OA/Open Science resolutions.

Taking my cue from Jonathan Eisen, herewith the things I plan to do this year to the benefit of Open Science:
1. Get my act together in the lab and publish some quality papers in OA journals, complete with Open Data (even if I have to cobble something together to provide the data).
One of the most important things researchers can do is to increase awareness of the issues by making OA-centric choices with their own work. Jonathan’s entry brings to mind the difference between what he — that’s Professor Eisen, with a CV as long’s your arm! — can do for OA, and what I can do. I think it could also be useful to have a lowly postdoc publicly choosing OA journals, refusing to deal with Elsevier, and so on. I’ve heard a number of colleagues say that such choices are the sort of thing they will put off “until after tenure” — and I suppose Jonathan has heard “well, it’s OK for you, you have a lab and tenure and so on, the risk is lower for you”. Thing is, I don’t think these choices add up to a risk. There are clear advantages to having my work available under Open Access conditions, and I think similar advantages will accrue as a result of my willingness to provide Open Data (and, when I can get colleagues to agree, Open Notebook access to my work). I think I’ve said this before, but I view it as a sort of experiment. My hypothesis is that Open Science will be good for my career, and there’s only one way to test it! (I know, no control, yadda yadda. Call it “money where my mouth is” if you prefer.)
The rest of these are swiped from Jonathan’s list, and from Peter Suber’s “what you can do” list:
2. Find an OA, OAI-PMH-compliant repository for my existing postprints and future pre/postprints. In the case of published papers, I think I can get ’em into ePrintsUQ (as discussed here). In the case of future papers, I’ve already made tentative contact with the relevant people where I work, and I’m going to try to get an IR up and running. Futher possibilities to discuss: everything on Peter Suber’s list for administrators.
3. Review papers for OA journals (or do anything else they ask me to, pretty much), but for non-OA journals, decline and explain. (One exception: the boss sometimes asks me to pre-review a paper he’s agreed to review, so as to speed up the process for him. I’ll do that no matter which journal it is.)
4. Find a way to work at least a quick push for OA/Open Science into every presentation.
5. At least ask the administrators of any conference or meeting I attend about providing Open Access to proceedings.
6. Discuss OA/Open Science with colleagues (note to self: avoid hectoring!).
7. Discuss OA/Open Science with everyone; use blog for same. As Jonathan notes, public support is going to be necessary to get mandates and such working.
8. Sign the BOAI (you can do this as an individual, whereas Bethesda is closed and Berlin only open to organizations).

5 thoughts on “OA/Open Science resolutions.

  1. Bill,
    It is a good idea to come up with tangible objectives like this and to share with everybody. Another small thing that requires very little effort is to record your talks using screen capture software like Camtasia or CamStudio then upload on an open system like GoogleVideo or your server. It is also fairly quick to convert these to podcasts or vodcasts and host them from iTunes. This has come in very handy when people request more info about my work. It is also cheap to have a company transcribe these and dump the transcript on a blog.

  2. J-C: thanks for the info. I am not teaching and only have one presentation coming up (in-house so there’s no way I will be allowed to upload it) — but it’s an excellent idea and I will keep it in mind.
    Dorothea: I sincerely hope to be able to take you up on that by the end of the year. I know (from conversation with his reasearch team) that the director of research here at Shriner’s is aware and in favour of OA, and I am hoping to get five minutes of his time in a week or so. Any suggestions on an “elevator pitch” for an IR? (I’ll be blogging my thoughts on that soon, and asking the Web in general for help, too.)

  3. Well, I signed the BOAI. Not sure how I missed this before. I like the OA to proceedings of meetings idea, but I think that sometimes can get touchy since it may keep people from presenting their latest stuff. But I will add this to my list of things to try and do.
    I will also try to not hector.

  4. I just signed, too. I sorta assumed all three of the BBB declarations were closed, but then in looking over Peter’s list of “what you can do” I discovered that one could still sign on to BOAI. I like the way they make it clear what you are doing by signing: signaling a personal commitment to OA.
    In re: hectoring, that really was a personal note: I tried giving a little presentation to the lab managers here at work, about BioRoot, and, well, I screwed up. I think I probably put more people off the idea than I turned on to it. I gotta tone down the enthusiasm; people come to these things at their own pace.

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