Scholarly Communication Primer for Sociologists - Google Docs
peter.suber's bookmarks 2019-01-28
"Scholarly publishing takes place in an institutional arena that is opaque to its practitioners. As readers, writers, reviewers, and editors, we have no clear view of the system within which we’re working. Researchers starting their careers receive (if they’re lucky) folk wisdom and mythology handed down from advisor to advisee, geared more toward individual success (or survival) than toward attaining a systemic perspective. They may learn how to get their work into the right journals or books, but often don’t learn why that is the outcome that matters for their careers, how the field arrived at that decision, and what the alternatives are – or should be. Gaining a wider perspective is important both for shaping individual careers and for confronting the systematic problems we face as a community of knowledge creators and purveyors.
This primer starts from the premise that sociologists, especially those early in their careers, need to learn about the system of scholarly communication. And that sociology can help us toward that goal. Understanding the political economy of the system within which publication takes place is necessary for us to fulfill our roles as citizens of the research community, as people who play an active role in shaping the future of that system, consciously or not. Responsible citizenship requires learning about the institutional actors in the system and how they are governed, as well as who pays and who profits within the field, and who wins or loses...."