 2024, efforts are underway to articulate these principles, providing a framework that ensures the ethical, inclusive, and impactful execution of citizen science initiatives. These principles aim to guide project leaders, participants, and collaborators in creating meaningful contributions to both research and public engagement.

Establishing a Citizen Science Support Service: To further support the UCL community’s engagement with citizen science, the team is working on establishing a dedicated Citizen Science Support Service. This service will serve as a central hub for resources, guidance, and assistance related to citizen science projects. The team is also compiling an enhanced list of support resources for citizen science. This will include a diverse range of materials, from guidelines and toolkits to success stories and best practice examples. By consolidating these resources, the team intends to provide a valuable repository to guide researchers and community members involved in citizen science projects. While this is underway, we encourage you to explore the available resources and training materials on our website!

Open Access:

Support and Funding for Long-Form Outputs: In 2024, the Open Access Team is committed to extending support and funding to authors working on long-form outputs, such as monographs, book chapters, and edited collections. Recognizing the importance of diverse and open scholarly contributions, this initiative aims to facilitate open access publishing for a broader range of academic works. UCL authors are encouraged to apply for funding to cover the associated publishing costs, promoting accessibility and dissemination of scholarly knowledge.

Improving Profiles and RPS for Enhanced Accessibility: The Open Access Team is dedicated to enhancing the Profiles platform and Research Publications Service (RPS) in 2024. Plans include the development of department and group pages within these platforms, fostering a more comprehensive and accessible presentation of academic profiles, publications, and collaborative efforts. These enhancements contribute to the overall visibility of UCL research outputs and strengthen the university’s commitment to showcasing the diverse impactful work of its academic community.

Safeguarding Authors’ Rights for Open Availability: An active investigation into a UCL Rights Retention policy is underway, reflecting the Open Access Team’s commitment to safeguarding authors’ rights. This policy aims to support authors by allowing them to retain the rights to make their outputs openly available. By exploring and implementing this policy, the team seeks to align UCL with practices that prioritise authors’ control over the accessibility of their scholarly works. This initiative is an important step towards ensuring that the academic community retains agency in sharing their contributions openly.

Research Bibliometrics Team:

Journal Citation Report Visualisation New LibGuide for Metrics Tools: In 2024, the Research Bibliometrics Team is focused on supporting researchers with the knowledge and tools needed to navigate the landscape of research impact metrics. A new LibGuides is underway, focusing on key metrics tools, including InCites, Altmetric, and Overton. This comprehensive resource will serve as a guide for researchers, offering in-depth information on harnessing these tools to assess the impact and visibility of their scholarly work.

Training for Overton: As part of the team’s commitment to enhancing research impact assessment, special attention will be given to Overton. The Research Bibliometrics Team plans to roll out further training sessions specifically designed to harness the potential of the platform as a discovery and research metrics tool. This will provide researchers with skills and understanding enabling them to use Overton effectively for evaluating the broader impact of their research in the academic landscape.

Get Involved! alt=""

As we embark on 2024, the UCL Office for Open Science and Scholarship invites you to be a part of the open science and scholarship movement. Whether you are a researcher, student, or simply curious about the future of academia, your engagement can contribute to a more transparent, collaborative, and innovative research landscape. Stay connected for updates, events, and opportunities. Follow us on X, formerly Twitter, and join our mailing list to be a part of the open science and scholarship conversation at UCL!

 

OOSS Annual Recap 2023

By Rafael, on 17 January 2024

As we step into a new year, let’s reflect on the collective achievements and milestones of the UCL Office for Open Science & Scholarship (OOSS) and our associated teams in 2023. This year witnessed the growth and integration of OOSS within the institutional culture of UCL, offering pivotal support to academic staff, researchers, and students. From the successful return to in-person events with our annual conference to pioneering initiatives and awards, let’s revisit the highlights that shaped our work last year!

Annual Conference & Open Access Celebrations

Poster for the Open Science Conference: 'The Case for Social Justice'

In April 2023, we successfully organized our annual conference, marking our first return to in-person events. Themed Open Science and the Case for Social Justice, the conference fostered important discussions on sustainability in research practices, addressing critical issues such as gender, language, authorship, and geographical disparities. Recordings of these insightful discussions are available. Notably, a workshop during the conference addressed equity in authorship, contributing to a forthcoming UCL statement on Authorship. Additionally, October saw the celebration of our Open Access week, themed Community over Commercialisation. This included a series of blog posts, activities, and discussions, emphasizing equitable access to a wide range of works.

