[Journal-notes] Re: Open access to research worth £1.5bn a year

Stevan Harnad harnad at ecs.soton.ac.uk
Tue Sep 27 20:35:49 EST 2005

On Tue, 27 Sep 2005, Peter Banks wrote:

> Whether the issue of self-citation or any other aspect of their work
> is convincing is another matter. Although Peter Suber recently claimed
> (in a letter to the Washington Times) that "Study after study has shown
> that free online access increases the impact of research literature,
> as measured by citations, 50 percent to 250 percent," I am not sure
> what "study after study" refers to, though is clearly is a reference to
> Harnad's work.


     "The effect of open access and downloads ('hits') on citation impact:
     a bibliography of studies"

> Dr. Harnad has provided one other refererence
> (http://www.crsc.uqam.ca/lab/chawki/graphes/EtudeImpact.htm ), so perhaps
> "study after study" means literally that: two studies. Or maybe there are
> more, but I can't find references. 

There are studies by other groups in the bibliography above. Our own
studies at UQaM have been on discipline after discipline in the ISI
database, including, so far, biologogical sciences, social sciences,
education, and business. Mor underway. The Southampton studies were on
physics and mathematics.

> Neither of the studies above appears
> to have been peer reviewed or published other than by preprint. Indeed,
> in the first study, the authors make this disclaimer: "Warning: The data
> presented here are preliminary unrefereed results that are still being
> analyzed and corrected (we welcome any suggestions or questions). This
> is not yet the "definitive" version of our findings. Please do not cite
> them without consultation with the authors."

That refers to the data site. You may go ahead and cite the published

> I would encourage interested parties to take the authors up on their
> invitation for (much needed, in my view) peer review.

Warmly welcomed.

Stevan Harnad

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