How-to-advocacy: OPERAS practical guide on advocating for open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities, Version 1 (2021)

OPERAS Advocacy White Paper (2018)

Cite this article as: Elisabeth Ernst, Aysa Ekanger, Mateusz Franczak, Iraklis Katsaloulis, Marlen Töpfer, Magdalena Wnuk. (2021, June 30). “How-to-advocacy: OPERAS practical guide on advocating for open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities”, June 30, 2018, https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.5043438.

DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.5043438

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CONTENTS

  1. Introduction
    1. About this guide
    2. Definition of Open Science and Open Access
    3. Scope of advocacy
    4. Stakeholders and target audiences
  2. Researchers’ needs related to Open Access publishing
    1. Methodology and survey questionnaire
    2. Outcomes
    3. Results and recommendations
  3. Recommendations for national audiences: Germany as a case study
    1. Tasks of national nodes
    2. Strategy and implementation
      1. Analysis of the national landscape
      2. Definition of your own position
      3. Increasing awareness
      4. Networking
      5. Collection of needs
  4. Recommendations on advocacy actions for the social sciences and humanities
    1. Advocacy for the social sciences and humanities
    2. Challenges
    3. Advocacy actions
      1. Academic and research institutions
      2. E-Infrastructures and Research Infrastructures
      3. Researchers
      4. Policy makers
      5. Funders
  5. Conclusion
  6. About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG
  7. Acknowledgments
  8. List of Acronyms and Abbreviations
  9. References

Introduction

About this guide

This guide is intended for all stakeholders actively involved in open scholarly communication activities in the social sciences and humanities, particularly for members of the OPERAS (Open scholarly communication in the European Research Area for social sciences and humanities) Research Infrastructure1 and stakeholders interested in Open Access and Open Science topics for these disciplines. This includes, among others, publishers, publication platforms, libraries, and infrastructure providers.

This practical guide starts by defining Open Science and Open Access, as well as advocacy, and presenting the main target groups and stakeholders. It then presents some recommendations for addressing researchers’ needs related to Open Access publishing. The document then outlines some suggestions for national audiences, presenting the case study of the German national node (OPERAS-GER) for OPERAS. Finally, it describes the topic of advocacy for the social sciences and humanities, drawing on the conclusions of a panel discussion at the 2020 OPERAS conference. 

This document has been prepared by the OPERAS Advocacy Special Interest Group (SIG). It is an updated and complementary version of the “Advocacy Guide” which the Advocacy SIG published on 27 October 20202 as part of the project OPERAS-P (Preparing open access in the European research area through scholarly communication)3 .

This document uses the results of a White Paper that the OPERAS Advocacy SIG published in 20184 to present some updates and to involve the OPERAS community in the ongoing task of advocating for the social sciences and humanities and open scholarly communication within these disciplines. While the 2018 White Paper ultimately focused on advocacy targeting researchers at different career stages, this guide widens the scope to include policy- and decision-makers, both at a national and European level.

For more information about the Advocacy SIG and the project OPERAS-P, in the context of which this document was written, see ch. VI “About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG”.

Definition of Open Science and Open Access

The OPERAS Advocacy SIG follows the OPERAS definitions of Open Science and Open Access5 , where Open Science6 is defined as:

  • Transparency in experimental methodology, observation, and collection of data
  • Public availability and reusability of scientific data
  • Public accessibility and transparency of scientific communication
  • Using web-based tools to facilitate scientific collaboration

and Open Access7 is defined as:

  • Free access to scientific publications with reuse allowed by the license attached to the publication.

We acknowledge that Open Science is a process, attitude and approach, rather than a final goal.

Scope of advocacy

The term “advocacy” is often used to describe an activity or process of “supporting a cause or proposal”8 and especially gaining “public support”9 for this activity or idea. The activity can be carried out either by an individual or group. Organizations describing their advocacy activities most commonly use the term to show how they create central positions and use them to influence positions of political, public or economic institutions, e.g. the bodies of the European Union. This process often takes place by including a broader public community, both from within the organizations and from without. The advocacy process often works in two directions: organizations include public opinion in their creation of central positions and strive to influence public opinion at the same time.

The definitions of “lobbying” are much clearer than those for “advocacy”. The term is usually used to describe “activities aimed at influencing public officials and especially members of a legislative body on legislation”10. It is thus a form of advocacy that concentrates on approaching legislators directly.

The scope of the OPERAS Advocacy SIG encompasses all types of directed activities supporting its vision and mission and which are in line with its code of conduct.11

OPERAS’ vision is to make Open Science a reality for research in the social sciences and humanities; to achieve a scholarly communication system where knowledge produced in the social sciences and the humanities benefits researchers, academics, students and more generally society as a whole, across Europe and worldwide, without barriers. 

OPERAS’ mission is to coordinate and federate resources in Europe to efficiently address the scholarly communication needs of European researchers in the field of social sciences and humanities.

A special focus lies on gaining support from stakeholders and target audiences as described below, as well as from a broader public. The Advocacy SIG, together with the OPERAS Coordination Team, strives to coordinate community central positions for the OPERAS Research Infrastructure and to ensure that the broader OPERAS community is involved in this process. The Advocacy SIG has a strong focus on empowering communities to influence decision-making processes.

Fig. 1: The scope of communication, advocacy, and lobbying. Created by Elisabeth Ernst and Marlen Töpfer. CC BY 4.0.

Stakeholders and target audiences

The Advocacy SIG draws on the results of the internal deliverable “Landscape study on scholarly needs and stakeholders in social sciences and humanities” of the OPERAS-P project for a definition of its main stakeholders and target audiences. The deliverable defines the main categories of stakeholders in social sciences and humanities scholarly communication as:

  • service providers (publishers, dissemination platforms, repositories and other digital tools and services providers)
  • policy makers    
  • e-Infrastructures and research infrastructures 
  • funders
  • academic and research Institutions

The following is a short overview of the stakeholders and target audiences as defined in the deliverable from the point of view of the Advocacy SIG.

Service Providers, including publishers, enable and facilitate the creation, circulation and discovery of social sciences and humanities scholarly content, usually having a national or regional reach. Thus, their networking and cooperation could contribute to greater efficiency, visibility, standardization and interoperability. Many Open Access business models that e.g. publishers could rely on are still in the stage of formation. They thus often have a mixed business model, enabling them to cover costs from several sources of income. Service providers are an important target group of the Advocacy SIG because they make up the largest part of OPERAS members yet. Moreover, it is key to involve them in coordinating community central positions for the OPERAS Research Infrastructure because of their diversity and stronghold in the different communities.

