Science 2.0 provides new opportunities and challenges to the European Research Area. It’s not a matter of embracing or rejecting the shift, but rather to understand and design appropriate policy measures that will grasp the opportunities and overcome the challenges.
Approaching to the final phase of our study we have drafted an initial version of policy recommendations for the European Commission that we would like to discuss with researchers, science2.0 evangelists, publishers, representatives of funding bodies, librarians and other interested parties. Therefore we have published the recommendations as a commentable document open for your suggestions, comments and add-ons.
Our recommendations are clustered around four challenges:
- RESEARCHERS REPUTATION AND EVALUATION – the supremacy of impact factor
Scientists are still following the old ‘publish or perish’ rule, frequently passing over the opportunities to be engaged in activities that do not ultimately result in a peer-review article. The career process is not inducive to sharing data and code, and to collaborate at early stage of the scientific process.
- EU RESEARCH FUNDING – rigid funding instruments
Current research funding is mainly roadmap-based, and not conducive to open and serendipitous research activities which are confined to limited areas such as ERC and Fet-Open. Evaluation system narrowly focusses on articles and patents as research outcomes.
- SKILLS – lack of data and scientific literacy
There’s a need more and better data-literate scientists across all disciplines, as well as greater awareness and scientific literacy of citizens.
- STANDARDS AND INFRASTRUCTURES – immature infrastructure and lack of standards
Without common standards for data management, the open access and open data policies cannot be scaled up. There’s a need for a stronger physical and institutional infrastructure for the growing amount of scientific data and publications to create a favourable environment to the development of science 2.0
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Note: These policy recommendations are based on desk research (see the references in our Mendeley group), interviews with stakeholders and case studies (the results of our research will be published together with the final version of the policy recommendations). They are also build upon existing recommendations such as: the LiquidPub project final recommendations and Surfboard for Riding the Wave report by Knowledge Exchange (Graaf & Waaijers, 2011).
This study takes a broader view to the full research cycle, beyond open access to scientific publications, which is a well analysed theme with clear policy recommendations already existing and embraced by policy-makers. These recommendations are therefore to be considered as additional to existing Open Access debate.