The Elephant Roundup (September 2022)

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A monthly newsletter from Feeding the Elephant: A Forum for Scholarly Communications.

Open Access

Ann Michael, Tim Vines, Robert Harington, David Crotty, Tao Tao, and Alison Mudditt, Ask The Chefs: OSTP Policy Part I, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), Aug. 30, 2022.

  • The chefs share what they think of the new federal policy, calling for “Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research.” Find out how they think this will play out in the coming months and years.

Ann Michael, Todd A. Carpenter, Angela Cochran, Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe, Karin Wulf, and Michael Clarke, Ask The Chefs: OSTP Policy Part II, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), Aug. 31, 2022.

  • In this second installment addressing the new federal policy aimed at making federally funded research available for free, the rest of the chefs chime in with their thoughts. 


Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility

Ambereen Dadabhoy and Erik Wade, ‘Bright Ages’ So White, Inside Higher Ed, June 3, 2022.

  • A killed book review and resulting racist backlash reveal the extent of white gatekeeping, ally performativity and outright racism in academe.

Colleen Flaherty, Ford Foundation Ends Fellowship Program, Inside Higher Ed, September 20, 2022.

  • The end of the Ford Fellowship program could have ramifications for the diversity of scholars within the academy, Colleen Flaherty explains.

Charles Watkinson and Lisa Bayer, Guest Post — Beyond the “Accidental Profession”: Bringing More Structure, Equity, and Respect to Scholarly Publishing Employment, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 12, 2022.

  • HR departments often poorly define publishing roles, but clear descriptions and promotional pathways are essential for equity, Watkinson and Bayer write, outlining the problem and the work ahead for the AUPresses’ Task Force on Career Progression.


Peer Review

Jennifer Regala, Michael Groth, and Michael Casp, We Asked the Community: Is Research Integrity Possible without Peer Review? The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 14, 2022.

  • “Is research integrity possible without peer review?” While peer review lends credibility to research, there is room for improvement according to many of the respondents. Other parts of the publication process are also crucial to integrity some scholars pointed out.

Alice Meadows, Rick Anderson, David Smith, Haseeb Irfanullah, Tim Vines, and David Crotty, Ask the Chefs: Is Research Integrity Possible without Peer Review?, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 15, 2022.

  • Is peer review overrated? What other alternatives exist? Do scholars assume that work submitted by peers is already reliable? Should peer reviewers be charged with catching ethics violations? The chefs weigh in.

Jennifer Regala, D. Robert Siemens, Ask an Editor-in-Chief/Surgeon/Researcher/Author/ Reviewer: Is Research Integrity Possible without Peer Review? The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 16, 2022.

  • “What does the RESEARCHER think?” Peer review provides scholars with confidence that peers in other disciplines are worthy based on external review, Siemens explains, but does that mean everything before peer review became mainstream is worthless? Has peer review removed all problems in academic research? Perhaps not, but peer review still holds merit, according to Siemens.

Karin Wulf, Alice Meadows, and Tim Vines, Does Trust in Research Begin with Trust in Peer Review? The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 19, 2022.

  • While peer review is an important cornerstone of research integrity, the authors caution against seeing it as a bulwark against all issues that may arise in scholarship.

Chris Graf, Guest Post — Peer Review and Research Integrity: Five Reasons to be Cheerful, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 20, 2022.

  • Can peer review actually catch misconduct? It’s unclear, but Chris Graf provides us with several reasons why we should be appreciative of peer review.

Karin Wulf, Peer Review and Humanities Online: An Interview with Daryle Williams about the Journal of Slavery and Data Preservation, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 21, 2022.

  • Daryle Williams, Dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, University of California Riverside, and Editor of the Journal of Slavery and Data Preservation explains how the humanities have struggled with peer review for non-traditional publications, data sets, and the digital humanities and what can be done.

Erin Landis, Meghan McDevitt, and Jason Roberts, Guest Post — Integrity and Trust in Peer Reviewed Literature: Will Journals Be Alone in Doing the Heavy Lifting? The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 23, 2022.

  • The authors report on Ninth International Congress on Peer Review and Scientific Publication, including initiatives for more honesty in authorship, improving diversity among researchers, and more.


Academic Freedom

Liam Knox, Another Disruption Reignites Campus Speech Debate, Inside Higher Ed, September 20, 2022.

  • As students protested a talk given by Tomi Lahren at the University of New Mexico, media attention focused on vandalism, but some students who purchased tickets to attend the talk to engage Lahren were denied entry. Liam Knox also discusses how universities might prepare in advance of the arrival of controversial speakers.

Francie Diep, It’s Not Clear Whether Public-College Professors Have First Amendment Rights When They’re Teaching, The Chronicle of Higher Education, September 26, 2022.

  • Lawyers for the State of Florida are arguing that professors do not have a right to freedom of speech when they teach, outraging faculty, but two law professors state that there is legal uncertainty. 

Nell Gluckman, ‘It’s Making Us Accomplices’: A University Tells Faculty to ‘Remain Neutral’ on Abortion Discussions in Class, The Chronicle of Higher Education, September 26, 2022.

  • An Idaho abortion ban makes it a felony to “promote abortion” and “counsel people in favor of abortion,” leading university counsel there to caution faculty and staff regarding talking about abortion with students.


Scholarly Communications

Joanne W. Golann, 10 Ways to Promote Your First Academic Book, Inside Higher Ed, September 22, 2022.

  • The typical academic monograph sells in limited numbers – and mainly to libraries – but how might you ensure your scholarship reaches more people?

Chris Houghton, Guest Post — Three Challenges (and Solutions) to Expand Digital Humanities, The Scholarly Kitchen (blog), September 26, 2022.

  • Increasing focus on the importance of digital humanities has opened new avenues for research. Houghton outlines some of the issues facing the digital humanities, including finding data, hosting it, and developing the technical skills for analysis.


ICYMI on the Elephant

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