Achievements observed within UNIRI concerning Research(er) Assessment?
Achievements observed within UNIRI concerning Research(er) Assessment? 1024 546 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

The University of Rijeka (UNIRI) is proudly participating as one of the pilot Research Performing Organisations in the Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project. This innovative initiative has developed a Research Assessment Framework (RAF) designed to introduce a comprehensive set of interventions and indicators promoting Open Science practices. The goal is to create a system that incentivises and rewards researchers for embracing these practices.

The OPUS project is currently testing its RAF with five pilot institutions, including UNIRI. In this video interview with a UNIRI representative, we delve into the university’s notable strengths and achievements in the Research(er) Assessment.

Key Highlights from UNIRI’s Participation in OPUS:

  • Innovative Assessment Practices: UNIRI has been at the forefront of integrating innovative research assessment practices that align with Open Science principles.
  • Enhanced Collaboration: The RAF has fostered greater collaboration among researchers, enhancing interdisciplinary projects and partnerships.

The University of Rijeka’s involvement in the OPUS project underscores its commitment to fostering an environment where innovative research practices are encouraged and rewarded. Stay tuned for the full video interview to gain deeper insights into UNIRI’s journey and the impact of the OPUS Research Assessment Framework.

OPUS Project Organises Workshop on “Gender Equality and Open Science”
OPUS Project Organises Workshop on “Gender Equality and Open Science” 1024 850 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

The OPUS project is organising a workshop on “Gender Equality and Open Science,” scheduled for 5 July 2024, from 12:00 to 14:00 CEST. This workshop aims to foster discussions on open science and gender equality, and to collectively reflect on how to integrate gender equality into open science initiatives.

The workshop, led by gender experts from Vilnius University (VU), is a significant step towards promoting gender-sensitive practices in scientific research.

The initiative follows a comprehensive survey distributed to the OPUS pilot research performing and research funding organisations that aims to gather insights on current gender equality policies, plans and their integration with open science.

The event promises to be an interactive session where participants can share ideas and develop actionable strategies.

This effort is part of the OPUS project’s ongoing commitment to advancing gender equality in academia and fostering an inclusive research environment.

European Commission’s Action Plan: The role of OPUS in advancing research assessment reform
European Commission’s Action Plan: The role of OPUS in advancing research assessment reform 1024 507 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

The recent Action Plan by the Commission to implement the ten commitments of the Agreement on Reforming Research Assessment (ARRA) highlights the OPUS project as a particularly relevant initiative for advancing research assessment reform. OPUS will develop a set of interventions for Open Science aimed at creating a system that incentivizes and rewards researchers for adopting practices such as providing open access to research outputs, early and open sharing of research, participating in open peer review, implementing measures to ensure reproducibility of results, and involving all stakeholders in co-creation.

The Action Plan, recently published, outlines the ten commitments of the Action Plan by the Commission to implement the ten commitments of the Agreement on Reforming Research Assessment (ARRA) and highlights the ongoing actions by the European Commission (EC) to address each one, with plans for further implementation in the upcoming Framework Program for Research and Innovation (FP10). The Commission has already made strides in integrating a more comprehensive set of evaluation criteria into the Horizon Europe main Work Programme, which includes assessing Open Science practices, gender considerations, and diverse research outputs. Looking ahead, the Commission has detailed a series of steps to support and advance research assessment reform. These steps include identifying potential improvements in evaluation criteria, enhancing guidance and training for peer reviewers, and fostering mutual learning through collaborations such as the Coalition for Advancing Research Assessment (CoARA).

The Commission has already initiated the funding of projects that contribute to research assessment reforms by evaluating and piloting practices, gathering new evidence, and supporting data sharing and the development of indicators. The following Horizon Europe projects are particularly relevant: PathOS – Open Science Impact Pathways (Research and Innovation action; €1,999,990 EU contribution), OPUS – Open Universal Science (Coordination and Support action; €1,726,898 EU contribution), GraspOS – Next Generation Research Assessment to Promote Open Science (Research and Innovation action; €2,985,441 EU contribution), and SciLake – Democratising and Making Sense of Heterogeneous Scholarly Content (Research and Innovation action; €4,809,450 EU contribution).

