On Tuesday 14 February 2023, the YERUN Open Science Awards ceremony was held online. Almost 60 participants took part in this joyful event aimed at celebrating Open Science and highlighting the need to foster it in universities.
As highlighted by Ms. Silvia Gomez Recio, YERUN Secretary General in her welcome speech, Open Science has been a priority for YERUN since its establishment. This awards scheme is testament to our network’s effort to incentivise and reward practices that go the extra mile in promoting Open Science in academia.
The event was opened by a keynote speech by Dr. Michael Arentoft, Head of Open Science Unit in DG Research and Innovation in the European Commission (EC). Mr. Arentoft provided very interesting information on what to expect in 2023 in Open Science at EU Level.
The five winners were announced by the final evaluation panel, which was composed by:
- Dr. Inma Andrés, Student Programme Manager and Research Advisor at Brunel University London;
- Dr. Kostas Glinos, Former Head of Open Science Unit at DG Research and Innovation at the European Commission;
- Dr. Bregt Saenen, Senior Policy Officer at Science Europe;
- Ms. Katrine Sundsbø, Community Manager at the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
Bregt Saenen and Kat Sundsbø presented the outcomes on behalf of the panel. They shared that it was a pleasure to review these inspiring practices which were developed by researchers and research teams that all share the same goal: facilitation of open and transparent research. The practices are also very diverse, some leading by example in their own research, others are developing tools and guidelines that can be used and replicated by others in the community. They also come from researchers at different stages in their career and from different disciplines. The panel highlighted the fact that all reviewed practices were of exceptionally high quality.
The five winning projects are:
- ROCK – Reproducible Open Coding Kit, submitted by Dr. Szilvia Zörgő & Dr.Gjalt-Jorn Peters from Maastricht University. ROCK is a standard for performing qualitative coding and analyses in a transparent manner. It was developed by the applicants to tackle the lack of Open-Source software tools for qualitative research. Presentation available at this link.
- LERO Open Science Committee, submitted by Prof. Brian Fitzgerald & Dr. Martina Prendergast from the University of Limerick. The LERO Open Science Committee was formed in 2022 to develop centre-wide strategies that lead to increased visibility for researchers, greater opportunities for collaboration and greater transparency in the research process. Presentation available at this link.
- Open Knowledge Initiative by the KIOS Centre of Excellence submitted Dr. Christos Laoudias & Dr. Maria Michalopoulou from the University of Cyprus. The KIOS Centre of excellence at the University of Cyprus launched the Open Knowledge Initiative in 2017 to openly disseminate scientific results beyond the traditional academic dissemination channels. Presentation available at this link.
- ARROR – Advancing Registered Reports in Organisational Research, submitted by Dr. Roman Briker from Maastricht University. ARROR is an Open Science initiative that facilitates the submission of Registered reports (publication format in which researchers receive peer-review before data is collected) in the fields of organizational behavior, management and applied psychology. Presentation available at this link.
- Theodor Fontane Archive, submitted by Dr. Anna Busch & Prof. Peer Tilcke form the University of Potsdam. The Theodor Fontane Archive developed and expanded the research-based digital archive with the aim to improve accessibility to knowledge about the life and works of this central German author of the 19th century. Presentation available at this link.
YERUN would also like to congratulate the other two pre-selected practices of this year’s edition:
- The university library at the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) established a systematic search service, which offers guidance in various aspects of the review process, peer review of researcher’s own systematic searches and more. A systematic search constitutes the data collection of review articles in systematic reviews such as scoping reviews, rapid reviews etc. Without both a good and well documented systematic search the conclusions of the review can be called in to question. The core of the service is systematic searching, in accordance with the PRISMA-S guidelines and peer reviewed in keeping with the PRESS checklist. The systematic search service is available to all academic staff, including PhD-candidates, who are working on a review publication. The practice was submitted by a team of six librarians, led by Ms. Vibeke Saltveit.
- REMODEL (ReproduciblE MODELing) is a self-driven initiative of researchers from the Earth science community from the University of Potsdam. The initiative addresses the fact that Open Science is not discussed enough in this research field, especially when it comes to computation reproducibility. Applicants investigated the causes for that lack of reproducibility and, after a throroughly conducted survey, postulated that this lack of reproducibility might be rooted in insufficient reward within the scientific community, insecurity regarding proper licensing of software and other parts of the research compendium and unawareness about how to make software available in a way that allows for proper attribution of their work. The goal of REMODEL is to put the concepts of Open Science into practice by offering tangible solutions to the research community. The practice was submitted by Dr. Robert Reineke.
The event was closed by a final speech by Prof. Eva Méndez, Deputy Vice-Rector for Scientific Policy at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Prof. Méndez recalled the fact that the plan of a YERUN Open Science Awards scheme was a dream at the beginning of YERUN, and now it’s a reality that makes young research universities stronger and more visible.
YERUN would like to thank all the colleagues who have been involved in the evaluation of last year’s applications. These were colleagues from the YERUN ad hoc group on Open Science and its spin-off group on the Open Science Awards. Their involvement was fundamental in designing the call and, for those members of the final evaluation panel, in the evaluation phase. As always, the added value of the network work is given by the collaboration between the Brussels Office and its members around Europe.
A special thank you goes to the four members of the final evaluation panel who did a fantastic job in reviewing the shortlisted applications and deciding on the winners in a collegial and collaborative spirit.
While only five practices could be awarded this year, YERUN is very grateful to all 37 applicants who have submitted their applications. The initiatives proposed were all extremely valuable, innovative and each of them contributes in its own way to fostering a more open, democratic and trustworthy research environment.
If you missed the ceremony, do not worry! You can see the recording here!