[open-science] Why not publish data? (Neylon, DC (Cameron))

Heather Morrison heatherm at eln.bc.ca
Thu Mar 19 20:34:23 UTC 2009

On 19-Mar-09, at 12:26 AM, Tim Schweizer wrote:

> I think Cameron is hinting at a major problem (this is my  
> interpretation, so if I'm wrong, blame me, not Cameron).
> The incentives are biased towards anything that builds CVs. So, we  
> have way too many journals that are underwritten by libraries. Even  
> the editors of journals have admitted that very few people read the  
> journals - they exist solely as a means build CVs. In my opinion,  
> if 95% of the world's journals disappeared, there would be no loss  
> in learning or knowledge.

Marcus Banks talks about the idea of having blogs replace journals in  
the field of library and information science, as quoted in Walt  
Crawford's "Cites and Insights", at:

As someone who has blogged, written for, reviewed, and edited,  
journals, I think Marcus has a point.

Also, as has been pointed out before on this list, there should be  
ways for researchers to be appropriately credited for creating and  
sharing datasets.  Participation in wikis and such-like should count,  

> Most people cannot risk studying what they find *really* profound  
> and interesting. The risk of pursuing those hypothesis are high in  
> terms of not getting the work published (not getting credit for the  
> pursuit of their best ideas on the CV). This is the great tragedy.

There is more that is worthy of examination in scholarship than just  
access issues, affordability, and metrics for perfromance  
evaluation.  We would all be better off if our scholars had both  
scope and incentive to pursue the questions that really matter, in my  
opinion; and sometimes, it is only the scholars themselves who  
understand what really matters.  My hope is that current discussions  
about scholarly communication will open the door for these more  
profound discussions.  My understanding is that the idea of tenure  
came from faculty themselves; the main purpose of tenure is to ensure  
academic freedom.  The tenure and promotion committee may seem  
external to each individual scholar, but it is not.  If scholars wish  
things to change, the door is theirs (ours) to open.

Any opinion expressed in this e-mail is that of the author alone, and  
does not represent the opinion or policy of BC Electronic Library  
Network or Simon Fraser University Library.

Heather Morrison, MLIS
The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics

Heather G. Morrison
Project Coordinator
BC Electronic Library Network
Phone:  778-782-7001
Fax: 778.782.3023
Email:  heatherm at eln.bc.ca
Web: http://www.eln.bc.ca

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