The Commission will map the research and innovation projects, as well as other coordination and support actions, already funded through the Horizon Framework Programme that contribute to the reform of research assessment. Additionally, the Commission will identify the main contributions and recommendations from these projects for research assessment reforms and CoARA work, and will also identify potential new research and innovation actions needed.

The implementation of the ten commitments in the Agreement on Reforming Research Assessment (ARRA) will be guided by the ten principles also included in the Agreement:

  • Commitment 1: Recognize the diversity of contributions to, and careers in, research in accordance with the needs and nature of the research.
  • Commitment 2: Base research assessment primarily on qualitative evaluation, with peer review being central, supported by the responsible use of quantitative indicators.
  • Commitment 3: Abandon inappropriate uses of journal- and publication-based metrics in research assessment, particularly the inappropriate uses of Journal Impact Factor (JIF) and h-index.
  • Commitment 4: Avoid the use of rankings of research organizations in research assessment.
  • Commitment 5: Commit resources to reforming research assessment as needed to achieve the organizational changes committed to.
  • Commitment 6: Review and develop research assessment criteria, tools, and processes.
  • Commitment 7: Raise awareness of research assessment reform and provide transparent communication, guidance, and training on assessment criteria and processes as well as their use.
  • Commitment 8: Exchange practices and experiences to enable mutual learning within and beyond the Coalition.
  • Commitment 9: Communicate progress made on adherence to the principles and implementation of the commitments.
  • Commitment 10: Evaluate practices, criteria, and tools based on solid evidence and the state-of-the-art in research on research, and make data openly available for evidence gathering and research.
✨ Celebrating 1000 Followers ✨
✨ Celebrating 1000 Followers ✨ 1024 682 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

Dear Followers,

We’re thrilled to announce a significant milestone: 1000 followers on both Twitter and LinkedIn! Your support means the world to us, and we’re deeply grateful for each and every one of you who has joined us on our journey advocating for open science.

In this era of rapidly advancing technology and interconnectedness, the importance of open science cannot be overstated. Open science refers to the practice of making scientific research, data, and findings accessible to all levels of society, fostering collaboration, transparency, and innovation. It’s about tearing down the barriers that hinder progress and ensuring that the fruits of scientific inquiry are available to everyone, regardless of their background or affiliation.

Why is open science crucial for mankind? The reasons are manifold:

  1. Accelerating Progress: By sharing research openly, scientists can build upon each other’s work more effectively, accelerating the pace of discovery and innovation. This collaborative approach allows us to tackle complex challenges like climate change, public health crises, and technological advancement with greater efficiency and efficacy.
  2. Fostering Transparency: Transparency is a cornerstone of the scientific method. Open science promotes transparency not only in the dissemination of research findings but also in the entire research process, from data collection to analysis. This transparency enhances the credibility and reproducibility of scientific research, fostering trust among scientists and the public alike.
  3. Empowering Global Participation: Open science democratizes access to knowledge, empowering researchers from diverse backgrounds and regions to contribute to scientific discourse. By breaking down geographic and institutional barriers, open science ensures that talent and insights from around the world can contribute to solving humanity’s most pressing challenges.
  4. Driving Innovation: Open science spurs innovation by facilitating interdisciplinary collaboration and serendipitous discoveries. When researchers from different fields come together to share ideas and data, new connections and insights emerge, leading to breakthroughs that might not have been possible otherwise.

With your unwavering support, we pledge to continue championing open science and working towards a future where knowledge knows no bounds. Together, we can build a more equitable, transparent, and collaborative research ecosystem that benefits everyone. 🌟

Thank you for being part of our community and for your commitment to advancing open science. Here’s to the next thousand followers and beyond! 🎉🥳

Photo via Creative Fabrica

OPUS Mutual Learning Event in Vilnius
OPUS Mutual Learning Event in Vilnius 1024 768 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

As part of the OPUS Project’s endeavour to foster mutual learning and collaboration among pilot Research organisations (RPOs) and Research organisations (RFOs), a relevant event is set to take place in Vilnius. The event, scheduled for April 23rd, 2024, aims to facilitate the sharing of experiences and insights gained through the pilot actions undertaken by participating organisations.

