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Open Access Week highlights

Catherine LSharp25 October 2019

It’s nearly time to say farewell to Open Access Week 2019. The Open Access Team would like to thank all the academic and library staff who’ve come to our training sessions and retweeted us. In case you haven’t been following us this week, we’ve been celebrating UCL academics’ open access achievements, and encouraging everyone to learn about Plan S in preparation for new UKRI and REF open access policies in 2020. We’ll be updating our webpages, tweeting and offering training sessions once the new policies are announced, but get in touch with us if you’d like to know more now.

If you haven’t already downloaded the OA Button and Unpaywall browser extensions or added your ORCID ID to RPS, we’d like to suggest that you try this today. It’ll only take a few minutes, and will help you find open access outputs, and make your own work open access.

Here’s a quick reminder of this week’s highlights, with many thanks to our communications and publicity colleagues for all their help!

20 million downloads from UCL Discovery

Patrycja ABarczynska13 May 2019

UCL Publications Board and the Open Access Team are delighted to announce that UCL’s institutional repository, UCL Discovery, reached the milestone of 20 million downloads on 5 April 2019. UCL Discovery is UCL’s open access repository, showcasing and providing access to UCL research outputs from all UCL disciplines. UCL authors currently deposit around 1,700 outputs in the repository every month. 

Our 20 millionth download was of a dataset: Aldridge, R; (2019) Causes of death among homeless people: a population-based cross-sectional study of linked hospitalisation and mortality data in England. [Dataset]. Wellcome Open: London, UK, which supports an article on causes of death among homeless people in Wellcome Open Research, a platform that allows rapid publication and transparent peer-review. This demonstrates the combined value of open research data, open peer review and open access to research publications.

The article’s corresponding author, Dr Robert Aldridge, deposited the dataset in UCL Discovery at the end of February 2019. Dr Aldridge is a Wellcome Clinical Research Career Development Fellow at UCL’s Institute of Health Informatics. He uses data and digital technologies to investigate and improve the health of the public, with a particular focus on the burden of disease marginalised communities. The article and accompanying dataset, analysing the causes of death of homeless people across England and concluding that almost a third of them were due to treatable illnesses, rather than hypothermia or alcohol and drug overdoses, typifies this line of research. See UCL News for more information about the article.

UCL is committed to supporting researchers with making research data open access, and will officially be launching its new Research Data Repository on Wednesday, 5th June. The service will enable UCL authors to publish their research data, make it discoverable and citable, meet funder requirements and preserve their data long-term. The launch event will take place from 5-7pm in room W3.01 IOE, 20 Bedford Way. David Price, UCL Vice-Provost (Research), will introduce this event and Paul Ayris, Pro-Vice-Provost (UCL Library Services), will present an update on how UCL is supporting Open Science, with a demonstration of the repository from Figshare as well as a user case study.  Wine, nibbles and soft drinks will be provided. Please register for a ticket here.

UCL Open Science Day 2019

Patrycja ABarczynska9 May 2019

Last year in June UCL held the first Open Science Day, attended by over sixty people. This one day workshop provided an opportunity to ask for practical advice and to discuss different aspects of Open Science in a greater detail. Following its success, booking is now open for the second Open Science Day that takes place on Thursday 23rd May, at UCL Institute of Education (Logan Hall).

This one day workshop will explore the facets of Open Science and how these are, or could be, pursued by UCL researchers. In the morning speakers will discuss different aspects of and perspectives on Open Science. Afternoon workshops will offer practical advice on Software Carpentry, Citizen Science, GDPR and Open Education. There will also be opportunity to discuss the steps UCL should take to support Open Science.

Morning sessions include:

  • Open Pharma – Prof. Matt Todd, UCL School of Pharmacy
  • Research Evaluation and DORA – Prof. Steven Curry, Imperial College
  • Reproducible Research Oxford – Dr. Laura Fortunato, University of Oxford
  • Digital Science – Speaker TBC

The afternoon workshops will cover:

  • Scholarly Communication: megajournals and measuring impact – The recently-launched UCL Press megajournal is an an example of how new models of publishing can be used to support open science. This workshop will outline the work done by the megajournal and some of the issues around measuring the impact of open publications, with contributions from members of the editorial board.
  • Software Carpentry. Taster session – Software Carpentry is a project dedicated to teaching researchers basic computing skills such as like program design, version control, testing, and task automation. This is a short taster session to introduce the program and give an idea of what is available.
  • Citizen Science discussion – Citizen Science is a fundamental element of many open science programs, and is part of a broader move to link research with wider society. Universities are having to develop new ways to support this work, with new processes and services.
  • GDPR and opening data – One of the biggest issues surrounding making research data openly available is the protection of personal information. This workshop, delivered by the UK Data Archive, will discuss how the goal of openness can be balanced with the need for protection, particularly in the light of new and more stringent regulations.
  • On the Trail of Open Education Policy Co-creation – This workshop looks at developing policies which can be used to support open education and open science, considering different issues and contexts, and the various interested parties.

