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Welcome to Perspectives: A Fresh Look at Scholarly Communication

24th February 2015
By Phill Jones
Launch of Shuttle Atlantis

Over the past year or so at Digital Science, I’ve been struck by how rapidly scholarly communication is changing. After what seemed like many years of promise, we seem to be finally at the tipping point where the promise of the internet and its associated technologies fundamentally change not only how we communicate science and scholarly output in general, but also how we interact with science as a society and even how researchers themselves do their work. There are many questions surrounding these changes. What exactly is happening? Why is it happening now? What will happen in the future? How do we all adapt to stay relevant into the future?

It is for this reason that we at Digital Science have decided, following on from the re-launch of our blogging platform last year to create a new, ever so slightly experimental blog called ‘Perspectives’. The purpose of this new exciting forum is to bring together a series of diverse voices representing all the major stakeholders in scholarly communication. By creating a place to think and write for publishers, librarians, academics, funders and everybody else involved in scientific communication, we hope to foster understanding of each others perspectives in order to have more meaningful conversations about how to address the issues that affect us all.

For 6 months, The Digital Science outreach and communications team have been working to bring content to our guest blog on a series of issues ranging from the increasing trend towards greater funder mandates and how that ultimately drives the needs of authors and readers, the risks and opportunities offered by open data for both individual researchers and for learned societies, and the future of social networks for scientists. We’ve even discussed what the Norwegian Research Council have against hybrid open access publishing and wondered why librarians and postdocs apparently know so little about one another.

An echo chamber. We don’t like them.

This work started off as an experiment to see if there really is a demand for greater cross-stakeholder conversations. From our readership numbers and average page view times, it’s clear that yes, there are a lot of people out there on all sides that want to break down the walls of their respective echo-chambers and get to know each other a little better.

So today, we’re proud to announce the launch of the Perspectives blog, but we’re also asking for a favour. We’d like to recruit a number of volunteer bloggers from among librarians, funders, publishers, academics, technology venders, consultants, and just about anybody else with an interest in scholarly communication. If you’ve got something to say, whether as a one off post or perhaps as a regular contributor, drop us an email at

With any luck, posts will be released every Tuesday, look out for them; it should be fun.


Image credit for ‘An echo chamber’:  “Hallraum TU Dresden 2009-06-21” by Henry Mühlpfordt – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons –

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