Funding priorities

The following funding priorities are flexible. Plan A funders will work together to decide which deliverables to fund at what level and in what order. Plan A funders are welcome to earmark their contributions for specific deliverables listed below, or request that their funding go toward different deliverables (subject to the approval of Plan A’s advisory board):

Budget focus
Studies
Infrastructure
Outreach / Education
Common ground building
Climate change focus
Compassionate use focus
Plan A annual revenue (US$) Studies Infrastructure Outreach & Education Common ground work Climate change focus Compassionate use focus
$0        
$50,000      
$150,000
$250,000 ✅✅ ✅✅ ✅✅ ✅✅ ✅✅
$500,000 ✅✅ ✅✅✅ ✅✅ ✅✅✅ ✅✅✅ ✅✅✅
$1 million + ✅✅ ✅✅✅✅ ✅✅✅ ✅✅✅✅ ✅✅✅✅ ✅✅✅✅
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 Predatory publishing What are the exact dimensions and implications of predatory publishing—how fast is it growing, how is it changing, how is it impacting research, and more? This will be a novel analysis using proprietary data. The findings will help guide policy response on this issue. $75,000 1 year from funding
2 Impact factors How can we reduce misuse of the journal impact factor? Is inventing a different impact factor the answer? If so, what does this look like in practice? This will be a novel examination involving statistical critiques of the JIF. The findings will help guide development of better tools and practices for assessing impact. $50,000 2 years from funding
3 Embargos Can embargos be reduced or eliminated? If so, how? This will be the first effort to generate actual data on embargos via a blind study conducted with cooperation from major commercial publishers. Researcher surveys will also be conducted. The findings will help inform policy decisions regarding how quickly journal articles can be made publicly accessible. $50,000 2 years from funding
4 Open spectrum What kinds of open are most effective in what fields and for what purposes? What kinds of open are most desired by field and type of study? How are open and closed data being used today and what are the real-world pros and cons? Research team surveys will be conducted, alongside an extensive literature review. The findings will help align open policies with what researchers need and/or are able to use. $100,000 2 years from funding
5 Culture of communication in academia What global approaches will succeed at shifting the culture of communication in academia toward more openness? This study will involve a meta-analysis of existing work in this field, supplemented with surveys of university provosts. The findings will help inform the design of policies geared toward improving the acceptance and adoption of open practices at research universities. $75,000 2 years from funding
6 Open
impacts
What are the demonstrable impacts on research and society of openness? The open access citation advantage is just one such measure; how else are impacts being measured and what kind of quantitative comparisons can we make? This study will involve a meta-analysis of existing work on this topic, including interdisciplinary scholarship on systems. Combined with the understanding derived from other studies, this work will help policy makers and research administrators better understand exactly what impacts are being sought by open policies, what impacts can be reasonably expected, and how policies should change to improve impact. $100,000 3 years
7-50 Other Open roadmap development; global flip analysis; global publishing standards development; replicating the SciELO model in specific regions; improving scholarly publishing research; a closer look at publisher profit margins; other $50,000 each 1 year each
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 APC
discount/subsidy database
There are no databases of article processing charges (APCs) or subscription discounts or subsidies. Research4Life leaders have noted that building such resources would be immensely helpful to authors. OSI researchers will collect and input initial APC and discount/subsidy data over a period of six months, after which point publishers and discount/subsidy providers will be given instructions on how to keep their data current. $20,000 6 months
2 APC
price comparison database
APC price shopping may not exist yet simply
because there is no tool to help facilitate this (price is a factor, but surveys have shown that authors care more about quality and impact than price). An APC price comparator tool might therefore be of service to the global scholarly communication community. No such tool currently exists. The development and deployment of this tool would need to proceed with care. While providing price information is valuable, we don’t want to help promote fake journals either.
$20,000 6 months
3 Global
open indicators + annual survey of open
Our community needs some way to better assess, on a regular and comparable basis, how much open exists and where, and where we need to focus our efforts for more improvement. This task can be triangulated upon from several angles, including an annual survey of the state of open (current surveys are irregular and don’t have a common baseline or common methodology), and a global open indicators tool that can measure open more granularly and by region, country, field, etc. (the indicators tool may be developed in collaboration with UNESCO). $75,000 12 months to develop + 2
months/year thereafter
4 Journal
whitelist/blacklist lookup
This system-wide lookup tool will be used to verify whether a journal is listed on a particular index, and will help dissuade citing non-indexed and possibly suspect work. Journals will be encouraged to adopt an editorial policy whereby if a referenced journal does not appear on a whitelist, then authors must justify the citation. $50,000 18 months to develop
pilot
5 Yelp
site for journals
OSI will build a few tools that have wide “category-killer” appeal and real paradigm-shifting potential for scholarly communication. A Yelp site for journals is one such tool. The core purpose of the Yelp site is to provide an easy-to-use, familiar-looking interface where customers (authors, editors, reviewers, funders and more) can rate scholarly journals and where publishers can provide important contact and product information—a link to their website, a summary of their products and services, links and credentialing badges that verify data such as indexing and impact factors, and much more. Customers will be able to search this database for publishers in their field, price range, region and more—like the actual Yelp site, searches can be filtered in a wide variety of ways. Customers will also be able to provide reviews regarding their experiences with publishers, which will help round out the data provided by Cabell’s blacklist and other information sources. Ad revenue will help support the upkeep and sustainability of this product, with excess revenues accruing to OSI toward the development of OSI’s other products (and studies); sponsorship support will also be important. This will be a complicated product to develop, launch and fine-tune, and very labor intensive as well. $100,000

