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Friday, December 12, 2008

ASIS&T survey of authors who have published in OA journals

Margeaux Johnson and Nancy K. Roderer, ASIS&T Scholarly Communication Survey: Open Access Authors, ASIS&T Bulletin, October/November 2008.  Excerpt:

...In 2008 the Journal of the American Society for Information Science & Technology (JASIST) became a green-road open access journal. Under this policy authors publishing in JASIST may post preprints to their own websites or their institution’s repositories with links to the final article and to the online journal.

Prior to this decision the ASIS&T Board of Directors developed a survey to explore how this new policy would affect readership, submissions and subscriptions. The survey was targeted toward ASIS&T members, JASIST authors and researchers publishing in the field of information science (seen as potential JASIST authors)....For a detailed description of the survey and overall survey results, please refer to the ASIS&T Scholarly Communication Survey. For a look at the survey results as they apply to ASIS&T members specifically, please see the ASIS&T Membership Survey 2008: Responses from ASIS&T Members.

Among survey respondents, there was an overwhelmingly high level of awareness of open access (OA). Almost all (95.7% of participants) knew about open access journals and 60.4% indicated that they knew “a lot” or “quite a lot.” Among ASIS&T members there was even a higher level of awareness, with 96.3% responding that they knew about OA. Despite the high level of awareness, only 26% of ASIS&T members reported having ever published in an open access journal. This figure was slightly higher, 29.4%, among all respondents. This paper will examine the survey responses of the 29.4% (N=171) authors who have published in OA journals....


Who are the authors participating in open access?
Authors who have published in OA journals differ from the larger survey population in three ways – geographically they are more international, professionally they are more likely to work for a college or university and they are more likely to have more years of research experience.

What are the greater publication trends among open access authors?
OA authors have higher publication rates than the larger survey population and a higher number of publications in their careers. Nearly 93% submit articles to peer-reviewed journals. However, when considering which journals to submit manuscripts to, OA authors have similar preferences to the general survey respondents. They also tend to consider the same factors in deciding where to submit.

What level of access do open access authors have to journal literature?
Overall, there is “good” or “excellent” access to journals among the group we surveyed. There is a noted preference for electronic access to journals among OA authors.

Do their attitudes toward open access differ from general survey respondents or ASIST members?
No. Overall there is a relatively positive attitude toward the concept of open access, particularly green road open access. Authors indicated an interest in archiving their scholarly works in institutional repositories.