Springer Nature IPO Withdrawn

Why Was Springer Nature’s IPO Withdrawn?

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Towards an Access and Discovery “Supercontinent”?

Roger Schonfeld paints the current picture of access and discovery in a must-read article for everyone interested the so-called researcher experience:

Will a supercontinent emerge for discovery and access? Time will tell. Meanwhile, users have long become impatient of the wait.

Additional Reading

Green, Toby (2018). Let’s Hear It for Readers. Fiesole Retreat: Serving Learning & Scholarship.

Schonfeld, Roger C. (2018). The Supercontinent of Scholarly Publishing? The Scholarly Kitchen.

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Springer Nature Announces IPO

From Reuters:

Springer Nature, the publisher of science magazines Nature and Scientific American, is planning to raise 1.2 billion euros ($1.5 billion) by selling new shares in an initial public offering (IPO).


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Clarivate Acquires Discovery Startup Kopernio

Kopernio, a startup aiming to make acquiring PDFs more seamless, has been acquired by Clarivate (owner of Web of Science, Publons, and more):

Kopernio underscores one truism remarkably clearly: You cannot serve as a starting point for discovery, as Web of Science proposes to do, if you cannot provide seamless access to content resources. Trust, authority, starting point, and seamlessness begin to blend together in ways that all discovery providers should take note.

Additional commentary: https://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/2018/04/10/clarivate-acquires-kopernio/

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Tighter Rules for Nature: Non-Financial Conflicts Declaration

Nature and all Nature Research journals now require authors to declare any non-financial conflicts of interest:

Competing interests (both financial and non-financial) are defined as a secondary interest that could directly undermine, or be perceived to undermine, the objectivity, integrity and value of a publication through a potential influence on the judgments and actions of authors with regard to objective data presentation, analysis and interpretation. Non-financial competing interests can include a range of personal and/or professional relationships with organizations and individuals, including membership of governmental, non-governmental, advocacy or lobbying organizations, or serving as an expert witness.

Read more: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-01420-8

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What is Blockchain?

There’s a new buzzword on the block, blockchain. Discussion has emerged regarding blockchain and its possible applicability to the next-generation of persistent document identifiers (PIDs; like ORCIDs, DOIs):

Blockchain is a technology for decentralized, self-regulating data which can be managed and organized in a revolutionary new way: open, permanent, verified and shared, without the need of a central authority.

Read more at Scholarly Kitchen and in this presentation.

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“Predation” Update: Beall’s Archive Up and Running

An anonymous scholar is now maintaining an archive of Beall’s List:


Additional Reading

Derek Lowe provides an update, generally, on “predation”:


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Dr. Martin Grötschel Speaks Out on Scholarly Publishing

Dr. Martin Grötschel, President of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities

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Share Your Academic Spam

Academia spam getting you down? You are not alone:


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“Astroturfers” and Open Science 2020 Platforms

The European Commission (EC) has assigned Robert-Jan Smits as head of the “open science” envoy to the European Political Strategy Centre, according to the University World News.

Smits’ strategic appointment, by EC President Jean-Claude Juncker, comes at a time of anticipation for how 2020 open access/science deadlines will be met and how the EC will facilitate compliance with related mandates. Current discussion right now revolves around the next-generation EC-funded open science platforms, with the EC call for proposals for these soon to be released:

Researchers are keen to know whether we will now see for-profit companies and ‘astroturfers’ enter the open science landscape and undermine science in pursuit of their commercial interests, while claiming to support the struggle of researchers – notably those in Germany, in their fight against Elsevier – who demand more say in the publishing of scholarly articles.

Additional Reading

Lykkja, P.M. &  Myklebust, J.P. (2018). Open science in the EU – Will the astroturfers take over? University World News. 497. http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20180317044918836

Rabesandratana, T. (2018). One of the most powerful science policy jobs in Brussels changes hands. Science Newsdoi:10.1126/science.aat4124

Urban Dictionary. astroturf. https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=astroturf


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