18 months to develop pilot

 

6 All-Scholarship
Repository
The All-Scholarship Repository (ASR) is the ultimate game changer in scholarly communication. Rather than continuing to rely on (and expand) our global network of institutional and national repositories, and then exert herculean and ultimately inadequate efforts to connect the meta data in these repositories (which ends up only providing a glimpse into the contents of each repository, not full access to the contents themselves—at least at the moment), ASR jumps over this step and instead creates a single warehouse for all scholarly research content. In terms of architecture, ASR would be single database with many spokes—many independent owner/ operator channels through which data can be added and outputs can be customized. The central ASR database would be replicated and archived continuously; it would also be cloned by owner/operators. A fuller description of the ASR concept and operation is available in the appendix of OSI’s February 2015 report (OSIWG 2015). $350,000 2 years to develop pilot
version
7-50 Other There are many good ideas floating around the scholarly communication community—developing an open impact factor, a global journal index, an iTunes-like single article download site, or global publishing standards; better funding existing infrastructure like DOAJ; and more. The Plan A funding group will decide which of these projects to prioritize. Approx. $20,000-$200,000
each
Appox. 2 years for each
pilot
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 Global
Open Access Portal (GOAP)
Built in collaboration with UNESCO, this portal will be a comprehensive resource for all open-related information, organizations, definitions, processes, and so on. $25,000 annually 6 months for pilot, 10
hours/week to maintain
2 OSI
briefs & reports
OSI has accumulated a wealth of knowledge over its four years of operation. We are publishing readable two-page issue summaries (briefs) and longer policy papers that consolidate and translate this knowledge for lay audiences. A few of these have been published to-date; many more are planned. These materials will be a central component of UNESCO’s GOAP. $15,000 annually   1-2 months per report  
2 Misc.
education
A variety of one-off education efforts are needed for specific purposes—-for instance, to combat predatory publishing through improved awareness of this issue. Varies Varies
3 Misc.
engagement
A variety of “engagement resources” are needed for bringing together the scholarly communication community (not events, which are described in the “Common Ground” section). For instance, our community needs an annual report similar to what the STM Association publishes annually on the state of STM publishing. Varies (at the high end,
$50,000 annually for survey or report)
Varies
4-50 There are a number of high priority needs in this space. The Plan A funding group will decide which
of these to prioritize, with a focus on funding projects that provide broad and nonpartisan background on open (not projects teaching that open looks like x, or trading in negative stereotypes about publishers or other stakeholder groups, but projects that teach what open means to various constituencies, the benefits of open, ways to engage in open, etc.)
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 UNESCO
open roadmap
Continue helping/advising UNESCO in creating a UN-wide roadmap for the future of open science   – 18 months  
2 Meetings Meetings are needed all stakeholders can discuss the outlines of a new global roadmap for open scholarship (both independently and as part of UNESCO’s global roadmap effort), and where diverse groups can work together to better understand the needs, goals and concerns of researchers in different disciplines, fields, labs, regions and institutions, and career stages. $50,000 per meeting 4 months planning and
follow-up per meeting
3 Surveys We need a clearer and more detailed understanding of exactly what researchers want and need, what they will use, and what we hope to accomplish with reforms so we can make sure to ask the right questions, collect the right
data, and pursue the right solutions.
$20,000 per survey 6 months
4-50 The OSI2016 and 2017 workgroups came up with a long list of recommendations for collaborative actions
in the scholarly communication space. These should be carefully looked at by the Plan A group as possible projects. See the OSI2017 report (on the OSI website) for details.
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 Open
policy meetings
Climate science is closed relative to many other fields. Figuring out how to make it more open is critical—to enable scientists from all countries and from all fields related to climate science to share their data more freely on everything from atmospheric carbon removal technology to methane capture to temperature modeling. $50,000 investment per
meeting (net invest is $0)
4 months planning and
follow-up per meeting
2 Education
conventions
Conventions are needed to educate business and policy groups about the range of existing tech options for carbon and methane capture. Presentations should also take place at these meetings on barriers to action, risks of uncoordinated action, forming international networks for investment and action, etc. $100,000 investment per
meeting (net invest is $0)
4 months planning and
follow-up per meeting
3 Action
frameworks
Once the data is clear and the barriers and risks have been assessed, action frameworks can begin taking shape. Openness will be key in this—establishing frameworks built on discoverable information, communicated clearly to policy makers and the public, with clear, sound, accountable objectives in mind and strong sustainability. $75,000 annually 6-12 months to begin
making measurable progress
4 Replicability Once developed, OSI’s climate change model can be replicated to other research challenges.
Priority Subject Summary Estimated
cost (US$)
Estimated
time required
1 Open
policy meetings
Compassionate use access to medical research is spotty. Publishers have some one-off mechanisms in place for daylighting research during times of global health crisis (such as COVID-19 research. Several international conventions also exist. However, there are no turnkey procedures or resources in place. Figuring out how to make critically needed health and medical research available to researchers and policy makers (as well as individuals researching cures for loved ones) will fill an important needs gap in the scholarly communication space. The first step is to meet to talk about needs, gaps, barriers, possible solutions, etc. $50,000 investment per
meeting (net invest is $0)
4 months planning and
follow-up per meeting
2 Action
frameworks
Once the challenge is clear and the options have been assessed, action frameworks can begin taking shape. Openness will be key in this—establishing frameworks built on discoverable information, communicated clearly to policy makers and the public, with clear, sound, accountable objectives in mind and strong sustainability. $75,000 annually 6-12 months to begin
making measurable progress
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