Mixing and Matching the Green and Gold Roads to Open Access—Take 2

Guédon, Jean-Claude Mixing and Matching the Green and Gold Roads to Open Access—Take 2. Serials Review, 2008, vol. 34, pp. 41-51. [Journal article (Paginated)]

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English abstract

Three years ago, the Gold and Green Roads to Open Access were viewed as complementary strategies, with repositories having the potential of gradually behaving more like journals, and vice versa. Since then, repositories and journals have been progressing on parallel tracks. Re-examining the situation, the reasoning suggested in 2004 appears still valid. Simultaneously, a knowledge economy has made of science a strategic resource. The developing world is essentially invited to contribute to world science with little or no regard to the development of an autonomous scientific capacity. Open Access, in this context, takes a new meaning with one objective to help development of local and autonomous scientific capacity. However, to do so, mixing and matching repositories with journals is needed. Brazil exemplifies this type of development and shows how the Green and Gold roads can mix and match.

Item type: Journal article (Paginated)
Keywords: open access; open access publishing; open access archiving; green road; gold road
Subjects: B. Information use and sociology of information
B. Information use and sociology of information > BG. Information dissemination and diffusion.
Depositing user: E-LIS Canadian Staff
Date deposited: 26 Jun 2008
Last modified: 02 Oct 2014 12:11
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10760/11791

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1. Serials Review, Vol. 30 No. 4 (2004). I want to thank my wife,

Frances K. Groen, for having helped me write this article in legible

English, and for some precious suggestions.

2. See http://www.soros.org/openaccess/read.shtml.

3. See http: / / www. openarchi ves. org/ OAI/ openarchi vesprotocol .


4. John Willinsky, The Access Principle: The Case for Open Access

to Research and Scholarship (Digital Libraries and Electronic

Publishing) (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005).

5. See, for example, Robert K. Merton, On Social Structure and

Science, ed. Piotr Sztompa (Chicago: University of Chicago Press,


6. Pierre Bourdieu, “La spécificité du champ scientifique et les

conditions sociales du progrèes de la raison,” Sociologie et

Sociétés 7, no. 1 (1975): 91-118.

7. This famous aphorism, generally translated by “knowledge is

power,” is found in Meditationes Sacrae (1597).

8. One way to approach this question is to look at the national

distributions of top gatekeepers in science publications. Some

results have been coming out of the work conducted by

Tibor Braun and his collaborators since the 1980s. See a

summary of his main results in Tibor Braun, “Keeping the

gates of Science Journals” in Handbook of Quantitative

Science and Technology Research, Henk Moed, Wolfgang

Chenzel, and Ulrich Schmoch, eds. (Dordrecht: Kluwer Aca-

demic Publishers, 2004), 95–114. On a distinct, but related,

question, see Manfred Bonitz, “Ten Years [of] Matthew Effect

for Countries,” Scientometrics 64, no. 3 (2005): 375–79.

9. The example of Harold Varmus immediately comes to mind.

10. See Sverker Sörlin and Hebe Vessuri, “Introduction: The

Democratic Deficit of Knowledge Economies,” in Knowledge

Society vs. Knowledge Economy (London: Palgrave MacMillan,

2007), pp. 2–32.

11. See on this Derek J. de Solla Price, Little Science, Big Science (New

York, Columbia University Press, 1963).

12. See http://www.amsci-forum.amsci.org/archives/American- Scientist-Open-Access-Forum.html.

13. Michael Mabe, “The Growth and Number of Journals,” Serials

Vol. 16, No 2 (July 2003), 191–7. Mabe claims that Derek de

Solla Price had estimated there would be a million titles at the end

of the twentieth century but this refers only to a linear

extrapolation of a growth curve found in Derek J. de Solla Price,

Little Science, Big Science (New York, Columbia University Press,

1963). Price cautiously does comments that stricter definitions of

scientific publications could shift numbers by one order of

magnitude, thus potentially bringing that number down to

100,000 titles.

14. Jack Meadows, Communicating Research (San Diego: Academic

Press, 1998), p. 15.

15. Derek de S. Price, op. cit. (note 2), p. 8 and accompanying graph

on p. 9.

16. However, to go back to Price’s word of caution (see note 2), a

stricter definition leading to a result one order of magnitude lower

would yield the 24,000 figure often used in OA debates.

