Jump directly to the page contents

98th Helmholtz Open Science Newsletter

Issue of June 21, 2023

1.G7 Science Ministers Emphasize the Relevance of Open Science

Under the title ”Respect for freedom and inclusiveness in scientific research and promotion of open science”, the science ministers of the G7 countries addressed the topic of open science at their recent meeting in Sendai, Japan, in May 2023, and emphasized its relevance. In a final declaration, they highlight the importance of open science practices, the role of research infrastructures, the FAIR principles, and access to research data. They also address the handling of medical research data and the importance of science communication. You can read a short summary of the meeting here (in German only).

2. Open Science Strategies Adopted in Spain and Italy

In early May 2023, the Spanish government adopted a national open science strategy (in Spanish) for the period 2023 to 2027. Under the strategy, open access is to become the norm for all publicly funded research outputs. Four goals are anchored in the open science strategy: building interoperable information infrastructures, promoting the FAIR principles for the re-use of research data, open access to scientific publications as a standard, and implementing incentive systems and research evaluation mechanisms to promote open science practices. The measures will be backed by an annual budget of around 24 million euros until 2027. In the second half of 2023, Spain will take over the presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Meanwhile, in Italy, the state research organization Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR) has approved an internal roadmap for open science (in Italian). The five core topics include research outputs, research evaluation, research infrastructures for open science, training and support, and the organizational framework for action.

3. EU Member States Emphasize the Role of Science-led Open Access Models Beyond APCs

Under the heading ”conclusions on high-quality, transparent, open, trustworthy and equitable scholarly publishing” the Council of the European Union on May 23 presented a further reaffirmation of support for open access as a publishing standard, reiterating the call for immediate open access for publicly funded scientific publications. It emphasizes the need to promote not-for-profit and science-led open access models while pointing out the disadvantages to research of the current dominance of commercial business models in publishing. In a statement, the DFG welcomed and commented on the Council conclusions.

4. Federal and State Guideline on Open Access

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has published a joint Bund-Länder-Leitlinie (i. e., federal and state guideline) on open access. The guideline reaffirms the declared goal of establishing open access as the standard of publishing in science. In the guideline, the federal and state governments encourage the strengthening of scholar-led and science-owned publishing platforms. In addition, efforts to modify scientific reputation systems and to further advance research assessment are explicitly supported; DORA is cited as an example.

5. AGU Publishes Guidelines for the Ethical Use of AI in the Earth and Space Sciences

The world's largest association of earth and space sciences AGU has published a report on the Ethical and Responsible Use of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI/ML) in Earth, Space, and Environmental Sciences. The report outlines principles for researchers and scientific organizations and addresses various issues such as transparency, documentation, interpretation, replicability, risk, bias, participatory methods and organizational practices, accountability for impact in research, and proactive expectations from professional societies, funders, and other institutional stakeholders. The report acknowledges the importance of AI/ML protocols in science, but also anticipates and mitigates the risks associated with these methods.

6. Guidelines for the Development and Distribution of Software at Forschungszentrum Jülich

At the 4th Helmholtz Open Science Forum on Research Software, Ute Schelhaas from Corporate Development at Forschungszentrum Jülich (FZJ) presented the ”Guidelines for the development and distribution of software at Forschungszentrum Jülich”. The guidelines provide a practical and secure framework for the sustainable handling of research software in line with good scientific practice. They cover topics such as distribution, citation, and licensing, as well as assistance from within the FZJ. The guidelines are based on the “Model Policy on Sustainable Software at the Helmholtz Centers” of the Helmholtz Association's Open Science Working Group.

7. Consultation on the Planned Research Data Act: Statements Published

Following a public consultation in April 2023 on the enactment of a potential research data law, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has now published the statements of about 90 organizations and individuals from science and research (in German). The planned law is intended to reshape the framework for data access, data sharing, and data processing and preservation. The consultation on the Research Data Act is intended to identify practical needs and gather feedback on legal and practical feasibility.

