Predatory Journals Revisited

I recently was asked by a library user about how to distinguish a good publisher’s or conference organizer’s invitation from a predatory one. She often receives emails inviting her to review journal submissions, present a meeting abstract, publish a paper, or speak at a conference.

These types of invitations continue to pose a challenge for the research community and those wanting to share their research findings. Typically, a publication that proactively pursues research manuscripts from the scientific and medical communities, falsifies information about their editorial board, has a poor peer-review system, and is focused on obtaining publication costs and assuring the researcher that their work will get published, are the ones that should raise a red flag.

What can a researcher do to ensure they submit their manuscript to a reputable journal?  There is a website entitled, “Think. Check. Submit.”, which was developed by several organizations focused on scholarly communications activities. They partnered together in response to issues involving deceptive publishing, and developed an awareness campaign and easy-to-use checklist that researchers can consult when investigating whether a journal can be trusted.

The MSK Library staff can also help researchers to ensure they submit to the right journal by investigating email invitations received by authors. We can check impact factors, where the journals/conferences are indexed, contact information, and editorial board members’ credentials and subject expertise.

If you need to distinguish between trustworthy and predatory journals, don’t hesitate to reach out and ASK US.

Donna Gibson
Director of Library Services

Do You Know Any MSK Authors? Ever Wonder about MSK Research Activities?

The 2018 Synapse Publications Report is now available to help answer these questions! This online report compiled by the Library provides an analysis and documents the publications produced by MSK researchers, clinicians, nurses, and other healthcare professionals for the year in review. The final bibliography includes 4,602 works, comprised of references to research and conference papers, reviews, meeting abstracts, books and book sections.

Synapse is a public facing resource and the authoritative bibliographic database developed and maintained by a skilled team of information professionals. Their ultimate goal is to track the wealth of knowledge attributed to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

I hope that by browsing the 2018 Synapse Publications Report, readers will gain a sense of the contributions of MSK authors to the ever-growing body of scholarly literature. Readers can also view past reports.

Your thoughts about this report would be welcomed — feel free to send me an email and let me know what you think.

Donna Gibson
Director of Library Services

Disseminating and Sharing Research via Preprints

This is not my first post on preprints and I suspect it will not be my last. By definition, a preprint is a draft manuscript that is shared publicly (often via a preprint server) before it has been peer reviewed. For the researcher, there are several benefits for posting a preprint to include, early credit and visibility for the research done, and an opportunity to obtain feedback prior to submitting the manuscript to a journal for publication. In my professional readings this month, I’ve noted a couple of interesting articles about preprints.

Exciting News! A new preprint server is scheduled to go live on June 25 and is now accepting manuscripts. medRxiv, a collaboration between Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Yale University, and the BMJ will focus on the medical sciences. This resource was developed with a wealth of past experience from the founders of bioRxiv, who have been working on medRxiv since 2017 to deliver a platform that would share new research while safeguarding concerns of making non-peer reviewed clinical research available. View a short video (10:55 min) from other collaborators entitled, “Research Preprint Server Launches at Yale University”, to learn more about medRxiv.

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