Honouring Excellence: Inaugural Open Science and Scholarship Awards:Group photo of the 12 Winners of the inaugural Open Science and Scholarship Awards standing together in front of a white wall.

Another highlight was the inaugural Open Science and Scholarship Awards at UCL in collaboration with the UK Reproducibility Network. These awards aimed to recognize and celebrate the efforts of UCL students and staff who champion open science practices. Learn more about the winners and their innovative work!

Open Access: Profiles & Transformative Agreements

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The Open Access Team played a pivotal role in ensuring the open availability of UCL academics’ research outputs throughout 2023. A major achievement was the successful introduction of the new Profiles platform, replacing the outdated IRIS. Profiles acts as UCL’s public search and discovery tool, significantly improving the visibility of academic profiles, publication lists, research and teaching activities, and collaborations with UCL colleagues. The team also facilitated the Gold open access publication of 3,383 papers in 2023, contributing to the thriving UCL Discovery with over 44 million downloads. The repository now boasts over 166,000 open access items, including 23,400 theses, with over 18,500 uploads in the preceding twelve months.

Aligned with the UKRI and Wellcome open access policies, the Open Access Team provided robust support for UCL researchers. This included facilitating compliance through publishing in fully open access journals, making use of transformative agreements with publishers encompassing over 12,000 journals, and using funders’ language to secure the right to make accepted manuscripts freely accessible upon publication under the CC BY license.

Research Data: Enhancing Support to Researchers

The Research Data team introduced a more user-friendly version of the UCL Research Data Repository, incorporating enhanced features and a comprehensive user manual. The repository saw a significant influx of 193 new items, including data sets, media items, and software applications. Engaging with researchers, the team provided substantial assistance, reviewing 32 data management plans and conducting successful training sessions for 61 researchers. Additionally, the team expanded and refined frequently asked questions (FAQs) for better user support.

Citizen Science: New website and initiatives

Word cloud image featuring key terms related to citizen science

The Citizen Science Team expanded its reach and impact in 2023 through new Citizen Science website pages and an enhanced list of citizen science projects at UCL, fostering a greater understanding of the breadth of such initiatives across the university. The creation of a unifying definition of citizen science at UCL, accompanied by an inclusive word cloud, provided clarity on the diverse subject areas and disciplines covered by citizen science projects.

The development of the UCL Citizen Science Certificate, in collaboration with the UCL Citizen Science Academy, marked a significant milestone and underscored our commitment to fostering collaborative initiatives. A new Citizen Science community on MS Teams was launched, providing a dedicated space for discussions and updates. Get involved!

Bibliometrics: Measuring Research Impact

The Bibliometrics Team, in collaboration with the Open Access Team, played a crucial role in implementing the new Profiles system. Their research confirmed the citation advantage associated with open access practices. After a detailed analysis of UCL publications over recent years, the study demonstrated that open access materials are utilised and cited more extensively, and confirmed the place of the institution as leading organisation in making material available in open access.

Additionally, the team introduced new courses, including an introduction to altmetrics and the Overton database, aiming to assess the broader impact of published research in the wider world and cover policy documents and official documents. Another training provided an overview of understanding and demonstrating research impact, further supporting UCL’s researchers. The Bibliometrics Team’s dedication to understanding and demonstrating research impact through various courses and collaborations reinforced UCL’s position as a leader in research output accessibility.

Stay connected and Informed

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The combined efforts of OOSS teams in 2023 exemplify UCL’s commitment to open and accessible research practices across diverse disciplines. As we move forward, the OOSS remains dedicated to fostering an inclusive culture of open science and scholarship, shaping a transformative academic environment at UCL.

Join us in 2024 for updates and insights, and follow us on X, formerly Twitter, to find out more about open science and scholarship at UCL!

UCL Advent Calendar of Research Support!

