The Valuation Theory Home Page
Bibliometry, open access journals, article processing charges

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:

fvk [at]

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.

NEW! The Life of Professor Underdog NEW!

And here is a gripping account of what many of us know so well in these modern times.



San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA)
Official web site.
Please consider signing!

Wikipedia article about DORA

Article about DORA

Elsevier Boycott

The cost of knowledge
Official web site.
Please consider signing!

The cost of knowledge
Statement by 34 mathematicians.

Timothy Gowers' blog post

Mathematicians Organize Boycott of a Publisher
Article in the New York Times.

Mathematicians Take a Stand
by Douglas N. Arnold and Henry Cohn
(paper on arXiv)

Scam and fraud in open access and other journals

Journal Accepts Paper Reading "Get Me Off Your Fucking Mailing List"

Mathgen paper accepted!
Randomly-generated paper accepted in Advances in Pure Mathematics.

Scholarly Open Access
Critical analysis of scholarly open-access publishing.

Potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access publishers
("Beall's List")

Potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access standalone journals

Predatory publishers are corrupting open access
Article in Nature.

Who's Afraid of Peer Review?
Wikipedia article on peer review in open access journals.

Hundreds of open access journals accept fake science paper
Article in The Guardian.

Open access publishing hoax: what Science magazine got wrong
Article in The Guardian that criticises the findings of the previous article and discusses alternatives to article processing charges.

157 Peer Reviews Fail to Catch Fake Cancer Study

it is NOT junk
Blog article by Michael Eisen, author of the "Arsenic DNA" paper.

John Bohannon's peer-review sting against Science
This has lots of links to responses to the Science story.

Scientific Articles Accepted (Personal Checks, Too)
Article in the New York Times on scam conferences and open access.

What pushes scientists to lie? The disturbing but familiar story of Haruko Obokata
Article in The Guardian. Citation from the article:

"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."

European Mathematical Society

EMS Paper on Open Access

Joan Elias, Rui Loja Fernandez, Timothy Gowers, Pierangelo Marcati, Tomaz Pisanski, and B. Teissier:
A basis for discussion on a position of the EMS on Open Access
Prepared by the Publications Committee of the EMS.

EMS committee on Publications

Documents in French

French Academy of Sciences

La politique de l'excellence en recherche

Document in Polish

Pulapki oceny parametrycznej stosowanej przez MNiSW
Article on abuse of impact factors: "Traps of the parametrical evaluation used by the ministry of Science and Higher Education" (Poland)

Texts by Bernard Teissier

Contribution to the round table on research
Organised in Granada by the Real Sociedad Matemática Española.

A charter for sustainable journal publishing
Workshop on Mathematics Journals, MSRI, Berkeley February 14-16, 2011.

Recommendation on the evaluation of individual researchers in the mathematical sciences
endorsed by the IMU General Assembly on August 11, 2014.

On bibliometry and open access journals with article processing charges
text by F. V. Kuhlmann

An open access journal for Valuation Theory?

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."

Franz-Viktor Kuhlmann

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Last update: January 23, 2019 --------- created and maintained by Franz-Viktor Kuhlmann