Many policy makers, both on a national and the EU level, do have Open Access and/or Open Science policies. However, the Advocacy SIG targets policy makers who do not yet have strong policies nor provide support.

The national nodes of many research infrastructures (e.g. CESSDA—Consortium of European Social Science Data Archives, CLARIN—Common Language Resources and Technology Infrastructure, DARIAH—Digital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities, ESS—European Social Survey, SHARE—Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe, etc.) relevant for the social sciences and humanities disciplines are already well connected with OPERAS members. The Advocacy SIG seeks to ensure that the broader OPERAS community is involved. Therefore, it works closely with these existing research infrastructures. Similarly, e-infrastructures under the umbrella of the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) and the Social Sciences & Humanities Open Cloud (SSHOC), are included in these efforts.

The Advocacy SIG recognizes that social sciences and humanities research funding comes from various sources, i.e. from public and private funding, and international, national, regional or even local funding. Open Access policy adoption among private funders in particular could have a strong positive effect.

The uptake of Open Access mandates or policies among scholarly institutions is high in some countries and low in others. Scholarly institutions are thus a primary target group of the Advocacy SIG’s activities to include in coordinating community central positions for the OPERAS Research Infrastructure.

Researchers’ needs related to Open Access publishing

Methodology and survey questionnaire

The approach of the White Paper12 published by the Advocacy SIG in July 2018 was not to target researchers directly but rather guide other stakeholders to answer researchers’ concerns. This chapter is a continuation and update of this White Paper and this approach, and therefore it only targets researchers indirectly. We have gathered updates on how the situation has evolved since then. The results suggest concrete ideas on actions and projects that can be implemented by stakeholders in the OPERAS community, e.g. the OPERAS national nodes.

We conducted a survey that included questions on each of the topics addressed in the 2018 White Paper. The questions particularly targeted those areas where we needed more information or where we expected the situation to have changed. They were carefully selected to avoid receiving information we already had, including the information provided by other surveys/studies (e.g. the Open Access Diamond Journals study13). The survey was intentionally very short – with only four questions in total – to ensure a wide participation. We wanted to encourage participants to answer as detailed as possible, and therefore all questions had an open answer format. The survey was distributed among OPERAS partners and networks in June 2021, and included the following four questions:

1. What can be done to address some researchers’ concerns about the quality of Open Access publication venues?

Several studies have pointed to perceived journal quality as a barrier to Open Access publishing14, and although positive attitudes to Open Access have grown over time15, “quality” is still mentioned by researchers in discussions about Open Access. Some researchers – still, in 2021 – believe that Open Access publications overall tend to have lower quality, compared to toll access publications. What exactly one means by publication venue “quality”, varies. In the survey, we did not attempt to clarify our use of the concept “quality of Open Access publication venues” because we were interested in the consequence of the assumption of lower quality – researchers avoiding Open Access publication venues – regardless of the meaning applied by the respondent to the notion of quality. Our hope was also that the answers would reflect the variety of meanings of publication venue quality, which would yield a greater variety of proposed solutions for our stakeholders trying to address this issue.

2. Can you provide suggestions on how to make it a conventional practice to use licences that allow reuse and distribution of research results? (Examples of such licences are licences from Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/. Research results could be publications, data, images, texts.)

Licences that allow reuse and re-distribution of copyrighted material are an essential component of what makes this material openly accessible. There is, however, insufficient knowledge of copyright and licencing among researchers, who are accustomed to publishers handling their copyright. The heated discussions that took place in the scholarly community in connection with cOAlition S’ initially proposed requirement for a Creative Commons Attribution licence, demonstrated the range of researchers’ opinions about such licences, the various degrees of knowledge, and the fears. Partly due to these discussions, there is now more awareness of copyright and licencing issues in the scholarly community than three years ago, but open licencing still has a long way to go to become a natural part of scholarly research. We wanted to find out what various stakeholders can do (or are doing) to help researchers get used to open licencing in their research practices, which is addressed in question 2.

The question refers to “research results”, which, in addition to “formal”, edited, publications like books and journal articles, also includes more “informal” forms of publications like blog posts and preprints that have not been submitted for review (unpublished manuscripts). “Research results” also refers to research data, and although the survey is about Open Access publications, we decided to keep this general term in order not to rule out relevant suggestions – as supposedly more openness at the level of research data may result in more openness at the level of publications. In addition, in some social sciences and humanities disciplines the line between research data and publications is a fine one.

3. What can be done to help researchers more easily identify Open Access publishing options that are most relevant for them?

The last couple of years have seen some developments in the business models of Open Access publishing – in some countries, existing agreements with publishers have been substituted by or supplemented with consortial agreements which include not only fully Open Access journals, but also hybrid journals (Read-and-Publish agreements). This has, to varying degrees, changed the administrative workflows that researchers have been getting used to. Significant changes in funders’ Open Access requirements (such as Plan S) add to the complexity, and the consequence is that for some researchers it has become more challenging to understand what Open Access publishing options are available to them and what options they should go for. Researchers would benefit from an easy to navigate landscape of publishing possibilities and requirements, and question 3 sought to find out how to make this possible.

4. What informational resources and training would you like OPERAS to provide for you or your organization? (If you have any other suggestions on how OPERAS can help other stakeholders in the publishing landscape you are welcome to comment.)

The fourth question of the survey was not meant to target any concerns – it was included to gather advice from the different stakeholders on how OPERAS (and the Advocacy SIG in particular) could be useful to them, and also to inform the stakeholders not familiar with OPERAS about the existence of this research infrastructure.

Outcomes

The survey was distributed on the OPERAS social media channels and to the OPERAS Advocacy SIG members; additionally, OPERAS members were asked to share the survey with their national networks.

We received 42 answers from the following countries: Austria (2), Croatia (1), Germany (21), Netherlands (1), Norway (6), Portugal (1), Serbia (2), Sweden (1), Switzerland (4), UK (3).

When it comes to stakeholder groups, 12 of the respondents self-identified as researchers, there were no representatives of policy makers and funders, and the rest of the respondents were either representatives of one group, or different combinations of them. One stakeholder group that we did not pre-identify in the survey and that was filled in by one respondent, was “trainer”. 19 respondents self-identified as belonging to 2 or more stakeholder groups.

Results and recommendations

The following is a list of suggestions collected through the 42 completed surveys we received. The national distribution was quite uneven, and therefore the suggestions are to be taken not as general recommendations but rather as a collection of sentiments and individual thoughts. The lists do not indicate the number of respondents that support each suggestion, and they also do not differentiate how different stakeholder groups answered the questions. However, some of the suggested actions are directed toward specific stakeholder groups as agents. Other suggested actions are more general and the stakeholders can decide for themselves whether they are relevant for them.

