Finding Cultural Holes: How Structure and Culture Diverge in Networks of Scholarly Communication | Sociological Science

Authors: Daril A. Vilhena, Jacob G. Foster,
Martin Rosvall, Jevin D. West, James Evans, Carl T. Bergstrom

Abstract: Divergent interests, expertise, and language form cultural barriers to communication. No formalism has been available to characterize these “cultural holes.” Here we use information theory to measure cultural holes and demonstrate our formalism in the context of scientific communication using papers from JSTOR. We extract scientific fields from the structure of citation flows and infer field-specific cultures by cataloging phrase frequencies in full text and measuring the relative efficiency of between-field communication. We then combine citation and cultural information in a novel topographic map of science, mapping citations to geographic distance and cultural holes to topography. By analyzing the full citation network, we find that communicative efficiency decays with citation distance in a field-specific way. These decay rates reveal hidden patterns of cohesion and fragmentation. For example, the ecological sciences are balkanized by jargon, whereas the social sciences are relatively integrated. Our results highlight the importance of enriching structural analyses with cultural data.

Citation: Vilhena, D., Foster, J., Rosvall, M., West, J., Evans, J., & Bergstrom, C. (2014). Finding Cultural Holes: How Structure and Culture Diverge in Networks of Scholarly Communication. Sociological Science, 1, 221-238. doi:10.15195/v1.a15

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Source: Finding Cultural Holes: How Structure and Culture Diverge in Networks of Scholarly Communication | Sociological Science

The Open Access Movement and Activism for the “Knowledge Commons”

Author: Jackie Smith

Abstract: Over the last 25 years, the publication industry has seen a more than 70 percent growth in its scholarly content. Yet today, far fewer companies control the bulk of publication. By continuing to publish in traditional ways, sociologists are participating in the enclosure of the knowledge commons, whether we intend to or not. As the American Sociological Association begins its own OA journal, members need to be informed about the issues at stake. Many scholars may be attracted to the ideas and values behind OA. Yet, this means a fundamental re-thinking of the publishing industry and groups like the American Sociology Association that rely on revenues from publishing.

Citation: Smith, Jackie. (2014) “The Open Access Movement and Activism for the Knowledge Commons.” American Sociological Association Footnotes, May/June 2014.

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All That Glisters: Investigating Collective Funding Mechanisms for Gold Open Access in Humanities Disciplines

Martin Paul Eve

Abstract: This article sets out the economic problems faced by the humanities disciplines in the transition to gold open access and outlines the bases for investigations of collective funding models. Beginning with a series of four problems, it then details the key players in this field and their various approaches to collective “procurement” mechanisms. DESCRIPTION OF PROJECT: The Open Library of Humanities seeks to instigate a collective funding model for an open access megajournal and multijournal system that should enable for a phased transition to a gold open access model that does not require author-facing article processing charges. Libraries who participate then have a governance stake in the platform. NEXT STEPS: The project is currently working towards sustainability and launch. Authors’ pledged papers are being called in and libraries are signing up to the model.

Eve, M.P., (2014). All That Glisters: Investigating Collective Funding Mechanisms for Gold Open Access in Humanities Disciplines. Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication. 2(3), p.eP1131. DOI: http://doi.org/10.7710/2162-3309.1131

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Source: All That Glisters: Investigating Collective Funding Mechanisms for Gold Open Access in Humanities Disciplines

The role of handbooks in knowledge creation and diffusion: A case of science and technology studies

Authors: Staša Milojević, Cassidy R. Sugimoto, Vincent Larivière, Mike Thelwall, Ying Ding

