Friday, January 17, 2014

B - Methods of assessing a scientific paper

Eyre-Walker A, Stoletzki N. The assessment of science: the relative merits of post-publication review, the impact factor, and the number of citations. PLoS Biology 2013;11(10):e1001675
(doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001675)

This article investigates three methods of assessing the merit of a scientific paper: subjective post-publication peer review, the impact factor of the journal in which the article was published, and the number of citations gained by a paper. According to the conclusions, the three measures of scientific merit considered are poor; in particular subjective assessments are an error-prone, biased, and expensive method by which to assess merit. The authors argue that the impact factor may be the most satisfactory of the methods considered, since it is a form of pre-publication review. However, it is likely to be a very error-prone measure of merit that is qualitative, not quantitative.

B - Open peer review: a review of the literature

Ford E. Defining and characterizing open peer review: a review of the literature. Journal of Scholarly Publishing 2013; 44(4):311-326 
(doi: 10.1353/scp.2013.0028)

This article examines the literature discussing open peer review, identifies common open peer review definitions, and describes eight common characteristics of open peer review: signed review, disclosed review, editor-mediated review, transparent review, crowd-sourced review, pre-publication review, synchronous review, and post-publication review. This article further discusses benefits and challenges to the scholarly publishing community posed by open peer review and concludes that open peer review can and should exist within the current scholarly publishing paradigm.

B - Bibliometric indicators of Russian journals

Libkind AN, Markusova VA, Mindeli LE, et al. Bibliometric indicators of Russian journals by JCR-Science Edition, 1995-2010. Acta Naturae 2013;5(3):6-12

A representative empirical bibliometric analysis of the Russian journals covered by the Journal Citation Reports-Science Edition (JCR -SE) for the period 1995–2010 has been conducted for the first time at the macro level (excluding subject categories). The growth in the number of articles covered by JCR  is ahead of the growth rates of Russian publications. The Russian research performance is staggering (approximately 30,000 articles per year) although the coverage of Russian journals has expanded to 150 titles. Over the past 15 years a twofold increase in the impact factor of the Russian journals has been observed. Measures to improve the quality of Russian journals are proposed, as for example the quality of their translation into English.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

B - Reducing waste from reports of biomedical research

Glasziou P, Altman DG, Bossuyt P, et al. Reducing waste from incomplete or unusable reports of biomedical research. The Lancet Jan.8, 2014
(doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62228-X)

Most publications have elements that are missing, poorly reported, or ambiguous. Reporting guidelines such as CONSORT, STARD, PRISMA, and ARRIVE aim to improve the quality of research reports, but all are much less adopted and adhered to than they should be. Some immediate action can be taken to improve the reporting of research: change the current system of research rewards and regulations to encourage better and more complete reporting, and fund the development and maintenance of infrastructure to support better reporting, linkage, and archiving of all elements of research.

B - Reduce waste in research design, conduct, and analysis

Ioannidis JPA,Greenland S, Htlatky MA, et al. Increasing value and reducing waste in research design, conduct, and analysis. The Lancet Jan.8, 2014
(doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62227-8)

The authors outlined several problems and solutions to reduce waste in the design, conduct, and analysis of research. Potential solutions include improvements in protocols and documentation, consideration of evidence from studies in progress, standardisation of research efforts, optimisation and training of an experienced and non-conflicted scientific workforce, and reconsideration of scientific reward systems.

B - How to increase value and reduce waste in biomedical research

Chalmers I, Bracken M, Djulbegovic B, et al. How to increase value and reduce waste when research priorities are set. The Lancet 2014;383(9912):156-165
(doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62229-1)

This is the first article in a series of five papers published in The Lancet about "Research: increasing value, reducing waste". It is focused on the reductions in waste of resources resulting from decisions about what research to do. Four recommendations are given, i.e.: the ways to improve the yield from basic research should be investigated; the funders should inform about the transparencyof processes; investment in additional research should be preceded by systematic assessment of existing evidence; and finally, sources of information about research in progress should be strengthened and developed and used by researchers.