1. What can be done to address some researchers’ concerns about the quality of Open Access publication venues?
  • Engage in conversations about quality as a concept. Quality is unrelated to the type of access, is tied to the intricacies of the academic publication system and is not reducible to metrics such as Journal Impact Factor. 
  • Inform researchers about various tools for selecting publication venues with good peer review, including whitelists/safelists, e.g. the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)16 and the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB)17, and initiatives like Think. Check. Submit18. Quality Open Access Market19 is a database where academic authors can rate Open Access journals’ peer review and editorial board.
  • Show researchers (especially the younger generations) that Open Access publications rely on the same quality standards and procedures as toll access publications. Furthermore, it is still necessary to provide information about the benefits of Open Access – for society, the scientific community and for one’s own work. Researchers should be informed about the logic behind pay-to-publish Open Access financing models, such as the article processing charge (APC) business model and read-and-publish agreements, as researchers in some social sciences and humanities disciplines associate pay-to-publish models with lower publication quality. It may be beneficial to involve researchers in the decision-making processes when deals are negotiated for subscription, Open Access and hybrid content – so that researchers can be informed about “the stakes and the costs” and have more data to reflect on the possible correlations between business models and publication quality. Alternative Open Access financing models must be developed: the “OA Diamond Journals Study” (see Findings20 report and Recommendations21 report) presented valuable insights about the landscape of Open Access journals that do not require payment from either readers or authors, and offered recommendations for the development of this highly heterogeneous part of the world’s publishing infrastructure. 
  • Open Access publication venues must:
    • be transparent about their peer review procedures and journal/article metrics;
    • be sustainable, as short-lived Open Access publications do not contribute to a good reputation of Open Access;
    • have good technical characteristics: adhere to metadata standards, run on user-friendly publication platforms.

On the whole, information work – providing researchers with information on the issues discussed above – is one of the key activities that the stakeholders need to engage in when addressing researchers’ concerns about the quality of Open Access publications. Information activities can take the form of websites, workshops and other types of meetings, leaflets, newsletters, social media campaigns. Meetings can be organized both within specific departments or research groups, and by inviting mixed groups into open dialogue. Heads of research institutes or research groups should be specifically informed, as they can influence the attitudes of their colleagues to a greater degree. Other “agents of change” can be researchers who are actively involved in Open Access and Open Science practices – and these researchers can receive training to become Open Access advocates.

2. Can you provide suggestions on how to make it a conventional practice to use licences that allow reuse and distribution of research results? (Examples of such licences are licences from Creative Commons, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/. Research results could be publications, data, images, texts.)
  • Provide training and courses (as early as possible), tailored to the practical needs of researchers and to their discipline, with better explanations and examples of freely licenced material from the relevant fields. Meet researchers where they are: e.g. courses on “Copyright 101” can be organized during discipline-specific conferences and research summer schools.
  • Engage in conversations about the concept of copyright, what motivates creators in general and academic authors in particular, copyright in the digital age, the reasoning behind open licencing.
  • Demonstrate the impact of free licenses on the visibility of the licensed material.
  • Provide support to researchers wishing to discuss licencing choices in person.
  • Display licensing icons wherever possible (websites, presentations) – the more researchers see the symbols, the more they become familiar with them and may eventually learn what they mean.
  • Inform about tools that make attribution easier: such as the Creative Commons License Chooser22 or the Open Attribution Builder23.
  • Academic institutions and funders can consider only openly available and adequately licenced publications for assessment related to academic positions and funding applications (probably this requirement should be applied to publications after a defined date).
  • Publishers, dissemination platforms and repositories can require that authors choose from a range of specified licences, when publishing/uploading content. (An example of an interdisciplinary network platform that does this is Humanities Commons24.) These content providers must also embed machine-readable licences in the publications or include licensing information in the metadata, so that it becomes easier to search for content by the type of licence. Publishers must be transparent about the re-use and redistribution conditions attached to published content, and provide authors with clear guidance on copyright and licence options.
  • Publishers should also advocate for the use of the FAIR Data Principles (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability, and Reuse), an example is Taylor & Francis’ Open and FAIR Data Sharing policy. 
  • Funders can require a (range of) specific licence(s) for publications resulting from the projects they fund  (for example the way it is done by cOAlition S funders). 
  • In academic assessment (e.g. in hiring and tenure track decisions, grant applications), funders and academic institutions can exclude publications which, after a defined date, were not published under a licence that grants certain re-use rights.
  • Academic institutions can adopt rights retention policies. A type 1 policy described in the “Good practices for open-access policies”25 grants the institution certain non-exclusive rights (among them, self-archiving) to future research articles of the institution’s academic employees, and offers authors an option to opt-out from that licence.
  • If a copyright amendment that secures the authors’ right to self-archive is in place, inform researchers about this amendment; e.g. the Taverne amendment in the Netherlands grants the author of any short scientific work, fully or partially financed by Dutch public funds, the right to self-archive after a reasonable embargo. If no such copyright amendment exists in a given jurisdiction, work towards it. LIBER26 (Association of European Research Libraries) has proposed a model law that is meant to “ensure a zero embargo period for lawful self-archiving on open, public, non-for-profit repositories”27.
3. What can be done to help researchers more easily identify Open Access publishing options that are most relevant for them?
  • Research institutions should provide information on Open Access publishing options available to researchers at those institutions, and be proactive in getting in touch with researchers – research groups and disciplinary communities should be targeted by these information activities or involved in them. It should also be possible for a researcher to receive one-to-one support.
  • Researchers need to know about indexing databases and registries such as DOAB, OAPEN28, DOAJ, Registry of Research Data Repositories29, Registry of Open Access Repositories30
    ]
    , Sherpa Romeo31 – an institution’s administrative/library staff should provide training (workshops, lectures, webinars). The academic publication system and publishing options must be a topic in obligatory courses at Master’s/doctoral level. When informing researchers about the existing options, include general information about the services and technical characteristics that should be expected from a publication venue.
  • Interactive solutions for exploring publishing options should be considered, where researchers can filter the options according to their needs. Search results must contain up-to-date information (in case an institution’s publishing fund is used up, or a quota on the number of articles that can be published through a read-and-publish agreement has been reached). 
  • Academic institutions (or consortia) and publishers that negotiate read-and-publish agreements, must work together to produce simple workflows and coherent information about those workflows. 
  • Support maintenance and development of the existing Open Access infrastructure: e.g. the DOAJ can be developed to include more options for sorting or tagging.
  • Publishers should have good descriptions of journal and book series scope, provide clear language information about the Open Access options available at their venues, and maintain up-to-date information in Sherpa Romeo and the DOAJ. Publishers can also develop tools to assist researchers in finding the correct journal venues for their research.
4. What informational resources and training would you like OPERAS to provide for you or your organization? (If you have any other suggestions on how OPERAS can help other stakeholders in the publishing landscape you are welcome to comment.)