8. Launch of Dialog Platform and Social Media of PID Network Germany

As reported previously, the DFG project “PID Network Germany”, which aims to establish a network of PID experts, users and developers to promote PID systems on a local, national, and international level, started on March 01, 2023. Recently, the website pid-network.de has been launched. The site will serve as a virtual dialog platform, bundles central information on PIDs and supports the project's public relations work and knowledge transfer on the topic. The platform will be gradually expanded during the project period and include information on international standards, best practices, FAQs and support services. At the moment the website is only available in German, but a translation to English is planned. In addition, news about the development, usage and implementation of PIDs will now be communicated via the project's social media channels on Mastodon [@PIDNetworkDE@openbiblio.social] and Twitter [@PIDNetworkDE].

9. Retrospective: Helmholtz Open Science Forum “Scholar-Led Publishing at Helmholtz”

On April 13, 2023 the Helmholtz Open Science Forum ”Scholar-Led Publishing at Helmholtz” took place. Based on a first draft of a position statement on the issue, which was jointly developed by the Helmholtz Open Science Office and the Task Group Open Access Transformation of the Open Science Working Group in the Helmholtz Association, the approximately 75 participants had the opportunity for information, exchange and discussion.

The forum made an important initial contribution to creating awareness of potential threats for science by misdirected developments of scientific publishing and raised options for further action for Helmholtz. The diverse program offered insights into different working methods and operating models of community-driven open access journals, well-established open access publishing infrastructures as well as a look at the perspectives of the EU publishing platform ”Open Research Europe”. The insights from the presentations and discussions will be incorporated into the further development of the position statement. The documentation of the forum, including the presentation slides of all speakers, can be found here.

10. Retrospective: Helmholtz Open Science Forum “Research Evaluation, Reputation Systems, and Openness”

On May 9, 2023, the Helmholtz Open Science Forum ”Research Evaluation, Reputation Systems, and Openness” took place. On the occasion of this forum, experts from Helmholtz and the scientific community presented current developments in the field of research evaluation and reflected on the connection between reputation systems and openness. The event focused on three main topics: Helmholtz quality indicators for data and software products, 10 years Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), and Coalition for Advancing Research Assessment (CoARA). The documentation of the forum, including the presentation slides of all speakers, can be found shortly via the event’s webpage.

11. Retrospective: Transform2Open Workshop on Cost Monitoring

As part of the DFG-funded project Transform2Open, the first open online workshop of the project on the topic of ”Kostenmonitoring - Problemfelder und Handlungsbedarfe” took place on May 10, 2023 under the leadership of the project partners of the Central Library of Forschungszentrum Jülich. The high relevance of the topic "Cost Monitoring" within the open access transformation was underlined by the high number of participants. About 230 practitioners from universities and non-university research institutions worked together in an intensive exchange on questions about tools, structures and workflows, as well as obstacles and best practices in this context. The presentation slides, including the keynote speeches, are published here.

12. Retrospective on Activities about Reproducibility in Research

Reproducibility is a central component of the discussion on open science, because reproducible research promotes scientific integrity and strengthens societal trust in scientific results. For this reason, the Helmholtz Open Science Office outs more attention to this topic. In this context, colleagues of the Helmholtz Open Science Office were again represented with presentations at conferences.

On May 11, 2023, the German Reproducibility Network (GRN) held its first symposium on ”Education and Reproducibility” in Berlin and online. Representatives from national and international reproducibility initiatives gave presentations on training concepts at their institutions. The workshop was organized in collaboration with the QUEST Center for Responsible Research of the Berlin Institute of Health @Charité and the Helmholtz Open Science Office – both institutions are founding members and members of the GRN's Steering Group.

As part of the Helmholtz AI Conference, the Helmholtz Open Science Office also presented on the topic of reproducibility in relation to machine learning on June 14. The conference took place at DESY in Hamburg from June 12 to 14, 2023, and brought together AI researchers from Helmholtz and beyond.

