Wednesday June 5, 2013

Crisis in Scholarly Publishing

By Nichole Rustad

You might not have heard, but there is a crisis in scholarly publishing. Reacting to multiple consumer demands, scholarly publishers have attempted to both lower the costs of publishing research and provide greater access to research by moving to open access business models. This new(ish) business model has shifted the financial responsibility from consumers (or libraries) to producers (professors/researchers). These eager-for-publication professors are now required to often pay large sums of money to get their research in OA publications.

Most of these new open access publishers provide wonderful scholarly services, the remaining few aren’t so wonderful. Now that producers of scholarly content pay to have their research made public, open access (OA) scholarly publishers have a strong incentive to publish as much as possible, often at the sacrifice of the peer review process. To make matters worse, some dubious individuals are starting their own OA publications promising to publish peer-reviewed articles, but are nothing more than a scam.

If you have research or a conference proposal, be careful who you send it to. Do your research first before submitting for publication. Be sure to check your list of your hopeful OA publishers with a librarian to make sure they are reputable. Or you can look to see if they are on a list of dubious OA publishers by visiting the link below. And of course, be sure to check back here at the UD libraries’ blog for more details about OA publishing news.

Craig Boman, Applications Support Specialist, Roesch Library


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