What researchers want from academic publishing: Report based on over 2,500 researchers' comments

What researchers want from academic publishing: Report based on over 2,500 researchers' comments

A few months ago, Editage—a leading global scholarly communications company—released a comprehensive report based on a global author survey capturing the views of almost 7000 researchers on different aspects of scholarly publishing. In the last question of the survey, researchers were asked to provide comments on what they would like to change about the academic publishing system. As a qualitative follow up to the survey report, Editage has now released a report that analyzes all comments received in response to this question titled What changes would researchers like to see in academic publishing?

The main themes that emerged as problems that researchers want addressed were delays in publication, peer review quality and processes, high publishing-related costs, complexity of journal guidelines and systems, and inadequate adoption of open access. Other notable themes included different types of biases in publishing, problems specifically faced by early career researchers, and lack of transparency in the system.

Capturing the comments of over 2,500 researchers around the world, this Editage report represents one of the largest populations of researchers whose open-ended responses have been studied in relation to academic publishing. Furthermore, over 90% of respondents who said changes are needed in the system provided supporting comments, which is a staggering volume of responses for the last question of an exhaustive survey.

"Given the high author participation we saw for the entire survey, we knew that we would obtain significant insights once we delved into the open-ended comments the respondents had provided," says Clarinda Cerejo, Associate Vice President, Scholarly Communications, at Editage. "What we had not expected was the sheer number of supporting comments we would receive for this particular question, despite it being the last question. Many of the comments were elaborate, incisive, practical, and heartfelt. It was always our intention, through the survey, to make the voices of global researchers heard loud and clear within the scholarly publishing community, and what better way than by analyzing and presenting the actual comments of our survey respondents! We believe that this report will directly speak to journals, publishers, and academic societies who serve researchers and want direct access to their opinions."

This new report, released just ahead of the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) annual conference 2019, one of the largest global conferences in the scholarly communications industry, is likely to trigger a lot of interesting conversations. Editage also intends to make public the most meaningful comments received through the survey, so that they can serve as a guiding light for bringing about meaningful changes in scholarly publishing.

The report can be downloaded here.

If you are going to be at SSP 2019 in San Diego, don't miss your chance to stop by the Editage booth (Booth no. 218) to meet Editage folks and grab a hardcopy of the report!

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