The Institutionalized Racism of Scholarly Publishing | A Way of Happening
ab1630's bookmarks 2018-06-10
"In 2002 the African scholarly publisher, Academic Journals, began publishing peer reviewed journals. By 2011 they had grown to be a considerably sized publisher, publishing 107 journals with more than 220 employees, and having become an important publishing platform for African researchers. Then disaster struck. They were added to Jeffery Beall’s list of “Potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access publishers”. (Beall’s list was taken down in early 2017. You can find an archived version of it via the Internet Archive’s Web Archive) The impact was immediate....
How do we fix this?
1. Reconsider how we talk about predatory publishers and stop recommending blacklists. A lot of the instruction I’ve seen about predatory publishers lately is based off a “Trust your gut” and “If it feels wrong, don’t trust it” approach.
We need to stop this. We aren’t objective beings and systematic racism has a lot of influence here. We need a “Look at this journal critically and be aware of your own bias” approach. Evaluate the journal critically based on the content and not it’s spelling or if the interface feels “familiar”.
2. Use other databases for research beyond just Scopus and Web of Science. We know they have flaws. Use DOAJ, Google Scholar, or other search indexes that capture the output from international publishers and researchers as well. Here’s a great list of some of these sources from Andy Nobes.
3. Make an effort to search non-English sources. For example, Amano et al recommend including speakers of a wide range of languages when doing systematic reviews.
4. Push publishers/vendors to include more of these journals in their databases (EBSCO is good at this). Do whatever we can to help these journals get better indexed and discovered. For example, a small thing a libraries can do, that makes a big difference, is to activate all of DOAJ in their knowledgebase.
5. Talk more about issues of privilege and discrimination in the scholarly publishing process. Especially in information literacy sessions. Bring these topics directly into these sessions when we talk about how authority is constructed and contextual.
6. Talk to these journals and researchers. Find out how we can help. What we need to work on. Bring them to the table. Give them more say in these decisions. Stop us from making the same mistakes again...."