Why communication scholars care about open science

Why communication scholars care about open science

Communication scholars are concerned about the impact of open science. They fear extra work stress, public data abuse, and toxic masculinity.

Although communication scholars support the goals of open science (see box), a number of international search Pain points as well. For the study, an international group of scientists – including UvA researcher Claes de Vreese – conducted a survey among communication scientists from 36 countries. More than 80 percent of the 330 respondents said they had “little” or “little” knowledge about open science. According to the authors, the fact that only 10% have absolutely no knowledge of open science is a sign that (communication) scientists know more and more about the principles of open science.

a little sharing

According to the survey, the communication scientists surveyed do not necessarily have a negative attitude towards open science. But their private participation is small. In practice, most respondents do not get any further from sharing research materials, such as protocols for experiments. Respondents question other aspects of open science, such as the sharing of data sets. One survey participant said it takes a long time to prepare public data sets for fellow scientists, when “there is already enough pressure to produce things quickly.”

Some respondents fear that their data will be misused

Another concern relates to the potential for misuse of public data. Some respondents fear that other scientists may use their data to steal valuable research ideas. Other respondents fear that malicious parties will misuse their data, for example by misinterpreting the data for their own benefit.

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What is open science?
Open Flag is a movement within science that focuses on transparency. There doesn’t seem to be a clear definition of open science, but recurring themes include openness and collaboration. Practical examples of open science are publications with open access and active sharing of research data with colleagues and citizen science. According to proponents, open science leads to a more accessible, fairer science.

against commitment

For several years now, the government, NWO University and universities in the Netherlands have been focusing on open access publications. But mandatory open access publication is not something that the telecommunications scientists surveyed support. This could lead to false incentives, as can already be seen with the pay-to-play concept: authors are guaranteed publication after paying a certain fee to the publisher, without peer review by their fellow scientists. Another concern about open access is giving publishers more power. so wrote Science Guide about Attractive bargain between Dutch universities and Elsevier, at a cost of €16 million per year.

Toxic masculinity

Finally, the post’s authors expressed concern about the toxic masculinity casting a shadow over open science. According to some respondents, “a small, noisy, privileged group carefully selects what” Good Research’. These are mostly white men who use the open science debate to strengthen their grip on science. “It often feels like white men are shouting at me an open flag,” one respondent said. According to the authors, this toxic masculinity may come at the expense of vulnerable groups such as women, although more research is needed to confirm this.

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