Thursday, June 28, 2018

EASE Council Announcement

Following the elections and official appointments at our recent conference in Bucharest, we are pleased to officially announce the new EASE Council for 2018-2021 in full on our website.

The Council, headed by President Pippa Smart and Vice-Presidents Duncan Nicholas and Ines Steffens, features 15 members from different backgrounds in research, journal editing and the publishing industry, who will be giving EASE their expert direction and influence on all aspects of the academic publishing spectrum.

We are very excited for the Association to be led by this new team, look forward to developing our contributions to the science editing profession and providing our members with a wealth of resources, guidance and community experience to enhance their work.

Visit the Organisation pages on our website to meet our new team.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Publication disclosure

Sing Chawla D. Most researchers disclose their results before publication. Physics World 2018 May 17

Over two thirds of researchers have released the results of at least one study they authored before the findings were formally published. A survey of more than 7,000 researchers across nine disciplines found that social scientists, mathematicians, biological scientists and those working in agriculture have the highest disclosure rates, around 75%. Most academics do so to get feedback from peers.

Implicit biases

Berg J. Measuring and managing bias. Science 2017;357(6354):849
(doi: 10.1126/science.aap7679)

Implicit biases - those that we are not consciously aware of - are intrinsic human characteristics that should be acknowledged and managed, rather than denied or ignored. Implicit association tests can be a useful tool for understanding and measuring implicit biases. Even those involved in research should consider randomizing and blinding experiments, including animal and other studies, when feasible.

The phrase "necessary and sufficient"

YoshiharaM, Yoshihara M. "Necessary and sufficient" in biology is not necessarily necessary - confusions and erroneous conclusions resulting from misapplied logic in the field of biology, especially neuroscience. Journal of Neurogenetics 2018;32(2):53-64
(doi: 10.1080/01677063.2018.1468443) 

In this article, the authors describe an incorrect use of logic in current biology (especially neuroscience) which involves the careless application of the "necessary and sufficient" (N&S) condition originally used in formal logic. The words N&S are not only misleading, but the way of thinking of researchers when they use them is often incorrect. In most cases, they propose to use "indispensable and inducing".

Friday, June 15, 2018

Preclinical research reporting

Lightfoot H. Reporting of preclinical research: what do we get told - when and how? Medical Writing 2017 (4):20-23
At present, there are no specific requirements for the reporting of preclinical research, and many studies, particularly those with negative results, never get published. However, routine and reliable reporting of all research – preclinical, clinical, laboratory, animal or human based, and with positive or negative outcomes – is essential to the future of collaborative and successful clinical research. There are several new ideas to promote this.

Publishing gendered system

Lundine J, Bourgeault IL, Clark J, et al. The gendered system of academic publishing. The Lancet 2018;391(10132):1754-56
(doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(18)30950-4)

Despite growing numbers of women in the research workforce, most authors, peer reviewers, and editors at academic journals are men. This leads to a women's underrepresentation and disadvantage in other areas of the scientific enterprise. Women receive less research funding, and thus they publish fewer research articles, being less visible and less likely invited as peer reviewers and editors. Editors and publishers should address those gender gaps.

B - A new taxonomy of retractions and corrections

Fanelli D, Ioannidis JPA, Goodman S. Improving the integrity of published science: An expanded taxonomy of retractions and corrections. European Journal of Clinical Investigation 2018;48(4):e12898
(doi: 10.1111/eci.12898)

Journal practices for amending publications offer too little incentives for authors and editors to correct or retract articles when errors have been made. The authors present a a unique and expanded set of amendment formats and procedures, each of which addresses a distinct issue. This new taxonomy integrates and unifies the diversity of formats currently deployed and suggests five new ones.


Stark PB. Before reproducibility must come preproducibility. Nature 2018 May 24
(doi: 10.1038/d41586-018-05256-0)

Most papers fail to report many aspects of an experiment or an analysis that are crucial to understanding the result and its limitations, and to repeating the work. The author proposes a new neologism, "preproducibility", meaning that an experiment or analysis is preproducible if it has been described in adequate detail for others to undertake it. It requires information about materials, instruments and procedures; experimental design; raw data; computational tools used in analyses; and other information.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Conference newsletters uploaded

The Poenaru Post is the daily newsletter accompanying the 14th EASE Conference, printed Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with a digital-only edition on Monday following the conference, to summarise the final day.

Our newsletter is named after Petrache Poenaru, the physicist inventor who created the fountain pen after making an ink reservoir from a swan's quill during his studies in 1827. He seemed to be an appropriate muse to go alongside our conference logo, bringing our delegates their daily review of conference activities and Romanian trivia.

We have made each newsletter available here, as a memento for those who attended and as a summary of the events for those who could not be there.

Poenaru Post Issue 1. Friday 8th June
Poenaru Post Issue 2. Saturday 9th June
Poenaru Post Issue 3. Sunday 10th June
Poenaru Post Issue 4. Monday 11th June


Duncan Nicholas: (EASE Vice-President)

Sam Hinsley (The Lancet)
Ashley Cooper (The Lancet)
Kate McIntosh (The Lancet)
Jamie Lundine (Gender, Work and Health Research Unit , University of Ottowa)
Joan Marsh - Talent scout (The Lancet)

This page will also remain as a permanent fixture in our conference pages here

- Thursday 13th June, 2018 -

Friday, June 08, 2018

B - Journal identity theft

Cochran A. Paper accepted... unless the letter was forged. The Scholarly Kitchen 2018 Apr 18

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has become aware of seven fake acceptance letters for its journals over the last five years. Someone promised acceptance in a journal and misrepresented a relationship with ASCE. Also a certain number of conferences advertized that the top 10 papers submitted would be sent to one of ASCE journals. The author, ASCE Associate Publisher and Journals Director, suggests adding detailed and complete information to instructions for authors about what an author should expect to happen when submitting a paper.

