Subduing the “moral panic”: Sustaining a nuanced conversation about predatory publishing
AbstractIntroduction: Predatory publishing has long raised alarm bells among faculty, librarians and research administrators. Often falsely conflated with open access publishing as a whole, predatory publishing is painted as a grievous threat to the sanctity of scholarly research and a waste of research funding. However, the 'moral panic'* over predatory publishing may be unjustified. Equipping researchers to make informed decisions about publishing is a more sustainable approach. Building partnerships and sharing evidence about faculty publishing patterns can support this type of advocacy. Description: Librarians at institutions without subscriptions to costly citation analysis tools such as Scopus may find it difficult to analyze open access publishing patterns. However, freely available academic search tools such as The Lens can provide useful snapshots to guide education and support for researchers. Data from Brock University indicates that our faculty are overwhelmingly publishing in OA journals which would not typically be deemed predatory. Partnering with institutional research services via outreach and workshops has allowed the Library to share this data and other information about open access with key audiences of research administrators and faculty. Outcomes: This outreach helps the Library to guide researchers towards a more robust understanding of open access and scholarly publishing and away from reliance on problematic tools such as blacklists. In addition to helping authors make informed decisions about where to publish, such programming has boosted uptake for research consultations around publishing and open access. Discussion: The presenter will share tools and strategies for implementing this collaborative approach at other libraries.
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