Wrap Up

In this module we have explored the publication ecosystem, including how the current system is impacting the academy.

Key Takeaways

  • The current publication ecosystem and academic promotion processes prioritize metrics and rankings of publications, such as Journal Impact Factors and H-Index, as measures of quality which can have negative impacts on academic work.
  • The advent of the internet and open access was seen as a potential game-changer to wrestle control of academic publishing back from for-profit publishers and into the hands of the academy; however, this has not occurred as publishers find ways to monetize open access options.
  • Consolidation of publishers has negatively impacted the costs of academic outputs but, of greater potential harm is the impact private industry has on what is and is not published (i.e. greater focus on positive results and novel studies).
  • Publishers have expanded to offer research analytic tools as a means of monetizing research performance and benchmarks causing further questions around how value and quality are conflated through quantitative measurement.