17. Eugene Garfield, Citation Indexing. Its Theory and Application in

Science, Technology, and Humanities (New York, John Wiley &

Sons, 1979), 20. In January of 2004, Eugene Garfield suggested

the number of scientific journals in the world would probably

stand somewhere between ten and fifteen thousand titles. See


18. John P.A. Ioannidis, “Concentration of the Most-Cited Papers in

the Scientific Literature: Analysis of Journal Ecosystems”, PLoS

ONE 1.1 (2006), http://www.dx.doi.org/10.1371%2Fjournal.

pone.0000005 (accessed December 13th 2007).

19. In Ulrich’s is, for Michael Mabe, a condition to be a “learned

journal.” Mabe, op. cit. (note 13), 192.

20. Ulrich’s FAQ specifies that “Ulrich’s Serials Analysis System is

designed for password-protected use by library professionals only,

and is not a patron-interface product.” See http://www.ulrichsweb.

com/ulrichsweb/usasfaq.asp (accessed December 13, 2007).

21. The conflation of academic and trade journals is a little puzzling

given the attachment of scientists and scholars to peer review and

their desire to separate research papers from other publications

as precisely and neatly as possible. Responding to this need,

Open J-Gate.

22. Jean-Claude Guédon “In Oldenburg’s Long Shadow: Librarians,

Research Scientists, Publishers, and the Control of Scientific

Publishing,” http://www.arl.org/resources/pubs/mmproceedings/


23. Scientific American, August 1995. The citation was pulled from

the Scientific American web site at http://www.sciamdigital.com/index.cfm?fa=Products.ViewIssuePreview&ARTICLEID_CHAR=082AA6E7- 13D1-4610-81F4-EEC68867A24. There

was a reply by the Science Citation Index in the form of a letter

to the Editor of ScienticLibrary.upenn.edu/papers/currscience.html#tref6.

24. D.J. Frame. “Problems in the Use of Literature-based S&T

Indicators in Developing Countries.” In: H. Morita-Lou, ed.

Science and Technology Indicators for Development. (Boulder,

CO: Westview, 1985). 117–22. The quotation is from The

Uncertain Quest: Science, Technology, and Development (Paris,

United Nations University Press, 1994), Jean-Jacques Salomon,

Francisco R. Sagasti, and Céline Sachs-Jeantet and is available

on-line at: http://www.unu.edu/unupress/unupbooks/uu09ue/

uu09ue0m.htm. According to S. Arunachalam who attended

the ISI meeting, it took place in 1982 and not in 1985.

Personal communication from S. Arunachalam, November 4th,


25. M. Callaham, R.I. Wears and E. Weber, “Journal Prestige,

Publication Bias, and Other Characteristics Associated with

Citation of Published Studies in Peer-Reviewed Journals,”

JAMA 287, no. 21 (June 5, 2002): 2849. Some studies disagree

with this conclusion, for example, Bhandari M, Busse J,

Devereaux PJ, et al., “Factors Associated with Citation Rates in

the Orthopedic Literature,” Canadian Journal of Surgery, Vol. 50

No. 2 (April 2007), 119–23.

26. Ironically, BIOSIS is now part of Thomson Scientific, which owns


27. S. Arunachal am and K. Manorama, “Are Citation-Based

Quantitative Techniques Adequate for Measuring Science on

the Periphery?” Scientometrics 15 (5–6) (1989): 394.

28. One of the more candid arguments in favor of truncating the list

of journals is “cost effectiveness” as Garfield explains: “The

cost-effective objective of an index is to minimize the cost per

useful item identified and to maximize the probability of finding

any useful item that has been published.... A cost-effective index

must restrict its coverage, as nearly as possible, to only those

items that people are likely to find useful.” E. Garfield, op. cit.

(note 17), p. 20.

29. See http://www.topuniversities.com/worlduniversityrankings/

university_rankings_news/article/why_scopus/. In passing, the

figure of 15,000 titles fits nicely with the results announced by

Michael Mabe in the article cited earlier (see note 13). Although

Michael Mabe was working for Elsevier when he wrote this

article and Scopus is an Elsevier product, the coincidence may be

just the result of some pre-established harmony.

30. Eugene Garfield briefly recounts his problems with Maxwell in an

interview by Robert V. Williams in July 1997. See http://www.

garfield.library.upenn.edu/papers/history/heritagey1998.html and



31. See Steven Shapin, A Social History of Truth, Civility and Science

in Seventeenth-Century England (Chicago: University of Chicago

Press, 1995), passim.