OPERAS is currently offering and developing the following services32

  • Certification Service,
  • Metrics Service,
  • Publishing Service Portal,
  • Discovery Service,
  • Research for Society Service.

It is involved in a number of projects, among them the Open Access Diamond Journals Study33 and the CO-OPERAS34 GoFAIR Implementation Network. Apart from the Advocacy SIG, OPERAS has launched Special Interest Groups on Best Practices, Common Standards and FAIR principles, Multilingualism, Open Access Business Models, Platforms and Services, and Tools Research and Development35. For more information about OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG, please see ch. VI. “About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG.

The following suggestions were provided by the survey respondents.

Suggestions for informational resources and training:

  • Design Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and interactive courses to help researchers understand the new paradigm of scientific communication with Open Access and Open Science: something fun and interactive like the Dilemma Game36 (designed for research integrity).
  • Provide training for researchers (differentiated by discipline and region) on how to find suitable publishers and what services to expect from them, how to find financial support for open access fees, how to choose between the different licences and infrastructure. Participate actively where researchers are, e.g. in conferences in their fields.
  • Provide advice on good dissemination of results for researchers: how to choose a journal/publisher, where to self-archive, which social networks to use, etc.
  • Recommend practical tools for manuscript and publishing workflow – both for researchers and publishers.
  • Organize train-the-trainer courses for Open Access advocacy.
  • Provide information on open data in social sciences and humanities (different types of data, where to deposit, etc).
  • Share experiences and resources from other institutions.
  • Offer an overview of services from other  Open Access infrastructures and content providers, ideally in collaboration with them.
  • Design advocacy material aimed at publishers that demonstrates the benefits of Open Access publishing and proposes alternatives for making their content openly available, e.g. releasing their backlist into open access.

Other suggestions:

  • Help foster initiatives that are community-led, not-for-profit and non-competitive. Help these initiatives communicate their needs to funders and policy makers.
  • Support more open source initiatives and contribute to the development of the infrastructure for scholarly communication – from research tools to discoverability.
  • Provide support services on legal issues (copyright issues and open licencing).
  • Collaborate with publishers in the development of new practices and standards (peer review, data sharing, infrastructure).
  • Explore the implementation of the FAIR principles in order to optimize interoperability between platforms and aggregators.
  • Provide a help desk on funding and financing models.

Recommendations for national audiences: Germany as a case study

When researchers and/or institutions search for opportunities to publish Open Access or services in the field of open scholarly communication, this usually happens primarily in the local area. Obstacles such as language, distance (regarding research or physically) or specific reference to the national landscape can be challenges that prevent them from contacting international Research Infrastructures directly. It is therefore important to establish contact officers or offices in the regional network, i.e. at the national level, and thus, create a link to international Research Infrastructures. The following uses the example of OPERAS-GER, the German national node project of OPERAS, to provide some recommendations for national audiences.

International infrastructures and initiatives require national formats for interaction. National nodes can function as access points with specific knowledge of the national research landscape and a strong local network. Therefore they can target stakeholders more specifically. As part of the OPERAS-P project, the development of national nodes in member countries was therefore a focus and started in 2020. The Executive Assembly, the central hub, coordinates the national nodes. The ten core members of OPERAS37 agreed to each act as a national node.

Tasks of national nodes

Each node fulfills the following tasks:

  • Is a connection point to the outside of the OPERAS community, helping to identify needs, as well as to provide services and training;
  • Contributes to linking national services and infrastructures to the European level;
  • Connects with national nodes of other Research Infrastructures (CESSDA, CLARIN, DARIAH, ESS, SHARE, etc.) relevant for the social sciences and humanities disciplines;
  • Links to e-infrastructures under the umbrella of the EOSC and SSHOC.

OPERAS develops such contact networks through its national nodes. Germany was the first country to start the implementation in October 2020 and received project funding from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) at national level38.

National nodes are different to other networks, such as CLARIAH-DE in Germany. The aim is to link and bridge between the European and national level and not to build a parallel structure of the Research Infrastructure in each country.

Strategy and implementation

Using the example of Germany’s national node (OPERAS-GER), which was set up based on the OPERAS internal “Handbook for National Nodes”, this section outlines the procedures and strategies that can be used to set up future OPERAS national nodes.

Analysis of the national landscape

First of all, it is important to understand how national landscapes are positioned in the area of ​​Open Access and Open Science. The following questions can be asked:

  • Does an Open Access network already exist?
  • Are Open Access and other aspects of Open Science already supported by the government?
  • Who are the main actors in the area of ​​Open Access (universities? research institutions? individual actors?)
  • Are there other international Research Infrastructures or other initiatives being funded?
  • In which areas can one find general opportunities and in which areas are there still obstacles?
Germany as a case study: Germany is generally well positioned in the area of Open Access and Open Science. There are many projects and Research Infrastructures that are funded in this area, especially by the government. Nevertheless, the autonomy of each federal state in educational matters and the additional autonomy and academic freedom (“Wissenschaftsfreiheit”) of each university show a decentralized, diverse and complex system with often parallel structures. However, with the development of the National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI), initiated by the BMBF, an attempt is being made to bundle resources and focus on a more centralised structure.

Moreover, studies such as the internal “OPERAS Landscape study on funders and funding mechanisms”, regional analyses or other surveys, help clarify the analysis of the national landscape.

Definition of your own position

Once the landscape has been analysed, it is important to identify:

  • which niches may not yet be covered;
  • which international developments add value to the national landscape;
  • which target group you would like to address.

These considerations are also important when you have to find funding for activities of the national node, for instance via project application funding.

For example, it may be that there are already many Open Access initiatives and strong awareness that is promoted by the government. Or there are certain disciplinary approaches such as the focus on social sciences and humanities of OPERAS. It can be that the provision of services that do not yet exist at the national level are of interest (OPERAS-GER case). If the national structures have not yet been developed, general advocacy for Open Access and Open Science might first have to be carried out before being able to focus on specific subtopics.

Germany as a case study: Initiatives at a national and federal state level to promote and advocate Open Access and Open Science are well developed in Germany. But there is a clear lack of appropriate services39 which OPERAS has been developing at a European level. Institutions are still looking more individually for solutions or developing them by themselves.