And close with a discussion on building open science communities, with UCL researchers Isabelle Van Der Vegt, Dr. Sandy Schumann, Dr. Ben Thomas, and Dr. Vaughan Bell.

This free event is open to all and is delivered by UCL Library Services with support from UCL Organisational Development.

You can register via Eventbrite here.

For any questions please contact lib-researchsupport@ucl.ac.uk

UCL response to Plan S consultation

Catherine LSharp21 January 2019

UCL has submitted an institutional response to the Plan S consultation. This response was shaped by the UCL Plan S Town Hall meeting that was held on 8 January (and also takes into account subsequent feedback received from UCL academics). The response, and the supporting document (notes from the Town Hall meeting) are available below.

UCL response
UCL Plan S Town Hall meeting notes

UCL Plan S Town Hall meeting

Catherine LSharp10 January 2019

Plan S requires that, from 2020, scientific publications that result from research funded by public grants must be published in compliant Open Access journals or platforms.

Plan S is an initiative for open access publishing that was launched in September 2018. The plan is supported by cOAlition S, an international consortium of research funders. This group currently comprises 13 national research funding organisations (including UK Research and Innovation/UK Research Councils) and three charitable foundations (including the Wellcome Trust and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) from 13 countries. Together with the European Commission and the ERC, they have agreed to implement the 10 principles of Plan S in a coordinated way.

UCL held a Town Hall meeting on 8 January to discuss the principles of Plan S, as well as what its implementation will mean for researchers. Around 115 staff from across UCL attended. The Open Access Team would like to thank everyone who shared their views and questions.

Presentations from the meeting are now available:

cOAlition S is running a consultation on the Plan until 8 February 2019. You can contribute to the consultation directly. To arrange a meeting in your department to discuss the implications of Plan S, contact the Open Access Team at open-access@ucl.ac.uk.

Update: UCL’s response to the Plan S consultation is available in a separate post.

How to Share your FAIR Data – 25th October 2018

Catherine LSharp26 October 2018

This week UCL hosted a series of events to coincide with International Open Access Week (22nd -28th October). The Research Data Management team were on hand to deliver a session on data sharing and the role it currently plays in the Open Science agenda. The session was divided into two parts. The first half introduced researchers to the importance and practical considerations of sharing data in keeping with the FAIR data principles. This was followed by a talk from Dr. Ben Thomas from the Institute of Nuclear Medicine who spoke of his experiences of using the EU-funded Zenodo repository to add a working example of data sharing to the session.

Many thanks to all those that attended and hopefully the session provided some useful information for researchers to further explore the merits of sharing research data.

The slides from the FAIR Data session can also be found on UCL Discovery, UCL’s open access repository and in SlideShare here.

FORCE11 – reflections on afternoon workshops

Patrycja ABarczynska24 August 2018

This summer saw the second FORCE 11 Scholarly Communication Institute (FSCI) held at the University of California, San Diego, which I had an amazing opportunity to attend. Participants of the FORCE 11 summer camp selected three courses from an extensive course list; morning classes ran through the whole week, afternoon ones took place over two days.

Open South: The Open Science Experience in Latin America and the Caribbean

For my first afternoon course, held on Monday and Tuesday, I attended the workshop Open South: The Open Science Experience in Latin America and the Caribbean, which was taught by a group of librarians and researchers: Gimena del Rio Riande, Researcher from Instituto de Investigaciones Bibliográficas y Crítica Textual (IIBICRIT), April M. Hathcock, Scholarly Communication Librarian from New York University, Wouter Schallier, Director of Hernán Santa Cruz Library and Daniel O’Donnell, Professor of English at University of Lethbridge, Canada.

We learnt about the long history of Open Science in Latin America and the Carribean, and discussed national laws in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and Peru that seek to make scientific knowledge produced with public funds openly available. The instructors also highlighted regional projects such as Scielo (collection of open access journals from 14 countries) and redalyc.org (another platform of open access journals, created by Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México). The projects play an important role in making open access the most established communication model in the region.

At the end of the workshop we discussed how to make the Open Access movement more inclusive, how to bridge the gap between the Global North and the Global South. The classes made me reflect on how limited my view of Open Science was, and I realised rich the movement is outside of Europe and North America. One of more interesting initiatives is South-South Programme ran by CLASCO that integrates a network of researchers from the Global South.