By Kirsty, on 1 December 2023

This year we are pleased to be able to share with you our Advent Calendar of Research Support! We will be posting every day over on our Twitter/X account but for those of you that aren’t using Twitter/X we have posted it below, and you can visit it online in your own time. We will also be updating this post throughout the month with accessible version of the content.

Day 1A Christmas tree with white lights at night in front of columns lit with colours of the rainbow.

The Office for Open Science and Scholarship is your one stop shop for advice and support for all things openness. Find out more on our website: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/ucl-office-open-science-and-scholarship #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez “alperucho” on UCL imagestore. A Christmas tree with white lights at night in front of columns lit with colours of the rainbow.

Day 2. A girl with dark hair and wire rimmed glasses wearing a yellow jumper sits at a laptop. In the background can be seen colourful book stacks.

Profiles is UCL’s new public search and discovery tool showcasing the UCL community. Use it to find UCL academics, their activities, collaborations, industry partnerships, publications and more. Profiles replaces the previous IRIS system: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/ucl-profiles #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Mat Wright on UCL imagestore. A girl with dark hair and wire rimmed glasses wearing a yellow jumper sits at a laptop. In the background can be seen colourful book stacks.

Day 3Six people in office attire facing a bright yellow wall covered in postit notes

If you need a more controlled way of sharing your research data, check out the UK Data Service and its granular controls for accessing data. https://ukdataservice.ac.uk/learning-hub/research-data-management/data-protection/access-control/ #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Alejandro Walter Salinas Lopez on UCL imagestore. Six people in office attire facing a bright yellow wall covered in postit notes

Day 4 A mixed group of people around a table working at laptops.

Our final UCL Profiles training session of the year will be held on 7 December at 12pm. Come along to find out how to update your profile and manage your professional and teaching activities in RPS. https://library-calendars.ucl.ac.uk/calendar/libraryskillsUCL?t=g&q=profiles&cid=6984&cal=6984&inc=0

If you can’t make the session, have a look at our Getting started with Profiles page: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/ucl-profiles #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. A mixed group of people around a table working at laptops.

Day 5A group of three women in warm clothing toasting with cups of coffee at night.

Are you interested in citizen science or participatory research? Ever wondered whether such an approach might work for your project? Whether you are new to citizen science or if you’ve run projects including participants before, come and join our informal UCL Citizen Science community to exchange ideas, ask for advice or share your stories! #ResearchSupportAdvent https://teams.microsoft.com/l/team/19%3aEU3Ia83bPWRqzrGpqQ1KkqlQ0AC5f4Ip8Y-zclJ-PHc1%40thread.tacv2/conversations?groupId=54f252f7-db72-40df-8faf-20e618d9a977&tenantId=1faf88fe-a998-4c5b-93c9-210a11d9a5c2

Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez “alperucho” on UCL imagestore. A group of three women in warm clothing toasting with cups of coffee at night.

Day 6A plate of mince pies.

Ever hit a paywall when trying to access scholarly publications? Get the popcorn ready, and be prepared to have your eyes opened by watching this documentary ‘Paywall: the Business of Scholarship’ at https://paywallthemovie.com/ #OpenAccess #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez “alperucho” on UCL imagestore. A plate of mince pies.

Day 7Image from ThinkCheckSubmit. Traffic lights containing the words Think, Check, Submit

Have you ever received an unsolicited email from a publisher inviting you to publish your research in their journal? Think, Check, before you submit. https://thinkchecksubmit.org/ #ThinkCheckSubmit #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image from ThinkCheckSubmit. Traffic lights containing the words Think, Check, Submit.

Day 8• Image by UCL Media Services on UCL imagestore. A close up of a bright purple bauble on a tree with some blue lights

If you’re sharing your data using the UCL Research Data Repository, reserve your DOI when you create the item. Then when you submit a paper for publication you can include it in the data access statement and readers will be able to find your data more easily once the data is published. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/research-data-management/ucl-research-data-repository #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by UCL Media Services on UCL imagestore. A close up of a bright purple bauble on a tree with some blue lights.

Day 9• Image by KamranAydinov on Freepik. Blue headphones surrounded by christmas decorations, stockings, candles, tree lights and pine cones

Are festive songs, recipes and party activities protected by copyright? How does this relate to your research? Answers in our latest copyright blog post: https://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/copyright/#ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by KamranAydinov on Freepik. Blue headphones surrounded by christmas decorations, stockings, candles, tree lights and pine cones.