Increasing awareness

The relevant Research Infrastructure must first be made known through communication and advocacy within the research landscape. As described in the introduction to this document, communication is primarily about the dissemination of information, while advocacy is aimed at engaging public opinion and gaining broad public support. For general communication, factsheets and informational material can be translated. This document can be a helpful guide to structure communication and advocacy.

Germany as a case study: The transfer of information and broad advocacy in order to increase the level of awareness is reflected in the communication strategy on a national level, which is recommended to be drawn up before measures and channels are established. For OPERAS-GER, creating a blog on hypotheses.de40 was identified as an effective communication channel, as this format is very well known and popular in the field of social sciences and humanities within Germany, as well as setting up a Twitter channel. If other target groups should be reached, other channels can become of interest.

Networking

In order to network, OPERAS-GER takes part in various national conferences and tries to connect with institutions, libraries, data centers etc. via events and personal contacts. Exchange and networking events such as “OPERAS Open Chats”, and short exchange events to introduce OPERAS to different target groups, are being organised. Additionally, individual meetings and participation in local networks are taking place.

One of the most important tasks for national communities is the establishment of networks and contacts to the target group, which creates a link back to the European level of OPERAS. Therefore, a link to other existing national nodes and contact points or infrastructures can be approached, as well as individual formats of networks.

Collection of needs

The aim, tasks, and especially services and offers, of OPERAS should be presented in order to collect needs within the national communities. Simultaneously, the needs of the national scientific community should be integrated at a European level.

For the German audience the interest in the OPERAS-Services are exceptionally high, but of course the audience also wishes that the services fulfil their needs. Therefore, a detailed presentation of the services in the format of workshops, and possibly implementation workshops, are of importance and are being conducted.

In general, it is recommended to use national language(s) for at least 50% of all communication outputs. This enables you to reach target groups outside the existing OPERAS and other international communities.

Recommendations on advocacy actions for the social sciences and humanities

Advocacy for the social sciences and humanities

The main goal of this chapter is to develop a strategy on how to advocate for the social sciences and humanities disciplines among main stakeholders both at national and at European levels, and create guidelines on how to approach the main stakeholders41.

Key tasks for advocating for the social sciences and humanities disciplines include:

  • Understanding the field and the specific needs of each stakeholder;
  • Enforcing cultural change in scholarly communication in the respective social sciences and humanities communities;
  • Strengthening the role and reach of social sciences and humanities in policy-making and public discourse;
  • Facilitating advocacy activities to policy makers in order to enhance stakeholders’ abilities to make an impact;
  • Introducing tools and good practices in collaboration with the stakeholders.

This chapter is mainly based on the insights of the panellists who spoke at the panel discussion “How to advocate for social sciences and humanities” as part of the OPERAS conference “Opening up Social Sciences and Humanities in Europe: From Promises to Reality”: Jane Ohlmeyer, Jack Spaapen, Alíz Horváth, Nina Kancewicz-Hoffman and Marc Vanholsbeeck.

Challenges

The biggest challenge for developing advocacy activities for the social sciences and humanities is its huge diversity. These disciplines have various impacts and fields of interest, therefore their advocacy goals and tools to achieve them might be different. Before approaching any of the stakeholders you need to know the specificity of the field you are advocating for and the communication culture within it.

The second challenge is to properly adjust the advocacy actions to the stakeholder group you are addressing. While advocating concrete goals to any of the crucial stakeholders: academic and research institutions, infrastructures, researchers, funders and policy makers, one needs to set a clear agenda and milestones and choose formats which are as informative, supportive and relevant for the stakeholder as possible. Some tools, like social media campaigns might be much less effective than an email or a meeting face to face for some stakeholders but do work better for others.

Taking into account the pandemic situation the third biggest challenge will be to make the social sciences and humanities an important voice for the post-pandemic policy solutions. Developing immediate and effective advocacy actions was never as important. 

Below we will summarise specifications of each group of the stakeholders and present what type of actions and tools are the most suitable to reach the stakeholders as well to implement in their advocacy actions. However, you should keep in mind that each of the actions you will choose for your campaign should be fitted to the advocacy goal as well as the social sciences and humanities field you are advocating for. Before starting advocacy actions targeting any of the stakeholders, it is of great help to already have strong partners from academia and other areas already supporting the envisioned goal.

Advocacy actions

Academic and research institutions

The organisational structure and communication culture of academic institutions is one of the most important factors that influence the role of social sciences and humanities and their impact on policy making processes. When approaching institutions it is important to map them according to those factors. Is the institution independent or a part of the university structure? Does it have an open mandate? How does it support their researchers in terms of publishing data and results? Does it have their own publishing entity or a repository? These are questions that need to be answered beforehand. In order to implement changes within an institution a long term approach needs to be taken. The cultural change is about changing behaviours, workflows and procedures. Academic and research institutions need a realistic and feasible plan for the change to happen.

In order to strengthen their impact on policy making, institutions need to build better relationships with policy makers, academia members and the wider audience. Many academic institutions have not yet implemented open mandates which should be considered one of the first milestones of the advocacy agenda for this group of stakeholders. They need standardised models of cooperation with individual researchers, publishers and e-infrastructure, corresponding to institutional open mandates and Open Access publishing standards.

Clear advocacy agenda

  • We need to guide academic institutions through the process of creating advocacy agenda for themselves, concerning issues such as state evaluation criteria or increasing funding for interdisciplinary projects.
  • It is helpful to have “champions” at European level for open research data to serve as an example and make people follow their example.
  • We need to guide a number of institutions in each country through the process of establishing an open mandate.

Direct meetings with policy makers, academia and other stakeholders

  • When organising such events we should take into account availability of most important stakeholders (often a lot of academics or non-governmental organizations are present but policy makers, like members of the European Parliament or of the national parliaments and their staff are not widely represented). 
  • The time and venue is important, also a format has to be convincing. 
  • If policy makers cannot participate, policy briefs are a good option for reaching them.
  • It is important to facilitate follow-up meetings (or any kind of a follow-up) between different stakeholders, especially the representatives of academia and the policy makers. 
  • We need to convince stakeholders that the meetings will be informative, useful and valuable instead of time-consuming.

Cooperation with media

  • A broader audience can be reached if public debates are organized in collaboration with media in an Open Access format.
  • Reaching out to media outlets with stories related to social sciences and humanities advocacy goals and needs.

E-Infrastructures and Research Infrastructures

E-infrastructures and Research Infrastructures support scholars in navigating through the magnitude of technical tools and resources, as well as in communicating their needs to publishers and service providers. This requires clear communication between users (researchers), service providers and tool developers.

