Science 2.0 study

Updates on progress and discussions on results of Science 2.0: implications for European policies on research and innovation study

Author Archive

Science 2.0 is not just a passing fad: crowdsourcing the evidence

We’re approaching the final stage of our study. So far, we have  opened up our bibliography on our Mendeley group here; our notes through this very blog; our model for open science; and our draft policy recommendations for EU. And we’ve benefited from your comments and insight.

Now, we need your help to improve the evidence about the importance of Science 2.0, if we want policy-makers to take it seriously.

Therefore, we share the final presentation that we have presented to the European Commission, DG RTD here.

Help us improving it, by gathering more data and evidence, showing that Science 2.0 is important and disruptive, and that it’s happening already. In particular, we ask to share evidence and data on the take-up of Science 2.0: how many scientist are adopting it? With what benefits?

We ask all people interested in Science 2.0 to share the evidence at hand, by adding comments to the presentation. If you prefer, just leave a comment to this post.


Shape with us the future research priorities of the EU – comment on the draft policy recommendations

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


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.

Open Access is not a luxury, it is a must-have for EU

Have a look and comment on  the Commissioner Neelie Kroes speech opening the PEER2012 conference.

The EC is working on including data sharing as a requirement for EU-funded project enlarging and on Recommendations for Member States on improving access, management and preservation of scientific results.

Openness in the Research Cycle

We’re looking for a model that enables us to describe the changes in the research process brought by Science.2.0. First, we have proposed division between open science, citizen science and data-intensive science.

Now, we have focused on the research cycle trying to capture different applications on different stages of research process. The inner cycle on the diagram below represents stages of the research process from the conceptualisation to the publication of a peer-reviewed article.

In the science.2.0 model the openness, principles of sharing and collaboration are (can be) present on every stage of the research process whereas in the traditional model, only result that is shared is the peer-reviewed article (often behind a paywall).

At the conceptualisation stage open discussions around ideas (blogs, fora) and knowledge sharing is important (open annotation, open bibliographies). Subsequently we have the stage of gathering data where data and research praxis can be shared in real-time (open data, open lab notebooks) and gathered in collaboration with citizens. In order to deposit data to enable further analysis we need eInfrastructures. Also in many instances the data can be analysed with the help of volunteers (citizen science) and open collaboration (collaborative analysis) . The analysis of data can be facilitated by sharing the open software. The outcome of analysis can be published as an article or a book chapter (which can be updated in an instance – liquid publications) but also as a statement accompanied with metadata that is linked with other statements (nanopublications). The article can be published in an open access journal or submitted to an institutional repository allowing wider accessibility. Data can be published  and linked to the article. Finally, publications are subject of the review by the academic community to establish the importance of the findings and filter the increasing number of scientific literature according to their relevance and significance for the field. Publications can be opened to post-peer reviews when the community openly discusses the importance of the discovery. Also other reputation systems, distinct from peer-review can be used to measure scientific excellence and author/publication impact (e.g. altmetrics).

What’s missing in our diagram?  What should be added/changed in order to better capture the Science2.0 phenomenon?

Our reference list is on Mendeley

Our reference list is on Mendeley

We have created a group on Mendeley to share the references we’re collecting during the desk research. See, join and add papers to our group

Growth of collaboration in science. Are social sciences catching up with natural science?

There are several studies showing that the article co-authorship (which is one of the indicators of collaboration) is much more popular in natural sciences than in humanities. Nevertheless, social science sees the growth of the co-authorship but mainly in quantitative studies (Moody, 2004).

Work of Larivière et al. (2006), which comes from an analysis of Canadian scientific articles  from 1980 to 2002 period, shows that almost all articles in the NSE are jointly published, compared with two thirds in the social sciences and about 10% in the humanities.

Finally, the study of Franceschet and Costantini (2010) on an Italian sample of articles suggests that collaboration is correlated positively with number of citations. However, hyper-authored articles (e.g. in physics) receive significantly less citation which may be due – according to the authors – to the fact that they are much faster becoming obsolete when compared with theoretical articles.

Why is the collaboration in humanities so uncommon? Can we explain it by the significance of the article which is much higher in NSE than in the humanities where single-authored books prevail?
Does it have an impact on transfer of ideas, theoretical consolidation?
And finally, should we induce collaboration in science?

If Harvard cannot afford its journals subscriptions – who can?

Harvard Library recently issued a memorandum on academic journals pricing. The letter states that:

Some journals cost as much as $40,000 per year, others in the tens of thousands. Prices for online content from two providers have increased by about 145% over the past six years, which far exceeds not only the consumer price index, but also the higher education and the library price indices.

The Faculty Advisory Council who is responsible for the memorandum underlines that even if publishing is an expensive business and the number of article submission grows significantly every year, such an increase in subscription prices and the 35% profit margin or even more of some publishers cannot be justified just by that.

The Council opens up a discussion on the change of its subscription policy. Among others it suggests Harvard scholars to submit articles in the open-access journals in order to move prestige to open access. It also urges scholars who sit on an editorial board to push for open-access policies.

See full letter here.

Do you think it is a milestone in Open Science? Will it have a major impact on academic publishers? Is it now possible to move prestige to open-access?

On a quest for Science 2.0 examples

At this point of our study we’re looking for cases that would show us the diffusion of the Science 2.0 and help to delimitate it. We are building a case repository on diigo using following tags: citizen science, big data, open science; applied and basic; science discipline. Later on we will choose amongst them several examples for closer study. What are for you the most meaningful examples of Science 2.0?

Science 2.0 study – kick-off


We’re starting a study on Science 2.0 implications for European policies on research and innovation.

We would like to join the discussion on the changes in science and update the community on the progress of our study.

For the next three months we plan to do a literature review, map interesting cases on Diigo, carry out case studies, interviews and finally come up with policy recommendation for the European Commission which we would like to validate with the research community.

See our About page for more information.

The Study Team

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