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[19 Jul 2016 | Comments Off on Squaring Circles: The economics and governance of scholarly infrastructures | ]

This is a version of the paper I’ve had accepted for SciDataCon in a session on the sustainability of Research Data Infrastructures. It was also the basis for the session that I helped lead with Simon Coles at the Jisc-CNI meeting in mid-July in Oxford. The original version was quite short and skips over some of the background material and context. I’m hoping to work it up into a full paper at some point soon so any comments are welcome.
Summary
Infrastructures for data, such as repositories, curation systems, aggregators, indexes and standards are …

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[28 Jan 2016 | Comments Off on Where are the pipes? Building Foundational Infrastructures for Future Services | ]
Where are the pipes? Building Foundational Infrastructures for Future Services

Cite as “Bilder G, Lin J, Neylon C (2016) Where are the pipes? Building Foundational Infrastructures for Future Services, retrieved [date], //cameronneylon.net/blog/where-are-the-pipes-building-foundational-infrastructures-for-future-services/ ‎”
You probably don’t think too much about where all the services to your residence run. They go missing from view until something goes wrong. But how do we maintain them unless they are identified? An entire utilities industry, which must search for utility infrastructure, hangs in the balance on this knowledge. There’s even an annual competition, a rodeo no less, to crown the best infrastructure locators in the land, rewarding those …

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[26 Aug 2015 | 3 Comments | ]
What exactly is infrastructure? Seeing the leopard’s spots

We ducked a fundamental question raised by our proposal for infrastructure principles: “what exactly counts as infrastructure?” Of course this is not a straightforward question and part of the reason for leaving it in untouched in the introductory post. We believe that any definition must entail a much broader discussion from the community. But we wanted to kick this off with a discussion of an important part of the infrastructure puzzle that we think is often missed. That the infrastructure we should care most about is often a layer below where our attention is focused.

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[23 Feb 2015 | 14 Comments | ]
Principles for Open Scholarly Infrastructures

Everything we have gained by opening content and data will be under threat if we allow the enclosure of scholarly infrastructures. We propose a set of principles by which Open Infrastructures to support the research community could be run and sustained. – Geoffrey Bilder, Jennifer Lin, Cameron Neylon

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[13 Apr 2013 | 5 Comments | ]
What’s the right model for shared scholarly communications infrastructure?

There have been a lot of electrons spilled over the Elsevier Acquisition of Mendeley. I don’t intend to add too much to that discussion but it has provoked for me an interesting train of thought which seems worth thinking through. For what its worth my views of the acquisition are not too dissimilar to those of Jason Hoyt and John Wilbanks, and I recommend their posts. I have no doubt that the Mendeley team remain focussed on their vision and I hope they do well with it. And even with …

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[8 Nov 2011 | 3 Comments | ]

Michael Nielsen’s talk at Science Online was a real eye opener for many of us who have been advocating for change in research practice. He framed the whole challenge of change as an example of a well known problem, that of collective action. So how do we take this view and use it to effect the changes we want to see in research practice? And are we prepared to address our own collective action problem and place the overall goals above our own projects and approaches?

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[13 Jun 2011 | 2 Comments | ]

As a wooly headed social liberal with a strong belief in the power of the internet to connect people it is probably natural for to me have some sympathy for the ideas behind the “Big Society” espoused by the UK Prime Minister. The concept here is that many of the support roles traditionally taken by or at least mediated by government can be more effectively and efficiently provided in the community by direct interactions between members of the public. The potential of the web to inform, support critical debate, and …

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[6 Jul 2017 | No Comment | ]

One of the things I find frustrating about discussions of economics in scholarly publishing is the way that discussions that are built around critique of capital models or neoliberalism are dismissed as impractical. Most recently Stuart Lawson’s interesting provocation, Against Capital, got a range of dismissive comments as being irrelevant because it required the overthrow of the capitalist system.
I find this, alongside another kind of response, most commonly from people in the business of scholarly publishing that such criticisms represent a failure to understand the financial realities of publishing, frustrating …

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[16 Jun 2017 | 8 Comments | ]

The following will come across as a rant. Which it is. But it’s a well intentioned rant. Please bear in mind that I care about good practice in data sharing, documentation, and preservation. I know there are many people working to support it, generally under-funded, often having to justify their existence to higher-ups who care more about the next Glam Mag article than whether there’s any evidence to support the findings. But, and its an important but, those political fights won’t become easier until researchers know those people exist, value …

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[5 Jun 2017 | 2 Comments | ]

This is my submitted paper to ElPub, a conference running in Cyprus over the next few days. I’m posting it here as a kind-of-preprint. Comments and thoughts are welcome. The version in the proceedings is available online as part of Chan and Loizides (eds) Expanding Perspectives on Open Science: Communities, Cultures and Diversity in Concepts and Practices.

Abstract
The debate over the meaning, and value, of open movements has intensified. The fear of co-option of various efforts from Open Access to Open Data is driving a reassessment and re-definition of what is …