Abstract: Genre is considered to be an important element in scholarly communication and in the practice of scientific disciplines. However, scientometric studies have typically focused on a single genre, the journal article. The goal of this study is to understand the role that handbooks play in knowledge creation and diffusion and their relationship with the genre of journal articles, particularly in highly interdisciplinary and emergent social science and humanities disciplines. To shed light on these questions we focused on handbooks and journal articles published over the last four decades belonging to the research area of Science and Technology Studies (STS), broadly defined. To get a detailed picture we used the full-text of five handbooks (500,000 words) and a well-defined set of 11,700 STS articles. We confirmed the methodological split of STS into qualitative and quantitative (scientometric) approaches. Even when the two traditions explore similar topics (e.g., science and gender) they approach them from different starting points. The change in cognitive foci in both handbooks and articles partially reflects the changing trends in STS research, often driven by technology. Using text similarity measures we found that, in the case of STS, handbooks play no special role in either focusing the research efforts or marking their decline. In general, they do not represent the summaries of research directions that have emerged since the previous edition of the handbook.

Citation: Staša Milojević, Cassidy R. Sugimoto, Vincent Larivière, Mike Thelwall, Ying Ding. (2014). The role of handbooks in knowledge creation and diffusion: A case of science and technology studies. arxiv

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Tweets as impact indicators: Examining the implications of automated bot accounts on Twitter

Authors: Stefanie Haustein, Timothy D. Bowman, Kim Holmberg, Andrew Tsou, Cassidy R. Sugimoto, Vincent Larivière

Abstract: This brief communication presents preliminary findings on automated Twitter accounts distributing links to scientific papers deposited on the preprint repository arXiv. It discusses the implication of the presence of such bots from the perspective of social media metrics (altmetrics), where mentions of scholarly documents on Twitter have been suggested as a means of measuring impact that is both broader and timelier than citations. We present preliminary findings that automated Twitter accounts create a considerable amount of tweets to scientific papers and that they behave differently than common social bots, which has critical implications for the use of raw tweet counts in research evaluation and assessment. We discuss some definitions of Twitter cyborgs and bots in scholarly communication and propose differentiating between different levels of engagement from tweeting only bibliographic information to discussing or commenting on the content of a paper.

Citation: Stefanie Haustein, Timothy D. Bowman, Kim Holmberg, Andrew Tsou, Cassidy R. Sugimoto, Vincent Larivière. (2014). Tweets as impact indicators: Examining the implications of automated bot accounts on Twitter. arXiv

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Academic Librarians as Knowledge Creators

Author: Donna Witek

Abstract: Despite support from national organizations like the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), pursuing research and scholarship remains a challenge for academic librarians, even when the literature connects these activities to greater effectiveness in the practice of academic librarianship. This essay examines the history and present state of the questions of faculty status and tenure for librarians, and relates these questions to that of performing scholarly research and creating and disseminating new knowledge as an academic librarian. It then offers as a case study my experience identifying and pursuing a research agenda in collaboration with a faculty colleague in another department at my institution, with the goal of both sharing what has worked for one academic librarian (n=1) while also critiquing the system within which that success has occurred. The essay concludes with a list of creative strategies academic librarians can put into practice to become successful knowledge creators in the field of library and information science.

Witek D. (2014). Academic Librarians as Knowledge Creators. The Journal of Creative Library Practice.

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Much Obliged: Analyzing the Importance and Impact of Acknowledgements in Scholarly Communication

Author(s): Finnell, Joshua

Abstract: Author rights, peer review, open access, and the role of institutional repositories have all come under scrutiny by scholars, librarians, and legal experts in the last decade. Much of the conversation is centered on liberating information from the confinements of legal, financial, and hierarchical restraints. The relevancy of traditional citation analysis too, understood within the framework of an h-Index and Eigen factor, is under scrutiny with the rise of altmetrics. Collectively, these issues form the core of the scholarly communication process, from creation to dissemination to impact. However, an overlooked facet of the scholarly communication process is the acknowledgement. As an expression of scholarly debt, the acknowledgment is an important facet of intellectual networks. Not only does the acknowledgement demonstrate the intellectual contributions of colleagues, advisors, funding agencies, and mentors but also the significance of librarians in the scholarly communication process.

Citation: Finnell, J. (2014). Much Obliged: Analyzing the Importance and Impact of Acknowledgements in Scholarly Communication. Library Philosophy & Practice (e-journal). http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/libphilprac/1229/

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