Day 10• Image by UCL Press. Image is a red band on a white background. On the red band, white writing reads, ‘An introduction to Waste management and circular economy. Read and download free from uclpress.co.uk/waste'

UCL Press has launched the first #openaccess textbook in its new programme today. Take a look here: https://www.uclpress.co.uk/products/215121. Interested in publishing an #openaccess textbook with us? Find out more: https://www.uclpress.co.uk/pages/textbooks

Image by UCL Press. Image is a red band on a white background. On the red band, white writing reads, ‘An introduction to Waste management and circular economy. Read and download free from uclpress.co.uk/waste.

Day 11• Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. A close up of a Christmas tree covered in yellow lights and small silver leaves. In the background can be seen a grey building, some leafless trees and a dark grey statue of a man.

If you’ve encountered a paywall when trying to read research online, Unpaywall (https://unpaywall.org/) and the Open Access Button (https://openaccessbutton.org/) are two free browser extensions which search the internet for copies that you can access. #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. A close up of a Christmas tree covered in yellow lights and small silver leaves. In the background can be seen a grey building, some leafless trees and a dark grey statue of a man.

Day 12Image by John Moloney on UCL imagestore. A group of people in business attire socialising with drinks. Picture is taken from a distance and slightly above.

Do you have a namesake in the world of research? To ensure that other researchers and publishers are not confusing you with someone else, sign up for an ORCID ID at https://orcid.org/ ORCID brings all your scholarly output together in one place. Read more here: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/open-access/orcid-ucl-researchers #ResearcherIDs #ORCID #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by John Moloney on UCL imagestore. A group of people in business attire socialising with drinks. Picture is taken from a distance and slightly above.

Day 13Image by Irrum Ali on UCL imagestore. A white table covered in books and pamphlets of various sizes.

Grey literature is produced and published by non-commercial private or public entities, including pressure groups, charities and organisations. Researchers often use grey literature in their reviews to bring in other ‘voices’ into their research. We have listed some useful sources on our guide: https://library-guides.ucl.ac.uk/planning-search/grey-literature #literaturereview #greyliterature #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Irrum Ali on UCL imagestore. A white table covered in books and pamphlets of various sizes.

Day 14Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. Two large and several small icicles against a wintery sky.

Are you working with personal data and need more advice on the difference between anonymisation and pseudonymisation? Check out the data protection team’s guide or get in touch with them for more advice. #ResearchSupportAdvent https://www.ucl.ac.uk/data-protection/guidance-staff-students-and-researchers/practical-data-protection-guidance-notices/anonymisation-and

Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. Two large and several small icicles against a wintery sky.

Day 15Image by Mat Wright on UCL imagestore. A student with long blonde hair studies in the foreground. Behind her are rows of wooden desks and book stacks in arches sit further back.

Historical Inquiry is an important part of the research process. A place to begin this is by understanding the etymology of words. Raymond Williams began this by collating keywords of the most used terms. However, the meanings of words change over time, depending on context. The University of Pittsburgh has continued this project: https://keywords.pitt.edu/, and we have their publication in the Library. #HistoricalInquiry #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Mat Wright on UCL imagestore. A student with long blonde hair studies in the foreground. Behind her are rows of wooden desks and book stacks in arches sit further back.

Day 16Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. UCL front quad at twilight. In front of the portico is a Christmas tree decorated with yellow lights. To the right of the image is a leafless tree decorated with purple and pink lights which can be seen reflecting off the white building beyond.

Did you know the Research Data Management team can review your Data Management Plan and provide feedback, including to make sure you adhere to funder guidance on data management? Get in touch to send us a plan or find out more. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/research-data-management #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Mary Hinkley on UCL imagestore. UCL front quad at twilight. In front of the portico is a Christmas tree decorated with yellow lights. To the right of the image is a leafless tree decorated with purple and pink lights which can be seen reflecting off the white building beyond.

Day 17Image by James Tye on UCL imagestore. Image shows a view through a gap in books to a woman with light brown hair holding the books open and appearing to be searching the shelf.