One of the challenges associated with this is that information about infrastructures is not sufficiently disseminated – many researchers are not aware of their existence or do not know which infrastructures would be most useful to them. Another problem that has been identified is the fragmentation of services. Many publicly funded Research Infrastructure services are in competition with each other. One of the major challenges is also the insufficient public funding and a lack of funding opportunities for the long-term maintenance of services. 

There is a need for more tools and resources to address specific research needs. Cooperation between different stakeholders and between disciplines is not sufficient.  Increasing this collaboration could result in more toolkits for inter- and transdisciplinary researchers.

Research infrastructures also need more diverse teams whose members have expertise in different fields (e.g. researchers, librarians, software developers). This could result in a better understanding of the research needs of different stakeholders, improve collaborative work on the development of tools and technical resources, as well as facilitate communication and dissemination of information.

Organising workshops

  • Conducting a number of workshops regarding different scientific tools useful for particular disciplines and scholarly communities.

Providing and adapting tools

  • Creating toolkits in tight collaboration with different stakeholders.

Disseminating information

  • e.g. via newsletters and blogs regarding latest news in the area of social sciences and humanities.

Supporting institutions

  • Providing links between academic institutions and Research Infrastructures in order to guide them through the process of creating advocacy agenda for themselves, concerning issues such as state evaluation criteria.

User studies

  • Surveys for researchers and institutions, the results of which can be used to develop better tools and services.

Researchers

Researchers as the creators of the social sciences and humanities output are the largest group of stakeholders whose engagement in communicating and disseminating information will have a significant impact on the efficiency of advocacy actions. As such, they have a special status compared to the other groups of stakeholders mentioned in this guide. Researchers constitute a wide community therefore they usually need to be addressed through actions of academic institutions, funders and service providers. However, some of the actions might be conducted by researchers themselves addressing other researchers. The reason for this is that researchers, at least in some countries, are often not exclusively working for a research project but they, at the same time, employ roles as e.g. funders for other research projects or service providers.

Social sciences and humanities researchers are naturally already quite convinced of the importance of their research and social sciences and humanities research in general. The challenge however is to convince them that disseminating their research output via various channels will contribute to social sciences and humanities development and as a result will increase research opportunities for scholars themselves. Using Open Access tools, engaging in blogs and participating in popularising events are some of the actions researchers might take to improve social sciences’ and humanities’ impact on policy making. 

Collaborative research projects are essential to increase social sciences and humanities impact and their potential to reach various audiences inside and outside academia. Interdisciplinary collaboration improves researchers’ communication skills making it easier for them to explain their findings with less traditional formats, such as visualisations, podcasts and blogs. The social sciences and humanities output needs to be communicated with new narratives in order to change its stereotypical image as an often abstract knowledge.

Storytelling

  • For better reaching other researches and to convince peers
  • Improving skills in digital storytelling is a way to reach wider audiences and explain essential results in an intelligible manner.

Blogging

  • For providing an outlet that is read by researchers and enables them to interactively engage.
  • Workshops regarding blogging and social media communication, using such platforms like Open Edition Hypotheses.
  • Sharing good practices of blogging and posting about research findings.

Visualisations and infographics

  • Workshops on increasing visibility and using audio-visual material to better communicate findings to wider audiences and especially also to other researchers.

Podcasts 

  • As a way to “humanize” topics, to reach a broad audience and peers.
  • Factors to consider when launching a podcast: equipment, platform, schedule, outreach, promotion (most challenging), thematic focus and scope.
  • Care and enthusiasm is essential.

Events for social sciences and humanities communities

  • We need to create space for the social sciences and humanities communities to meet and exchange information regarding current needs in their specific fields.
  • It is important to create a comfortable space for stakeholders to discuss issues and avoid a situation of no follow-ups after the conference.

Policy makers

A goal for any advocacy actions targeting policy makers is to convey a better knowledge of good practices in the social sciences and humanities. Advocacy actions in general require a long-term approach, persistence and perseverance, this is even more so when targeting policy makers. Policy makers are  interested in a realistic plan, including clear milestones and indicators. More attention should thus be paid to the feasibility of the proposed action. It is often not clear to policy makers what humanists actually do and that the humanities, too, are based on evidence. Yet, the impact that social sciences and humanities research can have on society is a huge selling point: social sciences and humanities are crucial in reaching the UNESCO’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)42 and have a great impact on many societal topics. Policy makers often receive a lot of invitations, which is why any advocacy action targeting this group needs to immediately convince the targeted policy maker that the activity proposed is informative, useful, valuable, and not too time-consuming.

Any form of advocacy requiring policy makers to attend should therefore create a strong initial interest to distinguish it from the many other invitations they receive. Interactive formats that are convenient to attend, short, and focused on a single topic work best. It is important to plan for follow-ups of the topic and allow for frequent repetition. In order to strongly advocate for the social sciences and humanities with policy makers, science communication about social sciences and humanities research should be precise and evidence-based.

Evening debates

  • Easier for policy makers to attend
  • Short and focus on single topic

Informative and networking event

  • Take into account availability of most important stakeholders
  • Check venue and time for convenience for policy makers
  • Create a strategy to make policy makers interested in your event from the many events they are invited to
  • Create comfortable space to discuss
  • Facilitate follow-ups after the conference

Policy briefs

  • For when policy makers cannot be reached at events or as follow-up

Case study and information material

  • Clear and focused, evidence-based, short
  • Focus on case studies and information material specific to the social sciences and humanities

Funders

In order for funding organizations or entities to better design and evaluate their funding programmes, they need to be strongly engaged in social sciences and humanities communities. This also helps funders in building an understanding of unintended consequences of evaluation models. Interdisciplinary research is especially important in this regard and a topic that is often overlooked or misunderstood by funders. Thus, instead of increasing chances for receiving funding, it sometimes undermines the project. New evaluation models, which strengthen collaborative arrangements, the impact on society, stakeholder engagements, and mutual learning, are necessary. Yet, a strong involvement in social sciences and humanities communities and following these disciplines discourses is time-consuming and difficult to achieve because of the diversity of publication languages and a deep-rootedness in various cultural backgrounds. A general recommendation when trying to receive funding for the social sciences and humanities is to diversify funding streams and to not rely on only one type of funder for all projects.

Types of funding entities vary greatly and the forms of advocacy in targeting these different types (e.g. governmental funders and business foundations) require different approaches. While governmental funders, e.g. European entities, ministries, local administrations, can be targeted with the same formats as policy makers, this is not necessarily true for other types of funding stakeholders. At national level, recommendations may differ. Mostly, however, funding organizations expect the researchers, projects or consortia they are going to fund to approach them, rather than the other way round.

