The scientific department of the university did not accept the publication. What should a scientist do?

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Are you familiar with the situation when the scientific department of your higher educational institution did not accept your published article in a foreign journal that is indexed in Scopus or Web of Science? If yes, then this video is just for you. Why is this happening, what are the consequences of this. Read on to learn more!

In the scientific community, there is a rule that the university will credit a scientific publication to a scientist only if it is approved by the scientific department. The experience of researchers indicates that, due to insufficient expertise from the scientific department, this leads to many controversial decisions and cyclical situations that create problems with the implementation of the scientific publication plan of both the researcher and the university. Let us take a look at two of the most common negative situations that affect the successful interaction of scientists and scientific departments.

Situation #1: Science department declares that journal publication from Beall's list will not be accepted

What is Beall's List?

Jeffrey Beall is a US librarian who published an article in the Nature journal in 2012 that raised the question of the existence of open access predatory journals. He created a website where he posted a list of such journals and developed a methodology for recognising unscrupulous publications. But it is not entirely clear on what basis he carried out an examination and so hastily accused over 1,200 journals and 1,100 publishing houses of predatory activity.

Beall's blog is purely his personal opinion, which has not been verified by the governing organisation that is related to scientific publishing. At that time, his competence was insufficient for a large-scale examination of scientific journals, he did not have a degree or title, and therefore special experience in publishing.

List relevance

Jeffrey Beall's statement and his listing caused a huge response in the scientific community, but in 2017 the site that hosted the data on these journals was removed. Beall made this decision himself. And those sites that today are "mirrors" of his work are not sources that can be trusted.

Beall's List was created for scientometric databases to aid in the analysis of publications. And, perhaps, at first, it was so. But today scientometric platforms create special professional systems (Radar) and committees (Committee on Publication Ethics) at the state level, which purposefully analyse the activities of journals. Every year they evaluate the publications, see if they adhere to the conditions for inclusion in the database. Journals are cautioned if experts see deviations in their activities. This analysis is carried out in an absolutely adequate and professional way without emotional statements that can cause irreparable damage to the reputation of the publishing house, journals, and scientists.

The databases publish lists of excluded journals annually, which you can find on their website. During the selection of a publication for publication, carefully verify the indexing of the journal at the time of its consideration for publication and draw information from trusted and official sources.

Situation 2: The scientist published an article not from the list of journals recommended by the scientific department

The article of the scientist passed scientific review; it was published in the journal to which they submitted their manuscript. But the scientific department does not accept the publication, since it has its own specific list of recommended journals.

Then the question is: why should scientists not initially receive this list so that they do not waste their time and money? After all, agreeing on a journal for publication upon the adoption of an article or changing the list is fraught with consequences for the author. If the scientific department refuses to accept the published material, the researcher has to look for the journal again. They are again waiting for peer review, which affects the timely implementation of their scientific publication plan. At this time, the scientist could continue their activities and prepare the next study, which would go to the treasury of the university's scientific rating. But things are different.

And the next question is arising: why do universities keep such scientific departments that are not interested in successful, timely scientific publication activities of scientists, and in the active development of the rating of their own university? Indeed, to avoid wasting precious time, money and senseless cyclicality in submitting an article "blindly", one can use different methods to inform researchers about publication conditions, lists of recommended journals, using the university website, stands at departments, write manuals.

Expertise of the scientific department

Undoubtedly, a lot of information work is carried out in scientific departments, theoretical and practical problems in various scientific directions are being investigated. These important developments are aimed at filling and preparing the educational process. But the scientific publication activity of the university requires a serious approach to its conduct. Does the scientific department have enough expertise not to accept the article, to reject the journal in which it was published?

We must admit that not every university can afford a full-fledged scientometric department. Employees who have other basic functionality are most often involved in it, and this work is just an additional load for them. Such semi-professional departments cannot provide high-quality verification of scientific publications, search for journals, train employees, graduate students, students in scientific publication subtleties. Today, many foreign universities resort to the services of companies that provide scientific outsourcing services. The company acts as a full-fledged scientific department of a university or scientific organisation. This concept has long been introduced into their activities by leading universities around the world.

The survey has shown that every 8 out of 10 scientific departments are unqualified in the issue of scientometrics and scientific publications. Therefore, if you need to check the competence of your scientific department, its recommendations or help the department formalise them, contact our Scientific Publications company using the chat or any form of communication on the site. During the day, experts will answer you to help you successfully implement all your scientific tasks.

As a reminder, we have recently released an article “All about the Hirsch index”.

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