Thursday, July 28, 2016

Let’s face it. The biggest blockage we have to widespread Open Access is not researcher apathy, a lack of interoperable systems, or an unwillingness of publishers to engage (although these do each play some part) – it is the problem that the only thing that counts in academia is publication in a high impact journal.

This situation is causing multiple problems, from huge numbers of authors on papers, researchers cherry picking results and retrospectively applying hypotheses, to the reproducibility crisis and a surge in retractions.

This blog was intended to be an exploration of some solutions prefaced by a short overview of the issues. Rather depressingly, there was so much material the blog has had to be split up, with several parts describing the problem(s) before getting to the solutions.

Prepare yourself, this will be a bumpy ride. This first instalment looks at the reward system. The second instalment will consider authorship and credit. The third will look at reproducibility, retractions and retrospective hypotheses. And the final blog will discuss some options for solving at least part of the problem.