Invitations to give opening speeches at events

  • Take into account availability of most important funders;
  • Check venue and time for convenience for funders;
  • Create strategy to make funders interested in your event from the many events they are invited to;
  • Facilitate follow-ups after the conference and bear in mind that funders might leave after the opening speech.

Case study and information material

  • Clear and focused, evidence-based, short.
  • Focus on social sciences and humanities specific case studies to explain to funders why the social sciences and humanities are important and why their research results should be openly available.

Personal contacts

  • Greater willingness to attend if the person issuing the invitation is already known.

Conclusion

The role of social sciences and humanities in modern societies is getting more and more acknowledged. A fact that indicates this, is the enhanced role that these disciplines have been given in order to improve the assessment and response to complex societal issues in the context of Horizon 2020. Moreover, the social sciences and humanities are key in reaching the 17 UNESCO Sustainable Development Goals. Despite the increasing awareness of the impact of the social sciences and humanities in societies the need for advocacy for these scientific fields, the wider possible audience, still exists.

Advocating for social sciences and humanities is not a task without challenges. The disciplines are extremely diversified fields, and there is not one and only advocacy goal or a single tool for advocating for social sciences and humanities. Therefore, the process is complicated and it has many dimensions. Moreover, the fact that  stakeholders are not always aware of the complexity and richness of the social sciences and humanities domains makes it even more difficult. The types of stakeholders that have been recognized as target audiences for social sciences and humanities advocacy, for the needs of this guide, are the following: academic and research institutions, e-infrastructures and research infrastructures, researchers, policy makers, and funders. Each one of these stakeholders has different needs and roles in the research and policy ecosystems, so the tools and the practices that should be used in each case must be specified for every stakeholder.

Academic institutions need to create an advocacy agenda of their own for the social sciences and humanities in order to strengthen their impact on policy making. In this effort they need guidance in order to build relationships with policy makers and the wider possible audience. Collaboration with the mass media is required for this task. Research infrastructures have a crucial role in helping researchers to find and adopt the technical tools and resources that are more suitable to their research. Despite the importance of infrastructures many researchers are not aware of their existence or do not know how to exploit them. Activities that support the dissemination of information about infrastructures and the closer interaction between infrustructures, researchers and academic institutions, such as workshops, toolkits, surveys etc. are needed. Researchers are a special target group since they actually produce the research work, i.e. the main output of social sciences and humanities research. Researchers have to be convinced that by disseminating the output of their work they will contribute to making social sciences and humanities more visible and more relevant to the handling of societal issues. Consequently they have to accept that they need to improve their digital skills in storytelling in order to reach wider audiences. Workshops on using audio-visual material, as well as on blogging and social communication can be very useful. Social sciences and humanities research can have a major impact on contemporary societies, but this often is not clear to policy makers. This happens because policy makers are not familiar with what these scholars do, while it is not clear to them that social sciences and humanities research is evidence based as is the case for other sciences too. The advocacy events or documents that target policy makers must highlight this last point and they have to be focused, short and precise. Funders are a diversified group. While governmental funders can be targeted with activities that are suitable for policy makers, this is not the case for other types of funders. A general remark however is that funding organizations expect researchers to approach them first, rather than the other way around.

For all these activities, the national landscape mustn’t be forgotten. Researchers and/or institutions searching for opportunities to publish Open Access or looking for services in the field of open scholarly communication usually do so in a national or language context. It is thus one of the great challenges of Research Infrastructures to establish regional or national contact points as part of their work to address the scholarly communication needs of researchers. When creating a national node, an organization should carefully analyze the national landscape first, as it could differ greatly from the overall European context. As a next step, a definition of the node’s own position within this landscape should be undertaken, before increasing awareness for your topic and building a functioning network of contacts. This should then be followed by a collection of needs that can be fed back to the European Research Infrastructure. For all these activities it is crucial to use the national language for the activities.

Among the concerns of researchers with regard to Open Access publishing, most recommendations from the 2018 White Paper are still valid three years later. Information campaigns about Open Access publishing are still needed, especially with regard to the quality of Open Access publication venues. Training, demonstrations, information, and support are also the main obstacles for making it a conventional practice to use licences that allow reuse and distribution of research results. In addition, our survey showed that advocacy actions directed at both policy makers and funders are needed to achieve a paradigm shift. For researchers to more easily identify Open Access publishing options, again easily accessible information, as well as simple workflows, are needed. 

We all acknowledge that the pandemic has brought humanity in an unpresented situation. In the post-pandemic era many pressing problems will keep arising. This is a first class challenge for social sciences and humanities to raise a voice that will provide solutions to the emerging policy issues. This means that the need for effective advocacy for the social sciences and humanities is now perhaps more pressing than ever. 

About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG

OPERAS is the Research Infrastructure supporting open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities in the European Research Area. Its mission is to coordinate and federate resources in Europe to efficiently address the scholarly communication needs of European researchers in the field of social sciences and humanities. OPERAS’ aim is to make Open Science a reality for research in the social sciences and humanities and achieve a scholarly communication system where knowledge produced in the social sciences and humanities benefits researchers, academics, students and more generally the whole society across Europe and worldwide, without barriers.43

The project OPERAS-P’s primary goal is to support the development of OPERAS. It thus follows three objectives: to support the ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures) application, start the implementation of innovative services and support the expansion of the consortium to improve the scholarly ecosystem in the social sciences and humanities. It furthermore ensures the sustainable outreach and advocacy for open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities. 

This guide has been developed by the OPERAS Advocacy SIG in the context of the OPERAS-P project. The Advocacy SIG currently has eight member organizations: (Göttingen University Library (SUB Göttingen), Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IBL PAN), Max Weber Stiftung (MWS), National Documentation Centre (EKT), OpenEdition, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, University of Turin (UniTo), University of Zadar (UNIZD)) and two individual members. It is coordinated by Max Weber Stiftung. Organizations interested in contributing to the SIG can contact Elisabeth Ernst (ernst@maxweberstiftung.de). The SIG is open to any member of the OPERAS Research Infrastructure, specifically including “observers” wishing to participate in the SIG.44

The Advocacy SIG has produced a White Paper on advocacy for Open Access publishing in July 2018.45 The White Paper addresses the importance of Open Science for the social sciences and humanities, highlighting the role of a distributed research infrastructure like OPERAS in advocating for Open Access publishing models. Furthermore, the paper discusses the importance of the social sciences and humanities in Open Science, showing how Open Science itself benefits from considering and accommodating the needs of researchers from different disciplinary backgrounds. While OPERAS does not endorse a specific Open Access publishing model, the infrastructure partners advocate for publication processes that can meet the present demand for Open Access, transparency, and open source tools in scholarly communication.