32. See note 23.

33. There is an even more perverse situation that has been

described to me by S. Arunachalam. The late Sambhu Nath

De, a cholera investigator based in Calcutta who died in 1985,

was nominated several times for the Nobel Prize by no less

than Joshuah Lederberg. However, in his own country, he was

not even nomi ated a fellow of any Indian academy.

Presumably, cholera was too close to local preoccupations to

qualify as a prestigious topic in India and it was too exotic a

topic to form the basis for a “universalistic” Nobel Prize. Sic

transit gloria mundi.

34. In the United States and in Europe, an “orphan disease” is a rare

disease and this means that it touches fewer than 200,000 people.

See http://www.rarediseases.info.nih.gov/asp/diseases/diseases.

asp. However, the logic is the same as for the poor countries:

The relatively small number of patients does not create a sufficient

market to stimulate the interest of pharmaceutical companies.

Governments, however, may be moved to doing some research for

such diseases.

35. It is interesting to see that a journal specifically devoted to

neglected tropical diseases has recently been launched by the

Public Library of Science, which is to say in Open Access: http:// www.plosntds.org/home.action.

36. F. Spagnolo, “Brazilian Scientists’ Publications and Mainstream

Science: Some Policy Implications”, Scientometrics 18 (3–4)

(1990): 205–218.

37. Tibor Braun and Ildikó Dióspatonyi, “The Counting of Core

Journal Gatekeepers as Science Indicators Really Counts. The

Scientific Scope of Action and Strength of Nations,” Sciento-

metrics 62 (3) (2005): 297–319.

38. Tibor Braun, op. cit. (note 8), p. 109.

39. Manfred Bonitz, op. cit. (note 8). The author simply documents

the fact that, in general, citations received stand below the

expected level but for a minority of countries, the reverse is true.

Coupling Bonitz’ observation with Braun’s remarks about the

distribution of gatekeepers should bring us closer to an etiology of

the phenomenon.

40. Abel L. Packer and Rogerio Meneghini, “Learning to Commu-

nicate Science in Developing Countries,” Interciencia 32, no. 9

(September 2007): 643–47. The whole SciELO project now

present in about ten countries, including Spain and Portugal in

Europe, is a concerted effort to move beyond the obstacles

inhibiting the development of autonomous scientific capability

in developing countries. See below for more on SciELO.

41. E. Garfield, “Mapping Science in the Third World,” Science and

Public Policy (June 1983): 112–27, in particular p. 114.

42. This means “failure to earn.” It is a calculation that works on

hypothetical grounds: Had the following been true, I would have

benefited by so much. Given that I did not earn as much, I failed to

earn something. This something is the manque à gagner.

43. To write this article, I have had to read a number of articles

from the journal Scientometrics. The language of some of the

articles is simply atrocious, even to a non-native English speaker

like myself, which shows that the editorial input is essentially

absent. Likewise, the extremely costly volume cited in note 8

and published by Kluwer incorporates articles written in

unacceptable English. In short, the claim for “added value”

through editing often appears vacuous not to say more. On this

topic, see also http://www.mx2.arl.org/Lists/SPARC-OAForum/


44. See http://www.taxpayeraccess.org/.

45. See http://www.listserver.sigmaxi.org/sc/wa.exe?A2=ind04&L=


46. See http://www.scielo.org/index.php?lang=en.

47. On the Chinese Science Citation Index, see Loet Leydesdorff and

Jin Bihul, “Mapping the Chinese Science Citation Database in

Terms of Aggregated Journal-Journal Citation Relations,”

Journal of the American Society for Information Science and

Technology 56, no. 14 (2005): 1469–79.

48. For the “Open Journal System,” itself part of the Public

Knowledge Project (PKP), see http://pkp.sfu.ca/?q=ojs.

49. See Abel L. Packer, “The SciELO Model for Electronic Publishing

and Measuring of Usage and Impact of Latin American and

Caribbean Scientific Journals,” available in Google Scholar at the

following URL: http://www.scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=fr&client=firefoxa&rls=com.ubuntu:fr:of ficial&hs=6NV&q=author:%22Packer%22+intitle:%22The+SciELO+Model+for +electronic+publ ishing+and+measuring+...%22+&um=1&ie= UTF-8&oi=scholarr.

50. See http://blogdokura.blogspot.com/ or, for a slightly different

presentation, http://kuramoto.wordpress.com/. Helio Kuramoto

has been a very active force behind this law. He has organized a

petition in favor of this law: http://www.petitiononline.com/



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