This page is meant to trigger and support discussion about the use and abuse of bibliometry, open access journals and article processing charges. The readers are encouraged to provide statements and/or links to other interesting web sites or documents. Please send contributions to:
A Polish blogger calling himself "Lolek" has compared Polish academical researchers with dogs who have to leave their scent mark on as many trees as possible to increase the glory of their supreme master, the Ministry of higher Education. Here is a little satire inspired by this wonderful comparison.
And here is a gripping account of what many of us know so well in these modern times.
"But before we start to congratulate ourselves on the ever-upwards path of science, we should bear in mind that most experiments are never reproduced. There are simply too many of them. Besides which, researchers often don't have much interest in repeating the work of others. Scientists may be truth-seekers, but they generally prefer new truths. They want to be the first to make a discovery. That's where all the glory lies; that's how to get a name for yourself, attract more funding and advance your career. Confirming - or failing to confirm - someone else's discovery is unlikely to get you very far. It's unlikely to even get you into print since science journals tend to favour novel research.
Not only are most experiments not reproduced, most are probably not reproducible. This statement will shock only those who have never worked in a wet lab. Those who have will already suspect as much."
In 2014 I was contacted by DeGruyter and was asked whether I would like to become the editor of a new open access journal for Valuation Theory. After some consideration, I declined. Here are some excerpts from my letter to DeGruyter:
"I have been in contact with several members of the valuation theory community, of all age groups, have listened to their opinions, and have had some detailed discussions.
I must say that the offer to become the editor of a new journal flattered me, and it was tempting because for one, it looks good on my CV, and on the other hand, I like to promote valuation theory, as I have already done with the Valuation Theory Home Page and by editing conference proceedings. However, I have come to the decision that I have to turn down your offer. This is not only a personal matter: I would like to give you the strong advice not to start a journal devoted to valuation theory as it would not be accepted and supported by the valuation theory community.
Personally I do not know of any good paper in valuation theory that has been published with open access. The feedback I received showed that most members of our community either squarely reject journals that after some years will introduce article processing fees, or do not have the financial support to pay such fees.
But even if the journal would not be open access and would not ask for article processing fees, it would run into problems. [...] Our experience was, and still is, that good papers in valuation theory were and are frequently published in highly reputed classical non-specialized journals, and that in fact the breadth of valuation theory and its applications supported this way of publishing. [...] What I clearly heard from the people I have been in contact with is that they are reluctant to change this approach and to publish in a new, specialized journal. Many are uncomfortable with new journals that still have to build their reputation while they have access to well-reputed long-standing journals which are much better for their CVs.
The danger would therefore be that the journal would lack submissions, in particular after the first two years [without article processing charges] are over, and that the majority of the submissions would be low quality from certain communities that have plenty of money but not the good researchers. Such a development would neither be good for valuation theory, nor for DeGruyter. A similar development has been seen with other new open access journals. Some of them kept the number of articles up by reducing the rigidity of the refereeing process. But that would be unacceptable for me and the valuation theory community.
I hope this information is helpful for DeGruyter to make the right decisions. As I indicated already, it is with deep regret that I have to turn down your offer. But I am convinced that this is the only right thing to do for valuation theory, for myself and for any high quality publishing house."
Last update: January 23, 2019 --------- created and maintained by Franz-Viktor Kuhlmann