Acknowledgments

The results and recommendations of this guide have been carefully selected by members of the OPERAS Advocacy SIG. They however only reflect the views of a limited number of people, as in ch. II “Researchers’ needs related to Open Access publishing”, the experiences of a national node in a single country, as in ch. III. “Recommendations for National Audiences: Germany as a Case Study” and the suggestions of a selection of panellists, as in ch. IV “Recommendations on advocacy actions for the social sciences and humanities”. Yet, many of the results and recommendations can also be adapted for further use for advocacy actions in different contexts. 

The Advocacy SIG has, with this guide, concluded its work on researchers’ needs related to Open Access publishing. Together with Annex 2 of the 2018 White Paper, the Advocacy SIG has produced detailed information on researchers’ needs and has shown how different types of stakeholders can react in order to tackle these concerns. The Advocacy SIG has also finalized its work on advocacy for the social sciences and humanities with the list of recommendations and suggestions developed for this guide.

The recommendations for national audiences in this guide were based on the example of the first OPERAS national node in Germany. In Spring 2021, 5 other national nodes kicked-off: Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, and Portugal. They are also led by OPERAS members and are aiming at engaging national communities in OPERAS’ actions and to promote OPERAS’ services and solutions. Recommendations for national audiences will thus, as a future project, need to focus more on the countries where OPERAS has already established a national node.

The Advocacy SIG will continue to work on this last topic. Other topics the Advocacy SIG will give some perspectives on are multilingualism (together with the Multilingualism SIG) and the FAIR principles (together with the Common Standards and FAIR principles SIG).

List of Acronyms and Abbreviations

APCarticle processing charge
BMBFFederal Ministry of Education and Research
CESSDAConsortium of European Social Science Data Archives
CLARINCommon Language Resources and Technology Infrastructure
CNRSCentre national de la recherche scientifique
DARIAHDigital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities
DOABDirectory of Open Access Books
DOAJDirectory of Open Access Journals
EOSCEuropean Open Science Cloud
ESFRIEuropean Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures
ESSEuropean Social Survey
EUEuropean Union
FAIRFindability, Accessibility, Interoperability, and Reuse 
IBL PANInstitute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences
LIBERAssociation of European Research Libraries
MOOCMassive Open Online Course
MWSMax Weber Stiftung
EKTNational Documentation Centre
NFDINational Research Data Infrastructure
OAOpen Access
OPERASOpen scholarly communication in the European Research Area for social sciences and humanities
OPERAS-PPreparing open access in the European research area through scholarly communication
SDGSustainable Development Goals
SHARESurvey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe
SIGSpecial Interest Group
SSHsocial sciences and humanities
SSHOCSocial Sciences & Humanities Open Cloud
SUB GöttingenGöttingen University Library
UniToUniversity of Turin
UNIZDUniversity of Zadar
ZRC SAZUThe Research Center of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts 

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List of Images

Fig. 1: The scope of communication, advocacy, and lobbying. Created by Elisabeth Ernst and Marlen Töpfer. CC BY 4.0.

  1. For more information on OPERAS see ch. VI. “About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG”.
  2. See Ernst et al. (2020) for a previous version of this document.
  3. For the project OPERAS-P see https://www.operas.unito.it/projects/operas-p/. For more on the activities of the Advocacy SIG within OPERAS-P see Schulte et al. (2021) and OPERAS Consortium (2021).
  4. See Heinemann et al. (2018).
  5. See https://operas.hypotheses.org/files/2020/02/OPERAS_Rules_of_Participation.pdf.
  6. See Gezelter (2009) and OECD (2015).
  7. See https://www.budapestopenaccessinitiative.org/read.
  8. See https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/advocacy.
  9. See https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/advocacy.
  10. See https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lobbying
  11. See https://www.operas.unito.it/about/governance-schema/how-we-work-together/.
  12. For more information on the 2018 White Paper of the OPERAS Advocacy SIG see ch. VI. “About OPERAS and the Advocacy SIG”.
  13. See Bosman et. al (2021).
  14. See Dallmeier-Tiessen et al. (2011) and Xia (2010).
  15. See Ross-Hellauer et al. (2017).
  16. See https://doaj.org/.
  17. See https://www.doabooks.org/.
  18. See https://thinkchecksubmit.org/.
  19. See https://www.qoam.eu/.
  20. See Becerril et al. (2021).
  21. See Bosman et al (2021).
  22. See https://chooser-beta.creativecommons.org/.
  23. See https://www.openwa.org/open-attrib-builder/.
  24. See https://hcommons.org/terms/.
  25. See https://cyber.harvard.edu/hoap/Drafting_a_policy.
  26. See https://libereurope.eu/about-us/.
  27. See the Draft Law for the Use of Publicly Funded Scholarly Publications: https://libereurope.eu/draft-law-for-the-use-of-publicly-funded-scholarly-publications/.
  28. See https://oapen.org/.
  29. See https://www.re3data.org/.
  30. See http://roar.eprints.org/.
  31. See https://v2.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/.
  32. For more information on OPERAS’ services see: https://www.operas-eu.org/services/.
  33. See: https://www.operas-eu.org/projects/the-oa-diamond-journals-study/.
  34. See: https://www.operas-eu.org/international-partnerships/co-operas/.
  35. See: https://www.operas-eu.org/special-interest-groups/.
  36. See https://www.eur.nl/en/about-eur/policy-and-regulations/integrity/research-integrity/dilemma-game.
  37. The current members of OPERAS’ Executive Assembly are (in alphabetical order): Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Jisc, Max Weber Stiftung (MWS), National Documentation Centre (EKT), OAPEN, The Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IBL PAN), The Research Center of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ZRC SAZU), University of Coimbra, University of Turin (UniTo), University of Zadar (UNIZD).
  38. More information on the project “OPERAS-GER”: https://operas-ger.hypotheses.org.
  39. See ch. II.C. “Results and Recommendations” for more information on the services that OPERAS is developing and offering.
  40. Also see https://hypotheses.org/.
  41. See ch. I.D. “Stakeholders and target audiences” for a description of the main audiences.
  42. See https://sdgs.un.org/goals.
  43. See https://www.operas-eu.org/about/operas-in-a-nutshell/.
  44. To find out more about the different types of membership and how to join a SIG: https://www.operas.unito.it/about/want-to-know-more/want-to-join-operas/.
  45. See Heinemann et al. (2018).