From 2024, UKRI funded long-form outputs must be open access within 12 months of publication under CC BY or another Creative Commons licence. UCL’s Open Access Team has info. including funding & exceptions, and offers support: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/open-access/research-funders/new-wellcome-and-ukri-policies/ukri #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by James Tye on UCL imagestore. Image shows a view through a gap in books to a woman with light brown hair holding the books open and appearing to be searching the shelf.

Day 18Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez "alperucho" on UCL imagestore. Image shows a Christmas garland over and arch with people walking through, slightly out of focus. The garland is threaded with yellow lights and the words Happy Holiday Season are written in pink lights.

To coincide with the new UKRI open access policy for monographs, UCL Library Services has new funding to support all UCL REF-eligible staff who would like to make their monographs, book chapters and edited collections Gold open access. Find out about this funding and how to contact us: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/open-science-research-support/open-access/open-access-funding-and-agreements/open-access-funding #ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez “alperucho” on UCL imagestore. Image shows a Christmas garland over and arch with people walking through, slightly out of focus. The garland is threaded with yellow lights and the words Happy Holiday Season are written in pink lights.

Day 19Image by Tony Slade from UCL imagestore. A top-down photograph of four students working individually at wooden desks. To the right of the image are wooden bookcases full of colourful books.

Interested in adding grey literature into your research? Have a look at Overton – a database of 10m+ official and policy documents http://libproxy.ucl.ac.uk/login?url=https://app.overton.io/dashboard.php#ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Tony Slade from UCL imagestore. A top-down photograph of four students working individually at wooden desks. To the right of the image are wooden bookcases full of colourful books.

Day 20A screenshot from the UCL Copyright Essentials module. Includes information on the topics covered, some text from the module and an image of a group of stormtroopers marching in the street. Includes image by Michael Neel via Wikimedia Commons.

Have time in your hands this holiday? Complete our short, fun, Jedi-friendly copyright online tutorial and be copyright-savvy before the new year begins! Access at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/forms/articulate/copyright-essentials/#/ #ResearchSupportAdvent

A screenshot from the UCL Copyright Essentials module. Includes information on the topics covered, some text from the module and an image of a group of stormtroopers marching in the street. Includes image by Michael Neel via Wikimedia Commons.

Day 21Image by Tony Slade on UCL imagestore. A close-up perspective shot of a bookcase. Black books with gold writing are in the foreground and red, orange and blue volumes are further back.

Beat the cold with #openaccess reading! UCL Press have more than 300 open access books and 15 journals for you to read and download- for free! Available from: uclpress.co.uk

Image by Tony Slade on UCL imagestore. A close-up perspective shot of a bookcase. Black books with gold writing are in the foreground and red, orange and blue volumes are further back.

Day 22Image by KamranAydinov on Freepik. Top view of hand holding a pen on spiral notebook with new year writing and drawings decoration accessories on black background.

Have you made your New Year resolutions yet? Start by developing your copyright knowledge. Register for one of our 2024 workshops to learn how copyright supports your research and learning. #ResearchSupportAdvent https://library-calendars.ucl.ac.uk/calendar/libraryskillsUCL/?cid=-1&t=g&d=0000-00-00&cal=-1&ct=32648&inc=0

Image by KamranAydinov on Freepik. Top view of hand holding a pen on spiral notebook with new year writing and drawings decoration accessories on black background.

Day 23Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez "alperucho" on UCL imagestore. An arm and hand in profile holds up a mobile phone with the camera open. The phone shows the UCL portico and Christmas tree. The background is out of focus but appears to show Christmas lights.

Curious to see who’s talking about your research? You can see a dashboard for all your RPS publications in the Altmetric tool – search by “verified author”. https://www.altmetric.com/explorer/#ResearchSupportAdvent

Image by Alejandro Salinas Lopez “alperucho” on UCL imagestore. An arm and hand in profile holds up a mobile phone with the camera open. The phone shows the UCL portico and Christmas tree. The background is out of focus but appears to show Christmas lights.

Day 24

The final day of our #ResearchSupportAdvent is upon us and we want to use it to say thank you to everyone that has supported us, come to our events, training or shared with us. Also our colleagues and friends from other institutions. All of us here in the UCL Office for Open Science & Scholarship and beyond across all of the teams represented wish you a great break and look forward to 2024!