B - Experimental philosophy

Colombo M, Duev G, Nuijten MB, et al. Statistical reporting inconsistencies in experimental philosophy. PLOS One 2018 Apr 22
(doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0194360)

Experimental philosophy (x-phi) is a young field of research in the intersection of philosophy and psychology. This article investigated the prevalence of statistical reporting errors in x-phi. Results showed that the rates of inconsistencies in x-phi are lower than in the psychological and behavioural sciences.

B - Anonimity in scientific publishing

Roediger HL. Anonimity in scientific publishing. Observer 2018;31(4)

Is there room for anonymous manuscript submissions and reviews in the era of transparency in science? In this article, the Past President of the Association for Psychological Science (APS) provides some insights in publication practices. Anonymous submission helps researchers who are starting out giving them a shot at a fairer process, but there are counterarguments. And signing reviews represents a danger to young scholars who might be advising rejection of a paper of a someone senior who might later be editor or be asked to write a reference letter for the reviewer.

B - Journal selection criteria

Wijewickrema M, Petras V. Journal selection criteria in an open access environment: A comparison between the medicine and social sciences. Learned Publishing 2017;30(4)
(doi: 10.1002/leap.1113)

This study compares 16 factors that influence journal choices between medicine and social sciences using the answers given to a global survey of 235 open access journal authors. The results reveal that authors of both areas consider "peer reviewed" status as the most important factor. Those in medicine area give more consideration to: impact factor, inclusion in abstracting and indexing services, publisher's prestige, and online submission with tracking facility.

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

B - Do physicians read medical journals?

Packer M. Does anyone read medical journals anymore? Medpage Today 2018 March 28

In the past physicians kept up with the medical literature. But today dutifully physicians just click on the table of contents, and spend less than 30 seconds perusing the titles and rarely click on actual paper. Much of the literature is replete with data and analyses that are satisfying to the authors, but fall unnoticed to possible readers.

B - Analysis on peer review research

Grimaldo F, Marušić A, Squazzoni F. Fragments of peer review: A quantitative analysis of the literature (1969-2015). PLOS ONE 2018 Feb 21
(doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0193148)

This paper examines research on peer review between 1969 and 2015 by looking at records indexed from the Scopus database. The most prolific and influential scholars, the most cited publications and the most important journals in the field were identified. The number of publications doubled from 2005, with more tradition in the US but with important research groups also in Europe. There is a lack of large-scale, cross-disciplinary collaboration.

B - Open access to bibliographic references

Shotton D. Funders should mandate open citations. Nature 2018 Jan 9

Analyses of citations can reveal how scientific knowledge develops over time and illuminate patterns of authorship. Such information is essential for assessing scholars' influence and making wise decisions about research investment. Bibliographic databases and citation indices are also crucial to individual reasearchers to find relevant papers throughout the literature. According to the author, all publishers must make bibliographic references free to access, analyse and reuse.

B - How to be a great journal editor

How to be a great journal editor: advice from eight top academic editors. Times Higher Education Features 2017, Dec. 14

Editing an academic journal is a vital and rewarding task, but also time-consuming and often frustrating. All eight top academic editors provide a contribution on their experiences  on various issues: peer review, editing a small journal, promoting good science, and other tasks.

Monday, June 04, 2018

B - Detection of duplicated images

Acuna DE, Brookes PS, Kording KP. Bioscience-scale automated detection of figure element reuse. bioRxiv 2018 Feb. 22
(doi: 10.1101/269415)

The authors describe a copy-move detection algorithm that finds reused images in the biological sciences literature even if they have been rotated, resized or had their contrast or colours changed. An analysis of figure element reuse is presented on a large dataset comprising 760,000 open access articles and 2 million figures.

B - Author credit

McNutt MK, Bradford M, Drazen JM, et al. Transparency in authors' contributions and responsibilities to promote integrity in scientific publication. PNAS 2018;201715374
(doi: 10.1073/pnas.1715374115)

The authors, a group of editors and publishers, propose changes to journal authorship policies and procedures to provide insight into which author is responsible for which contributions, assurance that the list is complete, and clearly articulated standards to justify authorship credit. They recommend that journals adopt common and transparent standards for authorship.

B - Population diversity in clinical trials

Knepper TC, McLeod HL. When will clinical trials finally reflect diversity? Nature 2018;557:157-159

Many studies show that the likelihood, nature and severity of side effects from a medication can differ between populations. For this reason, funders and researchers have repeatedly said that clinical trials should include more participants from ethnic minorities. An analysis of drug studies shows that most participants are white, even though trials are being done in more countries.

Friday, June 01, 2018

EASE Conference Fringe Event

EASE is pround to present a Conference Fringe Event, in association with the British Council and Scientific Organisation of Medical Students.

On 7th June, the evening before our conference begins, EASE President, Ana Marusic will be speaking at a forum hosted by the British Council in Romania and the Scientific Organisation of Medical Students (SOMS).

The lecture is aimed at young medical students, to discuss issues surrounding scientific communication, principles of research methodology, research integrity and peer review.

The event will feature a speech from British Council director Nigel Bellingham, contributions from medical students and early career professionals associated with SOMS, and a discussion moderated by Mihai Stancu, PHD candidate at Maximilian University of Munich.

This lecture will be promoted through British Council online channels as a fringe event connected to the 14th EASE Conference at the University of Bucharest.

Where: British Council Library
Calea Dorobanți 14, București 010572, Romania

When: Thursday 7th June, 19:30