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Rethinking scholarly publishing: How new models can facilitate transparency, equity, efficiency and the impact of science

Allen, Liz; Marincola, Elizabeth

The world of scholarly publishing is undergoing massive change, the result of a combination of technological, political, cultural and socio-economic forces and drivers. There is evidence that many of the processes and practices used by scholarly publishers are today outdated and outmoded, a significant cause of research waste – and damaging to the careers of scientists and science more broadly. And those damaging effects are known to be amplified for researchers working in the Global South and in resource-poor environments. However, in the digital age, where space restrictions largely disappear and there is demand for more rapid and open access to research findings, new modes of sharing and publishing original research are emerging. New models, based upon the principles of limited pre-selection, openness, transparency, diversity and inclusion, are gaining traction for their ability to remove unnecessary barriers to publish for researchers from across the world and to accelerate access and potential use of knowledge. Moreover, more transparent and inclusive models of publishing help to remove the bias associated by a focus on selection for publication based upon subjective notions of ‘excellence’, novelty and ‘impact’, which has resulted in much important, useful work, being unpublished. Precisely because of a relative lack of legacy, researchers in the Global South are today positioned to ‘leap frog’ over established systems and engage with and co-develop new modes of scholarly communication – that we argue are better for science and better for the scientists. 

Published by African Minds.
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