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Clarivate Analytics chosen to provide citation data for REF 2021

Research England has announced that Clarivate Analytics' Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) has been chosen to provide the citation metrics for the next UK research assessment exercise - REF2021.

The data supplied by ISI includes the number of times a publication has been cited in other academic publications - referred to as citation counts. According to the latest Research England press release this has been requested by 11 of the 34 expert panels, and will be used to feed into the peer-review process during the research assessment phase of the REF. ISI will use the citation data collected by Web of Science, and then match it to the publication records supplied by institutions. Regarding concerns about the accuracy of the matching process, RE have offered reassurance:
[I]nstitutions submitting during REF 2021 will be able to view the citation counts for items they plan to submit to the REF in the relevant units of assessment and confirm that a correct match has been ob…

Feedback requested on implementation of Plan S

Following the recent Wellcome announcement of its revised Open Access Policy, today new guidelines on the implementation of Plan S have been announced. The guidelines are published in full with details of technical requirements at https://www.coalition-s.org/feedback/ and feedback is welcomed from all stakeholders, including the public.


cOAlition S is committed to fulfil the specific target set out in Plan S – immediate Open Access to all scholarly publications from research funded by coalition members from 2020 onward  Three routes to achieve OA will be compliant:
Publish in fully Open Access journals listed in the DOAJ or on Open Access platforms Deposit in Open Access repositories listed in OpenDOARPublish in subscription journals with 'transformative' agreements in place or that permit accepted manuscripts to be deposited immediately with a Creative Commons Attribution licence, such as Royal Society titles The guidelines cover questions of cost, licensing and timing, wit…

Wellcome Trust announces new Open Access policy

Following an 8 month review the Wellcome Trust announced its latest Open access policy on 5 November.

Some key changes Deposit into PubMed Central (PMC) and Europe PMC Articles must be made freely available by the official final online publication date instead of within 6 months of the final publication date Article processing charges (APCs) OA publication in subscription journals (hybrid) will no longer be compliant unless associated with Jisc Collections transformative OA agreementsJournals chosen must be indexed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)Only journals and platforms that follow criteria that cOAlition S may set out in future for OA journals and platforms will be compliant Pre-prints Authors are encouraged to post pre-peer review pre-prints under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence. This is mandated during public health crises Research assessment Wellcome-funded research organisations must publicly commit to a statement of intrinsic merit of the researc…

Breaking free - out of embargo

The route to Open Access can be surprisingly long and winding. In this last post for Open Access Week 2018 we look at some examples of publications that are now freely available to all from our repository - in most cases a year or more after first publication.

Why wait to make these articles open access, you may ask? Because... "copyright"
The latest article to become open access after a 12 month embargo is:

Understanding a hydroformylation catalyst that produces branched aldehydes from alkyl alkenes, Dingwall, Paul; Fuentes, José A.; Crawford, Luke; Slawin, Alexandra Martha Zoya; Buehl, Michael; Clarke, Matthew L. In: Journal of the American Chemical Society. http://hdl.handle.net/10023/16318

This paper adds to the ever increasing number of freely available publications from our research community - this week we celebrated the milestone of 15,000 items in St Andrews Research Repository!

"This paper is a detailed study aiming to understand a catalytic reaction that gave…

Thesis Thursday 2018 : a wider notion of research

As part of #ThesisThursday in Open Access Week we are pleased to host a fascinating guest post from our colleagues in the Library E-theses team:

Why do we make research theses available in the St Andrews Research Repository?
It’s a question that we are asked from time to time by both research students and academic researchers in our own institution.  Our answer is invariably that the institution should make its research available online to as wide an audience as possible.   Researchers expect to discover material online and they expect to read it online.  We have a policy to collect electronic research theses and make them available open access where possible, (unless subject to embargo), to promote and showcase University research, and to make it as accessible as possible to a global audience.  This is the core of our reasoning as to why we resource and manage the service.

But are ‘researchers’, in the purest sense of the word, our only consumers?  Or does the audience for our thesis…

Kin win to become item 15,000 in the St Andrews Research Repository

To mark the 15,000th item deposited in the St Andrews Research Repository the Open Access Support team is pleased to publish a guest post by its co-author, Andy Gardner:

Dyble, M, Gardner, A, Vinicius, L & Migliano, A 2018, 'Inclusive fitness for in-laws' Biology Letters, vol. 14, no. 10. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2018.0515


Cooperation abounds in nature and in human society, and this has long been a puzzle for evolutionary biologists. At first glance, the traditional Darwinian dictum of the “survival of the fittest” appears to imply that selfishness will reign supreme. But altruism can be favoured by natural selection, if it occurs between closely-related kin. According to the theory of "kin selection", although a gene encoding altruistic behaviour leads to its carrier suffering a cost, it is also providing a benefit to other individuals who carry copies of the very same gene, and this increases its overall transmission to future generations.

However, human notions of ki…

IRUS-UK: statistics and benchmarking for UK repositories

For over 4 years now St Andrews has participated in IRUS-UK – a JISC funded service providing accurate and usable repository download statistics. At the time of writing there are 146 repositories included in the service, which equates to 94% of all eligible UK repositories. This means that as well as being able to track our downloads, we can compare downloads across other institutions too, and this is something that has been enhanced further recently with the addition of a new report, which we’ll look at here. First though we want to look again at an open access book that we've written about previously, including in yesterday’s Open Access Week post.
[D]emand for knowledge can be stifled by access barriers, and when those barriers are taken away, the knowledge is opened up and it can finally satisfy demand.Module theory: an approach to linear algebra. Blyth, Thomas Scott.  Professor Blyth’s book has been archived in St Andrews Research Repository since February 2018, and in this…

Open Access books: Tony Crook's new book is published OA

This week is Open Access week, and the theme is set to look at the foundational work that is needed to underpin a transition to a world where research results are free and open by default. Recent moves by the open access publisher Knowledge Unlatched have shone a spot light on the need for better cooperation in achieving an open access default for books. Where KU has gone in the direction of commercial proprietary infrastructure, others such as Open Book Publishers have called for more open and transparent cooperation that isn't tied to proprietary commercially driven software. Open Book Publisher's reaction to Knowledge Unlatched is here.

"Academics need to know that there are benefits too, and that the expense of publishing OA is worth it in the long run"
While the debate about the nature of the infrastructure rumbles on, presently we must keep our minds focussed on the individual examples of open access books. Indeed the appetite for open access books is unlikely…

It's Open Access Week 2018!

It's that time of year again when around the world people are celebrating all things Open Access. The theme of this year's International Open Access Week, is “designing equitable foundations for open knowledge.”


In the first blog post we will look at work going on in the Humanities to raise the profile of Open Access books. This is something that has been gaining traction in recent years, but the foundations are yet to settle. We will also take a look at the download statistics from the repository, and look more closely at the new reports that are available from IRUS-UK - a UK wide repository statistics service. We have a post planned for #ThesisThursday too, this is a day in OA Week reserved for highlighting open access theses in recognition of the release of Professor Stephen Hawking's thesis last year which temporarily broke the University of Cambridge's repository due to the volume of traffic. In the post we will hear from our colleagues in the Library catalog…

Behind the scenes with the OA team: Kirsty

In the last in this series of posts introducing the Open Access Team, we have Kirsty. Kirsty is the newest member of the team, joining the team in 2015. Amongst many other things, Kirsty assists with creating Pure records for new staff, and with monitoring newly created publication records. Kirsty also has the 'Full text not validated' filter to capture Pure records with files attached (described in the first post), and her filter consists of  the 2 Geography Schools - Geography and Sustainable Development and Earth and Environmental Sciences.
1. What do you say when people ask, “So, what do you do for a living?” My answer changes every time I’m asked and it depends on who is asking.  Mostly, I say I help monitor and update the University’s research information system, and help researchers’ make their work accessible to the public.  If I’m feeling extra bold I’ll say I’m a librarian within the Digital Research division of the library – but that usually sparks more questions.

2…

Behind the scenes with the OA team: Kyle

All this week we've been peering behind the curtain to get a better look at the Open Access team in the Library. You can see all the previous posts here. Today we'll hear from Kyle. Kyle's Pure filters are mainly trained on Humanities and Social Science schools, as well as Psychology and Neuroscience and Chemistry. If you want to know more about our Pure filters and the work of the team in general take a look at the first post in this series.
 1.    What do you say when people ask, “So, what do you do for a living?” I used to say simply that I’m a Librarian, because that’s something people are familiar with. But 9 times out of 10 this is followed by the person dreamily saying something like “Oh that must be nice working with all those books”. Unfortunately in the Open Access team I don’t often get to refer to physical books or journals (I do on occasion though which is nice). So these days when someone asks me this, I usually say I'm a digital research librarian, or so…

Behind the scenes with the OA team: Michael

In this second post in a series aimed at introducing the Open Access team here at St Andrews, we have Michael. The first post in this series mentioned that the open access team members each have filters set up in the Research Information System (Pure), and we explained that each member of the team has specific schools and departments in their filters. Michael's filters include mainly sciences - so Physics and Astronomy, Computer Science, Medicine, Biology are all under Michael's umbrella, plus many more of course.

1. What do you say when people ask, “So, what do you do for a living?” Depends who’s asking – sometimes something vague like ‘research support’; other times I’ll specifically say ‘making the University’s research publications Open Access’
2. What’s the first thing you did when you came in to work today? Put the kettle on!  Seriously, I prioritised email enquiries for myself and mark things for other members of the team, as appropriate.
3. What do you spend most of your…

Behind the scenes with the OA team: Jackie

In this first 'Meet the team' post we'll hear from Jackie. Jackie is the Repository & Open Access Services Manager, and oversees the publications side of Pure, the University's Research Repository, and our journal hosting platform OJS.
1.    What do you say when people ask, “So, what do you do for a living?” Within the University or to colleagues working in scholarly communications I will say “I manage Open Access Services as part of the Digital Research division in the Library”. ‘Repository Manager’ is also part of my job title, but I almost never say that out loud. To people not familiar with universities or research publishing I’ll say something like ‘providing services to help our researchers make their publications more visible’. I generally don’t say I’m a Librarian, although due to a limited list of options that’s what I put as ‘mother’s occupation’ on my daughter’s marriage certificate 🙂

2.    What’s the first thing you did when you came in to work today? O…

Behind the scenes with the OA team

In this post we’ll look behind the scenes at the University’s Open Access team. And we will follow this up with posts introducing the individual members of the team. Most of the work we do behind the scenes is invisible, so called ‘auto-magical’ if you will. In some ways this is a good sign, to quote Futurama:
“When you do things right, people won't be sure you've done anything at all”. Futurama, 'Godfellas', 2002. But looking at it another way, it could also be unhelpful, as researchers might not know who to contact if they have questions or concerns. So, in this post we are going to expose some of our more auto-magical tasks.

Firstly this is where we are located - in the Old Union Diner on Butts Wynd:


So what do we do? Well, the short answer is rather a lot! But, broadly the team is responsible for:
Open access advocacy, and related advice on copyright and licensing Funder and institutional open access policy complianceManaging central open access fundsReporting to re…

cOAlition S: declaration for full and immediate OA announced

On 4th September 2018 Science Europe announced a new open access commitment named cOAlition S, or Plan S, signed by 11 major research funders in the EU, including UKRI (formerly RCUK). Plan S states that after 1st January 2020 all research outputs funded by the signatory funders will have to be fully and immediately open access.

The declaration makes many strong statements about the need for change in the scholarly publishing system:
[N]o science should be locked behind paywalls! (Science Europe,  Science Without Publication Paywalls)
"Monetising the access to new and existing research results is profoundly at odds with the ethos of science. There is no longer any justification for this state of affairs to prevail and the subscription- based model of scientific publishing, including its so-called ‘hybrid’ variants, should therefore be terminated." (Science Europe,  Science Without Publication Paywalls)

The declaration goes further than most current OA policies, stating 10 &…

14,000 items in the St Andrews Research Repository

It has been a hectic summer for the St Andrews Research Repository. At the beginning of May we added our 12,000th item to the repository (Pagano , P , Mackay , D H & Yeates , A R 2018 , ' A new technique for observationally derived boundary conditions for space weather’.) Since then, in addition to the regular addition of research publications and current theses, a project to add digitised copies of older theses has been well under away – and to such an extent that the repository passed 13,000 items before anyone noticed! So just a little over two months after we celebrated our last landmark an additional two thousand items have been added to reach 14,000 items in the St Andrews Research Repository.

The goal of the aforementioned project has been to digitise all of the Library’s postgraduate theses from before 2007, (the year the University made a mandatory requirement for an electronic copy for certain postgraduate research degrees.) The first phase of the digitisation is…

St Andrews Research Repository reaches 1 million downloads!

The University Library has been celebrating this week as the University’s research repository reaches over 1 million downloads!


This enviable download figure is derived from IRUS-UK – a statistics service for UK repositories that provides accurate, consistent, and comparable usage data. We’ve only been tracking IRUS downloads since January 2014 too, so the actual download figure for the repository is likely to be a great deal higher!

The download figures clearly show the appetite for St Andrews research
For those that don’t already know, the research repository is linked to the University’s research information system Pure, and is the platform used to disseminate University research publications. Publications are uploaded to Pure primarily by academics, research support staff, and the Open Access team in the Library. Once they are checked by the OA team (to ensure they comply with copyright, publisher rules and so on) they are transferred to the repository for public release. A great…

Repository storms past 12000 items with Open Access article about space weather

The Library effort to make research papers Open Access continues and this week we passed the 12000 item milestone.  Thanks to our colleague Kirsty Knowles the 12000th item deposited is a paper about modelling space weather. A new technique for observationally derived boundary conditions for space weather is published in Journal of Space Weather and Space Climate and co-authored by researchers in Applied Mathematics.  It is fully Open Access, published with a Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY) that maximises re-use and redistribution with users only needing to cite the original work.




As reported last October, deposits into the St Andrews Research Repository are a community effort and a substantial proportion are sourced by the Library, as well as staff and researchers in Schools.  This has enabled the university to report 88% RCUK compliance to satisy funder mandates and, ultimately, to increase the visibility of research and timely access for researchers, funders, students a…

Knowledge Exchange on the costs of Open Access

The cost of Open Access isn't a late-breaking field. In 2014 a cost of £9.2m for UK research organisations to achieve RCUK Open Access compliance was quoted [1]. This is in addition to the millions paid to publishers for article processing charges.  Because the market in scholarly publications is constantly adapting and costs for Open Access and library journal subscriptions are inexorably rising, it's incumbent on institutions to monitor not just the cost of the product, but the cost of managing it.  Open Access and open data have been identified as strategic for Librarians and university senior management [2].


The Knowledge Exchange partnership works at an international level to develop the infrastructure of open scholarship and promote common standards.  It regularly publishes reports on its activities. Its consensus report on monitoring Open Access publications and cost data published April last year makes recommendations based on the work and feedback from stakeholders at…

University of St Andrews Open Journals System now updated

This week the University Library completed a long overdue update of our online journal hosting platform, run on the popular Open Journals System software. We are now running on version 3 of the software, which brings with it a number of significant improvements.


The new version incorporates the now ubiquitous bootstrap framework, meaning it is now 'responsive' by design. So the content should look good no matter what type of device you're using, whether a mobile, tablet, or desktop PC. The front end design has also received a new lick of paint, with a more modern style throughout. The backend of the system has been similarly overhauled with a simpler interface and easier to manage editorial workflows.

Currently we have 12 journals on the system, 9 of which are still active and publishing new volumes regularly. The inactive journals are still retained in the system as an archive. One of the 9 active journals, Journal of Terrorism Research, is actually hosted remotely by Ubi…

St Andrews women academics share their career stories

With a Foreword by Dame Anne Pringle and an Afterword by Professor Sally Mapstone, Academic Women Here! On being a female academic at the University of St Andrews was launched Monday of this week.



"Gr8 women" The project aimed to provide an opportunity for participating senior academics to share their variety of career pathways and the different constraints and pressures they experienced that contributed to their current career success. In sharing, it's hoped that colleagues, staff and students at St Andrews and readers beyond will understand that there is no right way to begin or advance an academic career. Contributors also hope to inspire future female academics to start and progress their careers and to address the continuing problem of low numbers of women represented at senior level in higher education.

In the words of the editors:
Our booklet reveals the diversity of career paths taken by these women, and also the variety of ways in which these women are curre…