The Vilnius Mutual Learning event is designed to facilitate the exchange of experiences among pilot organisations participating in the pilot action. Its primary objective is to foster dialogue around the positive aspects, critical challenges, and areas for improvement observed within each pilot initiative, ultimately leading to good practices and recommendations.

At different pilot phases, stakeholders representing key players will be actively involved in conducting comprehensive after-pilot reviews and consultations to evaluate the outcomes of the pilots. Dissemination efforts will be targeted towards RFOs and RPOs, engaging all identified stakeholders to empower researchers and enhance organisational readiness for Open Science practices.

The Pilot Committee (comprising the Mutual Learning Group) will convene online and in-person to exchange both positive and critical aspects of their pilot initiatives. This exchange is anticipated to yield good practices and recommendations, vital for advancing the project’s objectives and paving the way for other organisations to implement the RAF. The first in-person ML meeting will be on April 23, 2025, and it will be followed by a final mutual learning exercise in person next year.

Introducing the OPUS Researcher Assessment Framework
Introducing the OPUS Researcher Assessment Framework 975 747 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

Gareth O’Neill, Principal Consultant on Open Science at Technopolis Group Belgium (TGB), a partner in the OPUS project, will present the Researcher Assessment Framework at the NRFU Council meeting on March 28, 2024.

This framework, developed collaboratively within the OPUS project, aims to redefine standards and methodologies for evaluating researchers in the scientific community. The initial draft includes a comprehensive set of indicators covering various researcher activities, with a focus on Open Science. The draft is openly accessible online in the OPUS Project Zenodo Community

The NRFU Council meeting provides a vital platform for discussions on research standards and practices. Discussion of the OPUS Researcher Assessment Framework will inform the NRFU Council’s perspectives and potential initiatives, potentially contributing to research assessment reform in Ukraine. Continued engagement with stakeholders and consultations with the research community will refine the framework further.

Contributions of early-career researchers to reforming research assessment
Contributions of early-career researchers to reforming research assessment 845 630 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

Sebastian Dahle from Eurodoc (an OPUS partner) will present on “Contributions of early-career researchers to reforming research assessment via OPUS, SECURE, and CoARA” at the 11th UNICA Scholarly Communication Seminar!

The 11th UNICA Scholarly Communication Seminar, “Open Science and Academic Libraries: Organisational Challenges in an Evolving Research Landscape,” will be kindly hosted by the University of Ljubljana22-24 April 2024.

About the Seminar

Universities have to address Horizon Europe Open Science policy, legislation updates and policies in the EU Member States, transformative agreements, diamond open access publishing, infrastructures, and other aspects of Open Science. Together with their libraries, they are facing organisational challenges that increasingly involve international environments and cooperation.

The seminar will focus on sharing Open Science good practices related to the management of academic libraries, the role of European Universities alliances, and the reform of research assessment:

  • How can universities and academic libraries best manage Open Science services to support their communities?
  • What are the most significant Open Science initiatives developed within the European Universities alliances in which UNICA member universities are involved?
  • How will COARA and the new research assessment model in the EU help drive Open Science?

Participation is free (no registration fee applies) and open to both UNICA member universities and non-UNICA institutions. 

See more!

OPUS Project Team Members: FAIR Data Training Course with EMBRC
OPUS Project Team Members: FAIR Data Training Course with EMBRC 990 674 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

Two key members of the OPUS project, Corina Moya Falcon and Silvia Martín from PLOCAN, are actively participating in an exclusive online FAIR training course organised by the European Marine Biological Resource Centre (EMBRC), January 23-25, 2024. The course, spanning today and tomorrow, aims to equip marine biologists with the essential skills to make their data Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Re-usable (FAIR).