Open Access Week: A year in review

By Kirsty, on 25 October 2023

It has become somewhat of a tradition now for there to be a post during Open Access Week that reviews the previous year. While the middle of October may seem like a strange time to take stock, it is after all the anniversary of the Launch of the Office for Open Science & Scholarship and we like to stop and celebrate another year.

This year we celebrated another successful conference and our first back in person for us! We also had another first with a workshop taking place simultaneously online and in person on the topic of equity in authorship. This work has been fed into a UCL statement on Authorship that will be released in the coming months.

We also released a brand new page bringing together all of the training and support information across all the Open Science affiliated teams to make it easier to navigate and get your questions answered.

In the past year all of the teams that form part of the office have worked hard on developing new services and making improvements to existing ones.

The Open Access team have been working hard updating RPS and the new Profiles tool to replace IRIS. They also support both Gold and Green Open Access Activity across the university.

Over 18,500 items have been uploaded to UCL Discovery in the last 12 months, bringing the total to over 166,000! Of these, there are over 23,000 theses to be explored. They have also made 3,383 papers Gold OA, 2,700 of which were using our transformative agreements with publishers.

The Research Data Management team have been working hard behind the scenes doing an overhaul of their support materials, testing new materials for training and supporting the ever-growing Research Data Repository.

In the past 12 months we have had over 1000 new datasets from 226 users. Quite notably, we have had over 200,000 downloads which just goes to show the value of sharing your data as well as your other research outputs!

The Citizen Science support service has moved on in leaps and bounds since this time last year, creating content, liaising with colleagues across the university, collaborating to launch the UCL Citizen Science Academy and this week we were able to launch the brand new Citizen Science online community.

Hopefully that gives you a taste of what we have been up to and the numbers of the last year, scroll back through the blog for more information and to get an idea of the detail of what we have been up to. It’s been a great year and here’s to the next!

Happy Open Access Week!

Open Access Week activities

By Kirsty, on 13 October 2023

Open Access Week is almost upon us!

Keep your eyes open for a series of blog posts on Creative Commons, citizen science, the recent activities of UCL Press and an exciting review of a year in open access.

This year’s theme is Community over Commercialisation. Creative Commons licences sit at the heart of this discussion. To this end, we invite you to a drop-in session on Tuesday the 24th of October to address questions around creating and using Creative Commons materials. The session is on Teams and you can join at any time. Bring along your questions or just join to discuss how CC supports equitable access to a wide range of works, from scholarly publications to open and FAIR data to images and music.

We have already announced our wonderful winners of the Open Science and Scholarship awards. UCL colleagues can also join us on Wednesday to celebrate and network with the winners, tickets are still available!

We will be posting and tweeting regularly throughout the week about the services and support available to researchers and I hope that we can get some good discussions going!

See you there!

Altmetrics at UCL: one year on!

By Harry, on 29 August 2023

Guest post by Andrew Gray, Bibliometrics Support Officer

Altmetrics are the concept of “alternative metrics” – measuring the impact of research beyond scholarly literature. This covers a wide range of different things, ranging from social media discussions (e.g. Twitter or Facebook), mainstream news reporting, and grey literature such as policy documents. Understanding how research is being reported and discussed in these can help give us a broader understanding of the impact and reach of papers that we don’t see from looking at traditional scholarly citations.

UCL has a subscription to Altmetric, the primary commercial database for this information. It covers a broad range of materials. We also subscribe to a second source, which focuses purely on policy documents – Overton and can be a helpful complement.

There are several ways in which looking at altmetrics can give us information that wouldn’t otherwise be available. For example, we can see how different audiences outwith academia are responding to research, and we can look at what they’re saying to get an idea of the kind of response.

Some of the altmetric indicators (particularly Mendeley bookmarks) seem to have a close correlation with subsequent citations and can give us an early view of what citation figures may be like six months to a year in future.

Lastly, tracing policy citations through Altmetric or Overton can effectively demonstrate the wider research impact, for example, for use in a funding report or application.

Looking at activity

So what data can we see? Altmetric provides an aggregated “score” for each paper, indicating an overall activity level. While this isn’t a very exact measure, it lets us identify papers with high and low activity levels.