Public Humanities as Scholarly Communication – brainstorming

Micah Vandegrift, Open Knowledge Librarian at North Carolina State University and Samantha Wallace, PhD candidate in English at University of Virginia led my Wednesday – Thursday workshop on Public Humanities as Scholarly Communication. Discussion in the class focused on two texts: Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Giving it Away: Sharing and the Future of Scholarly Communication and Sidonie Smith, Manifesto for the Humanities: Transforming Doctoral Education in Good Enough Times.

The class turned into a brainstorming exercise; we are used to discussing Digital Humanities, but Public Humanities go further than Digital Humanities and securing Open Access for publications. There was a long and thought provoking discussion on nature of humanities, and the public, where we reflected on the role of the public in public humanities, and how public is intrinsic to humanities. The discussion in turn led to creating a new framework for public humanities, aligned with citizen science, and that would engage public and communities. Further reflections on the class from one of the instructors, Micah Vandergrift, are available here.

FORCE11 – report from Data in the Scholarly Communications Life Cycle workshop

Patrycja ABarczynska20 August 2018

This summer saw the second FORCE 11 Scholarly Communication Institute (FSCI) held at the University of California, San Diego, which I had an amazing opportunity to attend. Participants of the FORCE 11 summer camp selected three courses from an extensive course list; morning classes ran through the whole week, afternoon ones took place over two days.

Geisel Library – Main Library of UCSD

In the mornings I attended Data in the Scholarly Communications Life Cycle workshops. The class was expertly and entertainingly* run by Natasha Simmons, Program Leader, Skills Policy and Resources at Australian National Data Service (ANDS). The course was structured on the 23 (research data) Things, a self-directed learning programme developed by ANDS, suitable for everyone, regardless of their skills and prior knowledge. The programme is full of resources and fascinating data, have a look yourself here.

We started with an introduction to research data (of course!) and discussed data in the scholarly communications lifecycle – this offers a framework for understanding research processes, and a good (interactive) example is available here. We also talked about data sharing models, and challenges around data sharing.

For Tuesday’s session Natasha invited Stephanie Simms from California Digital Library, who presented an introduction to data management plans and DMPonline tool. We also heard some open data stories, from Australia Telescope National Facility that makes available images of the sky collected at the facility, and from The PetaJakarta Data Sharing Project that gathers data from social media (in this case Twitter) to collect information about flooding in Jakarta.

On Wednesday Reid Otsuji from UC San Diego talked about the Open Science Framework and The Carpentries – a way of acquiring new coding and data skills for researchers and librarians. We also talked about making research data FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable), and used FAIR data assessment tool to look at some openly available data. This provoked a discussion on how easy it is to make research data FAIR (not that easy!) and how institutions could provide the infrastructure and support that are required.

Data in the Scholarly Communications Life Cycle – Open Data Debate

 

The following morning we had guest speakers from UC Berkley, Rachael Samberg and Maria Gould, who presented on licensing research data. This was an extremely interesting talk, and discussed copyright and licencing of data both generated and used by researchers. Later in class we discussed issues around personal and sensitive data. On Friday Gustavo Durand introduced Dataverse – an open source platform developed at Harvard that allows researchers to publish, cite and archive their research data. At the end of the workshop Natasha introduced persistent identifiers and their use in data citation, and we explored different citation styles.

Hands on exercises throughout the course allowed me to experience working with research data, and see issues around data managment from researcher’s perspective. Guest speakers provided me with an opportunity to gain expert insight into many aspects of research data management, and the course structure allowed for numerous discussion and debates. This in turn made me reflect on how nuanced managing research data can be, not only when it comes to copyright and licencing.

*I learnt a lot about Australian wildlife too!

FORCE11 Scholarly Communication Institute (FSCI) 2018

Patrycja ABarczynska16 August 2018

A couple of weeks ago I attended the second FORCE 11 Scholarly Communication Institute (FSCI) held at the University of California, San Diego – a week long training course with workshops led by experts in their fields. FSCI was attended by librarians, researchers, students, post docs, and administrators from all over the world. This presented an excellent opportunity to learn about scholarly communication practices and processes at institutions not only in the United States but also in countries like Australia, Argentina, Canada, Chile, China, Nigeria, and Russia.