PLOCAN, as the coordinator of the OPUS project, has taken the initiative to further enhance the capabilities of its team members by enrolling them in this practical and hands-on course. The training, hosted both at the InnovOcean Campus in Oostende, Belgium, and virtually, is focused on empowering marine scientists with the knowledge and tools necessary to optimise the longevity and reach of their data.

The EMBRC course dives deep into the significance of making data FAIR, emphasising the broader audience and extended lifespan that FAIR data can achieve. Participants will be guided through the intricacies of ensuring data is not only accessible to specialists but also to non-specialists. The course will cover the essential aspects of making data Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable through a series of practical exercises.

By actively participating in this course, the OPUS team members aim to leverage their newfound knowledge and skills to enhance the quality and impact of the OPUS project.

OPUS Featured at ISC’s Open Science Roundup in December 2023
OPUS Featured at ISC’s Open Science Roundup in December 2023 784 732 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

In the latest edition of our Open Science roundup, the International Science Council and Moumita Koley brings us a celebration of the conclusion of the Year of Open Science and highlights the OPUS project as a key player in reshaping the research landscape.

Explore a thought-provoking editorial discussing the OPUS project and its substantial influence in promoting Open Science practices by clicking here.

The OPUS project, initiated to establish a framework recognising and rewarding Open Science practices, aims to revolutionise how research and researchers are evaluated at Research Performing Organisations (RPOs) and Research Funding Organisations (RFOs). Through its mission, OPUS encourages researchers to engage in practices such as sharing research early, participating in open peer review, and ensuring the reproducibility of results.

Led by The Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (PLOCAN) and executed by a consortium of eighteen organizations, OPUS is making waves as a catalyst for change in the world of Open Science. It goes beyond being just a project, actively influencing how research is perceived, evaluated, and rewarded within the Open Science landscape.

Financed by the European Union through a GRANT AGREEMENT with the European Research Executive Agency (REA), OPUS is positioned as a transformative force in the Open Science era. Project number: 101058471.

Gordon Dalton presents OPUS Project and Future Goals at Open Science Event in Vilnius
Gordon Dalton presents OPUS Project and Future Goals at Open Science Event in Vilnius 1024 768 Open and Universal Science (OPUS) Project

Vilnius, Lithuania – Gordon Dalton, the OPUS project coordinator at PLOCAN, took the stage at the “Discover Open Science Activities in Lithuania” event today to showcase the notable achievements of the OPUS project over the past year and shed light on the future of Open Science principles.

In his presentation, Mr. Dalton not only highlighted the project’s accomplishments but also outlined a visionary path where Open Science and researcher assessment frameworks will take center stage. The OPUS team’s efforts, ranging from developing the Researcher Assessment Framework to implementing interventions, were showcased to provide a comprehensive understanding of the project’s trajectory.

OPUS, in collaboration with three Research Performing Organizations (RPOs) and two Research Funding Organizations (RFOs), is actively piloting the implementation of the Research Assessment Framework. The initiative places a strong emphasis on practically integrating Open Science Principles within these pilot organizations, with the aim of influencing other institutions to provide incentives and rewards for researchers embracing Open Science.

During the presentation, Gordon Dalton delved into the complexity of the Researcher Assessment Framework and interventions, setting the stage for the tangible impact that OPUS aspires to make in the academic landscape.

One noteworthy aspect of OPUS is its commitment to action plans and mutual learning exercises. The project is executing testing phases for indicators and interventions within its pilot organizations, a process that will be detailed in Deliverable D4.3 – “Action Plans to Implement the Pilots – Final.” This strategic approach ensures a systematic implementation of the Research Assessment Framework, with OPUS taking on a direct role in providing training and resources while closely monitoring progress and offering ongoing support.

OPUS is committed to advancing Open Science and reshaping academia. The project’s teamwork and hands-on initiatives highlight its dedication to turning Open Science principles into action, benefiting researchers and the wider scientific community.

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