13. Retrospective: 4th Helmholtz Open Science Forum on Research Software

On May 22 and 23, 2023, the fourth Helmholtz Open Science Forum on Research Software took place at the German Aerospace Center (DLR), a joint event of the Task Group Research Software and the Helmholtz Open Science Office. Representatives of the centers exchanged information about successes and difficulties in establishing a policy for research software at the respective Centers. There were contributions on the topics of software development, licensing, and research data management. An exemplary workflow for the publication of software and the Helmholtz Software Directory was also presented. The documentation of the Forum can be found here shortly.

14. Retrospective BiblioCon 2023: Broad Participation of Helmholtz Open Science Office

From 23 to 26 May 2023, the 111th BiblioCon, for the first time under this new name, took place in Hannover. Around 3,500 participants took the opportunity to learn about new developments in the information sciences and to network at this largest event for the library sector in the German-speaking world. The Helmholtz Open Science Office was again represented this year with various contributions. The Focus Group Open Access Helpdesk contributed a poster, while the projects Transform2Open (presentation) and PID Network Germany (presentation) gave talks. In addition, the Helmholtz Open Science Office was invited to moderate the session on ”Diamond Open Access”.

Save the Dates

  • 07. May 2024

    The project "PID Network Germany" cordially invites you to the online seminar "PIDs for instruments".

  • June 11 to 13, 2024, Prague (Czech Republic)

    The conference serves as an international summit of talks, activities and workshops focussing on the use, application and challenges of persistent…

  • September 10 to 12, 2024,  Cologne

    The Open Access Days are the central annual conference on Open Access and Open Science in the German-speaking area. They will take place from September 10 to 12,…

  • 18.-19. September 2024

    Die 25. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Initiative für Netzwerkinformation (DINI) findet an der Universität Potsdam statt und steht unter dem Motto "Gemeinsame Infrastrukturen für…

Recommended Reading

Brinkman, L., Dijk, E., Jonge, H. de, Loorbach, N., & Rutten, D. (2023). Open science. A practical guide for early-career researchers. Zenodo. doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7716153

Eglen, S. J. (2023). Rights retention: a primer from UKRN [UK Reproducibility Network]. OSF Preprints. doi.org/10.31219/osf.io/2ajsg

Ferwerda, E., Snijder, R., & Stern, N. (2023). Open access to books – the perspective of a non-profit infrastructure provider. Journal of Electronic Publishing, 26(1). doi.org/10.3998/jep.3303

Fleerackers, A., Chtena, N., Pinfield, S., Alperin, J. P., Barata, G., Oliveira, M., & Peters, I. (2023). Making science public: a review of journalists’ use of Open Science research (12:512). F1000Research. doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.133710.1

Haven, T. L., Abunijela, S., & Hildebrand, N. (2023). Biomedical supervisors’ role modeling of open science practices. eLife, 12, e83484. doi.org/10.7554/eLife.83484

Kohrs, F. E., Auer, S., Bannach-Brown, A., Fiedler, S., Haven, T., Heise, V., Holman, C., Azevedo, F., Bernard, R., Bleier, A., Bössel, N., Cahill, B., Castro, L. J., Ehrenhofer, A., Eichel, K., Frank, M., Frick, C., Friese, M., Gärtner, A., … Weissgerber, T. (2023). Eleven strategies for making reproducible research and open science training the norm at research institutions. OSF Preprints. doi.org/10.31219/osf.io/kcvra

Rijcke, S. de, Cosentino, C., Crewe, R., D’Ippoliti, C., Motala-Timol, S., Binti A Rahman, N., Rovelli, L., Vaux, D., & Yupeng, Y. (2023). The future of research evaluation: a synthesis of current debates and developments. The InterAcademy Partnership (IAP). doi.org/10.24948/2023.06

Verburg, M., Braukmann, R., & Mahabier, W. (2023). Making qualitative data reusable - a short guidebook for researchers and data stewards working with qualitative data (Version 1). Zenodo. doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7777519

Imprint & License