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Where next for openness? KE's 10th anniversary conference, ‘Pathways to open scholarship’

21 December 2015
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Knowledge Exchange's ambitious new vision to promote and enable open scholarship was the subject of energetic debate at our tenth anniversary conference in Helsinki, on the 30th November and 1st December 2015.

Representatives from the five Knowledge Exchange partner organisations and their expert guests shared diverse opinions on the significant challenges that lie ahead for those working to achieve open scholarship as well as differing views on whether progress should be evolutionary or revolutionary. The results of their conversations will be published in a Knowledge Exchange report early in 2016.

Open scholarship refers to the sharing of all the inputs, products and processes involved in scientific research. That includes methods, software, lab notebooks literally everything and many researchers hesitate to embrace this level of openness. So a key aim of the conference was to get delegates to identify paths towards openness that can further the cause of openness with the international research community and with stakeholders in the research process.

Over two days, breakout groups discussed four pathways to open scholarship and the potentials and pitfalls for each:

• the benefits, risks and limitations of open scholarship including issues such as the need for decentralised funding and storage and new approaches to journal subscriptions

• success as a researcher how the benefits of open scholarship can be promoted, how researchers can be supported to adopt open practices willingly, and how their success might be measured in ways that have value to them

• technology how might future technology influence research and how should we build and support the necessary infrastructure?

• publishing and publication services a wide-ranging look at emerging forms of publishing, ways to make the entire research process visible, sustainability and the evolving publishing lifecycle

There is more information on each of these conversations in a series of Google documents listed in the footnotes below, and the Twitter discussions can be found under ♯KEevent15.

The opinions expressed, and the ideas generated, will shape the forthcoming "Pathways to open scholarship" report and help Knowledge Exchange to prioritise its activities. They will also inform Knowledge Exchange's work with national governments and the European Commission as it proceeds with its own plans for open scholarship.

A wish list outlining the actions identified at the conference is available on the Knowledge Exchange website, and the final report expected to be published in early 2016. In the meantime you can explore more about the conference on Storify: https://storify.com/jpve/knowledge-exchange-10-years

You can also review a series of video statements from participants at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFv-76jNZlBFp6O9umdnyDA

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