Issue 67

Open Science Newsletter


In pursuit of open science, open access is not enough. In their comment in Science, Claudio Aspesi and Amy Brand argue for a diversified ecosystem for data analytics and academic infrastructure. This is an important point. A diverse academic ecosystem based on open, common standards is necessary to enable a level and accessible playing field for its various participants. 

Tamir Borensztajn discusses EBSCO’s move into open research platforms such as Code Ocean, and Arkivum. The motivation is around “tools that may support the research community in its work and simultaneously enable libraries to gain much-needed stewardship over the totality of the research output.” This implies a stronger focus on libraries as the actual customer versus individual researchers as the users — something seen with open access publishing models as well.

FDA Authorizes A Simple And Cost Effective Ventilator Designed By Particle Physics Community To Address Coronavirus Related Shortages. It costs only a few hundred Euros to make.

TRIPLE has launched a User Research Survey. The European project aims to develop a multilingual and multicultural discovery platform in the Social Sciences and Humanities and is seeking input, for example on work practices relating to digital technologies.


ResearchGate and Wiley have announced a cooperation agreement. This is another major publisher working together with the platform. Key aspects of the agreement appear to be around article discovery, sharing of usage metrics and identification of copyright infringements. 

The Center of Open Science’s TOP Factor journal metric will be integrated in the Web of Science journal list. The TOP Factor reflects journal support for a number of open research practices.

The Megajournal Lifecycle. Christos Petrou looks at a fairly diverse set of ‘megajournals’ at different stages of their development.


The OpenSAFELY collaboration in the UK has studied factors associated with COVID-19-related hospital death in the linked electronic health records of 17 million adult NHS patients. Impressive to see the power of having centralized, pseudonymous patient-level data in the NHS for such studies. This is a non-peer reviewed preprint posted on medRxiv and should not guide clinical practice. 

Rapid COVID-19 vaccine development. A perspective in Science by Barney S. Graham from NIH discusses the potential risks for vaccine development, and how to avoid safety pitfalls that could hamper the fast development of a vaccine.

Antibody-based therapies for COVID-19: Can Europe move faster? In a comment in PLOS Medicine Kazatchkine, Goldman, and Vincent call for stronger European efforts to develop COVID-19 therapies based on antibodies from survivors.


PLOS Pathogens & PREreview Live COVID-19 Preprint Journal Club. This live manuscript review by experts is happening today at 9am PST / 12pm EST / 5pm BST / 6pm CEST.


‘Finally, a virus got me.’ Scientist who fought Ebola and HIV reflects on facing death from COVID-19. An interview with Peter Piot, who co-discovered the Ebola virus. Noteworthy also for his thoughts on the fact that without vaccine we will not live normally again as the consequences otherwise are too problematic.