Looking over the past few years at UCL, the most obvious thing is that discussion of research is dominated by COVID-19. It accounts for thirteen out of the fifteen most heavily discussed UCL papers overall – by comparison, were we to look at pure citation counts, COVID papers account for none of UCL’s top fifteen overall, and only perhaps four out of the top fifteen from the past few years. This very striking difference highlights how altmetrics and citations can show different things.

The colour swatches on each show how the activity is broken down. For example, in this paper, we can see that most of the activity is from X/Twitter (light blue), with smaller contributions from Facebook (dark blue), news media (red) and blogs (yellow). Clicking through will let us drill down to see all the activity details.

Diving into data – day by day

One thing that surprised us with Altmetric is the sheer volume of data that they make available. Reports of 100,000+ papers can be downloaded, including DOIs and PubMed IDs, making it easy to link data to other sources such as RPS and InCites. This lets us do some analyses that wouldn’t be possible in other sources – but do tell us something unexpected.

For example, it gives us the exact date papers were published. Looking at around 50,000 UCL papers published in 2020-22, we find that the response differs depending on the day of the week – papers on Wednesday and Thursday are above-average, and papers on Tuesdays are below average.

In part, it is because some of the most prestigious publications have fixed publication days – most Nature papers are released on Wednesdays, for example. These journals have a large share of high-impact papers and an excellent publicising system.

The weekends are interesting. Not many papers come out on the weekends, but the ones that do, have a noticeable citation/bookmarking penalty compared to weekday ones, suggesting they are less impactful on average. And they make much less of a stir in the news media – a weekend paper is less than half as likely to get news coverage as a weekday one.

But social media has a sharp difference – Sunday papers get significantly more Twitter activity than Saturday ones. An intriguing mystery!

Using Altmetric at UCL

Altmetric and Overton are both available to any user at UCL. You simply need to log in to Altmetric using a UCL email, which will set up your user account. For Overton, you can browse the data without an individual account or set up an account to save searches and other functionalities.

We have integrated Altmetric with RPS, the central UCL publications database. Every two to four weeks, every paper in RPS since 2013 is exported, tagged with the UCL author(s) and associated departments, and uploaded into Altmetric.

This means that we can use the Altmetric dashboard to dig down into UCL outputs in some detail – we can ask it questions like “news stories in the last month referring to a piece of research published by someone in Chemistry”. It is also possible to save and circulate reports from the dashboard – this report shows the top 20 papers from Chemistry in 2023 by Altmetric Activity.

Similar functionality is not yet available for Overton, but if you would like to search for papers from a specific department, we would recommend generating a list of DOIs from InCites (or even from Altmetric itself!) and importing those as an advanced search.

We will be running introductory training sessions for both Altmetric and Overton in the coming term – please contact bibliometrics@ucl.ac.uk if you would be interested in attending these or booking a 1:1 meeting to go through the services.

Welcome to the new Training and Support Resources for Research site!

By Harry, on 11 July 2023

Since the UCL’s Office for Open Science and Scholarship founding, the team has been gathering resources to support researchers, academic staff, students, and everyone interested in learning and developing their skills and understandings about Open Science and the transition towards more democratic models to produce and share knowledge in equitable and inclusive ways.

The fast growth of Open practices and their translation into renewed local, regional, and global policies made necessary systematic resource realignments. During the last months, we have committed to re-organise those assets based on the myriad of users and their backgrounds far beyond the academic field, creating our new user-friendly website, ‘Training and Support Resources for Research’. Organised in the following up-to-date categories:

  • Advanced Research Computing: practical, hands-on training for various IT skills related to research, including high-performance computing, research software engineering and programming.
  • Citizen Science: our brand-new site with information about what UCL is doing in Citizen Science, innovative projects, and UCL’s Citizen Science Academy. Keep an eye on the Open@UCL Blog, where we will soon expand and go deep into the world of Citizen Science!
  • UCL Copyright advice: information and assistance by the UCL’s Library Services Copyright Team offers a wide range of copyright issues to UCL students and staff.
  • Creating Accessible Content: a compendium of simple steps to make your content more accessible and provide a more inclusive experience for all.
  • Doctoral Students Resources: a place for rigorous academic and non-academic creative researchers. Explore the resources and expand your skills to support your research, professional development and employability.
  • Information Governance: this site is for all members of UCL who manage highly confidential research information, including principal and chief investigators, staff, students, senior managers, and even those who just supervise people who directly handle confidential information and support staff who do not have direct access to data.
  • Open Access: designed to help UCL researchers understand how to make publications open access, meet open access requirements, use UCL’s Research Publications Service (RPS) and take advantage of open access funding.
  • Research Data Management and Planning: from the initial planning of a project through to archiving and sharing, the research data management team advises the UCL community on managing research outputs – across the research data lifecycle – in line with UCL’s expectations and external funding agencies’ requirements.
  • Research Funding Management: learn more about post-award processes through the online training course of the Fundamentals of Research Funding Management.
  • Research Integrity: summary of training opportunities currently available for staff and students. This list is not exhaustive and is intended to provide guidance as to options available. It will also be updated so do re-visit this page.
  • Research Transparency: research transparency covers how we ensure our research is responsible, reproducible, open and evidence-based.

If you scroll down the website, you will also find UCL’s Organisational Development training, Short Courses and some of UCL’s Communities and Forums that you can join to share your research, get advice and learn something new. We also collated an overview of the Research Support Teams!

Stay tuned to our news, events and training opportunities by subscribing to our mailing list,  following us on Twitter @UCLopenscience, or getting in touch with the Office for Open Science, and one of our teammates will answer as soon as we can!

Office for Open Science & Scholarship 2022 review

By Harry, on 18 January 2023

A new exciting year is starting, and what better way to give the initial kick than celebrating the achievements and milestones of the multiple teams linked to the UCL Office for Open Science & Scholarship (OOSS). We are proud to see how the OOSS kept growing and consolidating itself inside UCL’s institutional culture, supporting academic staff, researchers and students.

One of last year’s highlights was undoubtedly the UCL Open Science Conference, reuniting people from all over the world in sessions discussing Citizen Science, Open data and code, Open and the Global South and more. You can still watch the recordings of day one and day two on our blog! And get ready to participate in the 2023 version in late April. You will hear about it soon on our pages and social media. We are working to make the event hybrid to facilitate participation across territories, do not miss your spot!

After various months of revisions and collaborative work, we published new Open Science Resources for 2022-2023. The first is the video ‘Open Science and Scholarship as part of UCL Research Culture’ and ‘Open Science – a practical guide for PhD students’.

Our office connects to several other teams inside UCL that make an exquisite blend of services, skills and expertise, and we want to celebrate their achievements and news.

The UCL Open Access team has grown their range of transformative publisher agreements and upgraded Research Publications Services (RPS). Users will notice a refreshed look and feel, differences to the Homepage layout, and a new menu structure and navigation. Check the step-by-step guide if you missed it!

UCL Press has proven the importance of open-access scholarly publishers, reaching six million downloads last May (and close to seven million now!), reaching 246 countries and territories, and publishing 272 titles since its launch in 2015.

The Bibliometrics team now is able to support Altmetric, which will be useful for anyone interested in public engagement or research impact, as well as individual researchers looking at the response to their work online. Altmetrics are “alternative metrics” – measuring the impact of research beyond scholarly literature. Helping to get a wider sense of the impact of papers that might otherwise be missed were we to focus on traditional academic citations.

Our Research and Data Management team upgraded their webpages, reviewed dozens of data management plans, and created brand new online Data Management Plan Templates with DMP online. Their services and the Bibliometrics team were both classified as excellent regarding the user’s experience of our online support service. We are proud of such a hard-working and supportive team!

During the second half of 2022, the OOSS gained two additional members: a Citizen Science Coordinator and a Support Officer. Both new team members are currently working with the Office Coordinator on ambitious projects that will see the light later this year, aiming to diversify the support and resources of our virtual office for wider audiences.

Undoubtedly, the diversity of professionals, backgrounds and interests made our small office inside Library, Culture, Collections & Open Science (LCCOS) a prosperous place to develop services, ideas and projects for wonderful audiences inside and outside our university.

Last year’s achievements were only possible due to the support of the university to embrace an open culture, thanks to the collaborative work between the teams, and always supporting each other and the office users. We will keep working together to democratise knowledge and keep UCL one of the Open Science & Scholarship leaders worldwide.