OSW2021: Opening Keynote: The Transition to Open Science
From Hardy Schwamm
OSW2021 Opening Keynote: The Transition to Open ScienceOpening keynote of the Open Scholarship Week 2021 by Professor Frank Miedema on the the transition to Open Science
It has been realized since the turn of the century that major imperfections (flaws, ‘perverse incentives’ as some would say) have developed in the governance of science and academia. These imperfections till this time are major factors that interfere with the promise of the contribution of science to society. They relate directly to the current incentive and rewards system that has become dominant over time, which is very internally oriented and steers for impact within science more than for societal impact. Researchers find themselves pursuing work that gives the most academic credit and is better for career advancement. Every year millions of papers are being published in a still growing number of journals behind paywalls. It is now widely acknowledged that we have a serious pervasive reproducibility and accessibility crisis.
In May 2016, the EU Competitiveness Council adopted conclusions on ‘The transition towards an Open Science system’ where it acknowledges that “Open Science has the potential to increase the quality, impact and benefits of science and to accelerate advancement of knowledge by making it more reliable, more efficient and accurate, better understandable by society and responsive to societal challenges, and has the potential to enable growth and innovation through reuse of scientific results by all stakeholders at all levels of society, and ultimately contribute to growth and competitiveness of Europe”. Open Science encompasses Open Access, Open Research Agenda, Data and Methods, Open Source, Open Educational Resources, Open Evaluation, and Citizen Science. The implementation of Open Science touches upon the social roles and responsibilities of publicly funded research and the organization of the science system. Academic leadership is crucial, but national strategies for the implementation of Open Science are essential including Open Science champions and role models. This is an important change in our thinking about science in society.
Open Science is a new Social Contract for Science in the 21st century that will change the daily practice of our research and will affect all of us in the science community and academia. Therefore, the EU and many major funders in the public and private sector rely on Open Science to get more impact from investments in science. It is now widely understood that this requires a change in scholarly publishing and the incentive & reward system that can only be brought about when Academic Leadership and the researchers work together.
NUI Galway Librarian John Cox will moderate this session.About the speaker:
Frank Miedema is Vice Rector for Research at Utrecht University and chair of the Utrecht University Open Science Program. He studied biochemistry at the University of Groningen, specialising in Immunology, with a minor in the Philosophy of Science. He obtained a PhD from the University of Amsterdam at the Central Laboratory of the Blood Transfusion Service (CLB), now Sanquin. From 1983, he was a project leader there in the immunovirology of HIV/AIDS, as part of the Amsterdam Cohort Studies.
In 1996, he was appointed full professor at the AMC/University of Amsterdam and became Director of Sanquin Research in 1998. In 2004, he became head of the Immunology Department at the University Medical Center Utrecht. From January 2009 to March 2019 he was dean and vice chairman of the Executive Board of the University Medical Center Utrecht. He is one of the initiators in 2013 of Science in Transition who believe that the academic incentive and reward system is in need of fundamental reform. Next to Science for Science (articles in ‘high-impact’ journals), the impact on society must be valued more and societal stakeholders should be involved more integrally in the production of knowledge.