Participants of the FORCE 11 summer camp selected three courses from an extensive course list. All classes were very intensive, run in form of workshops and required high level of active participation and beforehand preparation from attendees. Morning classes ran through the whole week, afternoon ones took place over two days; this allowed for in-depth learning experience, and gave an opportunity for stimulating discussions. Evening activities included a slideshow karaoke (which was fun!), do-a-thon (a work-sprint where people with different skills work together on different projects), and a party at Scripps Institution of Oceanograhy that included Scripps Pier tours and famous fish tacos.

FORCE11 Scholarly Communications Institute at the University of California, San Diego

My morning classes, Data in the Scholarly Communications Life Cycle, were expertly and entertainingly led by Natasha Simmons from Australian National Data Service (ANDS). The sessions were based on the 23 (research data) Things programme developed by ANDS, with guest speakers that introduced specific topics related to data managment. The classes provided us with an opportunity to work with data managment plans, create metadata for existing datasets (which proved more difficult than we all thought!), and of course stimulated many discussions.

We discussed licensing, the approaches to signing the commitment and FAIR data assessment tool, and how the research data lifecycle offers a framework for assisting with how to understand research processes. The highlight of the course was the open data debate, in which we argued for and against making your research data openly available. The classes helped me understand the issues and challanges around making research data open, and the nuances involved in the processes and licensing.

Data in the Scholarly Communications Life Cycle

My first afternoon class, held on Monday and Tuesday, was on the Open Science experience in Latin America and the Carribean, and was taught by a group of librarians and researchers from Argetnina, Canada, Chile, and United States. We learnt about the long history of Open Science in Latin America and the Carribean, and discussed national laws in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico and Peru that seek to make scientific knowledge produced with public funds openly available. The instructors also highlighted regional projects such as Scielo and redalyc.org that have played an important role in making open access the most established communication model in the region.

Open South: The Open Science Experience in Latin America and the Caribbean

Micah Vandegrift, Open Knowledge Librarian at North Carolina State University and Samantha Wallace, PhD candidate in English at University of Virginia led my Wednesday – Thursday workshop on Public Humanities as Scholarly Communication. The class turned into a thought provoking discussion on nature of humanities, and the public. It made me reflect on the role of the public in public humanities, and how public is intrinsic to humanities; engaging public and communities should be a natural part of academic investigation.

Public Humanities as Scholarly Communication

Discussions in and outside of classes were inspiring, as is meeting people who are passionate about increasing access to knowledge and learning about the practices that differ from your own. The level of workshops delivery was excellent; observing different styles of teaching and how instructors engage with their audiences made me develop new ideas for training sessions that I provide for UCL academics. I found this intensive and demanding course, converstations with instructors and attendess extremely stimulating. And all of this in sunny California, where you see hummingbirds on your way to the class, on a university campus half an hour from the beach.

La Jolla beach

Further details on the workshops, including links to materials, will be available on the blog next week.

UCL Open Science Day

Patrycja ABarczynska18 July 2018

On 25th of June UCL held the first UCL Open Science Day, a one-day workshop organised by UCL Library Services with support from UCL Organisational Development. Over sixty people attanded the workshop, and the day began with a welcome from Professor David Price, Vice-Provost (Research).

Morning sessions discussed different aspects of and perspectives on Open Science. Dr Paul Ayris, Director of UCL Library Services and Pro-Vice-Provost, started with an analysis of the LERU Roadmap for Open Science from the League of European Research Universities. After this introduction to Open Science Dr Catriona MacCallum, Director of Open Science, Hindawi, followed with a publisher’s perspective on the Open Science movement. Professor James Wilsdon from the University of Sheffield presented an overview of the responsible use of metrics in an Open Science environment.

After the break Simon Hetrrick from Software Sustainability Institute followed with a talk about the role of software in Open Science. Dr Emily Sena from the University of Edinburgh ended the session with a presentation on how Open Science can help in pre-clinical work.

In the afternoon attendees participated in one of the five breakout sessions:

  • How do we make Open the default at UCL?
  • How to make your data Open and FAIR
  • UCL Press: engaging in Open Peer Review
  • Open Education: Introducing OpenEd@UCL
  • Citizen Science in research: UCL ExCites

These workshops gave an opportunity to ask for practical advice and to discuss different aspects of Open Science in a greater detail.

The day ended with a panel discussion – Dr Paul Ayris, Director of UCL Library Services and Pro-Vice-Provost, Professor David Bogle, Pro-Vice-Provost, UCL Doctoral School, and Clare Gryce, Director of Research IT Services, UCL ISD answered questions from the audience about the emerging role of Open Science at UCL. Following the panel, Rebecca Lawrence from F1000 delivered a final presentation on embedding Open Science in university culture.

Presentations from the sessions are now available in UCL Discovery, under the following links: