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Which clippings match 'Timothy Gowers' keyword pg.1 of 1
29 APRIL 2012

Citations and impact factors are old hat: the Web 2.0 generation needs metrics to match today's scholarship

"As a young academic, I am reliably informed that the landscape of scholarly communication is not what it was 20 years ago. But, despite all that has changed, it seems that we still largely rely upon the same tired and narrow measures of quality and academic impact – namely, citation counts and journal impact factors.

As someone who has used the internet in almost every aspect of their academic work to date, it's hard for me to ignore the fact that these mechanisms, in predating the web, largely ignore its effects.

By holding up these measures as incentives, we appear to have our eye firmly fixed on the hammer and not the nail, adjusting our research habits in order to maximise scores and ignoring issues such as why we publish in the first place."

(Matthew Gamble, 28 July 2011, Times Higher Education)



academic blogs • academic discussion • academic impactacademic papersacademic work • alt-metrics • alt-metrics community • alt-metrics movement • • assessing impactassessment of scholarshipblogCERNcitation • citation counts • citation-based measures • citation-based measures of impactdiverse metricsengaged scholars • existing measures • funding decisions • Harvard Universityimpact • impressions of impact • incentive • Internetjournal impact • journal impact factors • journal output • measurementmeasurement of impactMendeleymetricsnarrow measures • narrow measures of academic impact • narrow measures of quality • new measurement frontieronline • online reference-management service • peer review • platform for scholarly communication • practices of scholarly communication • products of scholarly communication • publication of academic papersquantitative study of scholarship • ReaderMeter • • real-time readership • reference manager • research habits • research impactresearch output • Rouse Ball • Samuel Arbesman • scholarly activity • scholarly activity on the web • scholarly communication • scientific discoveries • second scientific revolution • Tim Berners-Lee • timely indications of impact • Timothy Gowers • traces of scholarship • TwitterUniversity of CambridgeUniversity of North Carolina • utility of the web • Web 2.0 • web as a platform • young academics


Simon Perkins
05 FEBRUARY 2012

Scientific publishing: the price of information

"On January 21st Timothy Gowers, a mathematician at Cambridge University, wrote a blog post outlining the reasons for his longstanding boycott of research journals published by Elsevier. This firm, which is based in the Netherlands, owns more than 2,000 journals, including such top–ranking titles as Cell and the Lancet. However Dr Gowers, who won the Fields medal, mathematics's equivalent of a Nobel prize, in 1998, is not happy with it, and he hoped his post might embolden others to do something similar.

It did. More than 2,700 researchers from around the world have so far signed an online pledge set up by Tyler Neylon, a fellow–mathematician who was inspired by Dr Gowers's post, promising not to submit their work to Elsevier's journals, or to referee or edit papers appearing in them. That number seems, to borrow a mathematical term, to be growing exponentially. If it really takes off, established academic publishers might find they have a revolution on their hands. ...

Dr Neylon's petition, though, is symptomatic of a wider conflict between academics and their publishers–a conflict that is being thrown into sharp relief by the rise of online publishing. Academics, who live in a culture which values the free and easy movement of information (and who edit and referee papers for nothing) have long been uncomfortable bedfellows with commercial publishing companies, which want to maximise profits by charging for access to that information, and who control many (although not all) of the most prestigious scientific journals."

(Feb 4th 2012, The Economist)



academicacademic journalacademicsboycott • bundling • Cambridge University • Cell (journal) • Elsevier (publisher) • free access • free and easy movement of information • funded researchgift culture • Lancet (journal) • libraries • Nick Fowler • online publishing • petition • prestigious • publicationpublisherpublishers • publishing companies • referee papers • Research Works Act • scientific journals • subscribe • taxpayer-funded research • The EconomistTimothy Gowers • Tyler Neylon


Simon Perkins

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