Category Archives: Science

OpenAlex: a free alternative to Scopus and Web of Science?

Scientific research tools such as Scopus, Web of Science or Dimensions have now become established. Many researchers have stored complex search queries in their favourite database. However, the cost of these platforms is a significant item in the budgets of libraries and research institutions.

What if there was a bold, free alternative to these expensive tools? Actually, there is, and there has been for some time, but only recently has it started to gain traction: OpenAlex.

OpenAlex can be defined as “a fully open catalogue of the global research system”. It has been maintained by OurResearch since around mid-2021 and the data comes from the Microsoft Academic Graph, Crossref, institutional repositories (via OAI-PMH) and much more. OpenAlex has access to a large amount of data and is based on persistent IDs (DOIs, ORCID, ROR, etc.).

Don’t be fooled by the minimalist interface and the absence of corporate design colours. OpenAlex concentrates on the essentials and does its job very well. Until a few months ago, queries could only be made via the API. Now it has a graphical user interface that is constantly being updated and improved. I have an account where I can save my queries. I find it simple and useful, but perhaps it is still too little for a researcher. However, development continues.

I then ran some tests and entered the name of TU Chemnitz to see the results:

Here the results from Scopus:

Very good. We have about 6,000 more results than Scopus. However, this does not mean that all the works displayed are actually related to Chemnitz University of Technology. Quality control still needs to be improved in OpenAlex. However, I was also impressed by the presence of some graphics.

If you are a researcher, I invite you to enter your name in OpenAlex and check that all the data is correct. It is also possible to calculate your own H-index with this script in Jupyter Notebook (if you need help, write to me).

I also tested this script, which uses the data from OpenAlex to show which co-operations TU Chemnitz has with other universities worldwide. Here is the result:

This is only a first approach to OpenAlex, and it is necessary to deepen the knowledge of the data structure and quality control. There is a lot of potential in it and its possibilities are currently limited, but it is an interesting project and it is worth giving it a chance.

Monitoring – Financing – Consultation: How the University Library supports Open Access

The National Open-Access-Monitor provided by the Central Library of the Research Center Jülich offers opportunities for analyses of publications, costs and citations with regard to Open Access in Germany. Currently, data concerning scientific articles marked by a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) are processed. The sources comprise i.a. the Web of Science and the database Dimensions.
Chemnitz University Library makes use of this monitor for the analysis of Open-Access publication numbers and costs but also for the assessment of the market and the allocation of costs between the different publishers. The results are of significant importance for the calculation of the Publication Fund of Chemnitz University of Technology, the conclusion of transformation contracts with publishers and the application for funding resources.

Fig. 1 Open-Access status Chemnitz University of Technology, 2017-2021, OA Monitor, Dimensions

Den Beitrag weiterlesen Monitoring – Financing – Consultation: How the University Library supports Open Access

The International Open Access Week 2020 at Chemnitz University of Technology – a summary

This year’s “International Open Access Week” (IOAW), which took place from 19 October to 25 October 2020, was centred around the motto “Open with Purpose: Taking Action to Build Structural Equity and Inclusion”, which emphasised the political and social implications of Open Science and focused on the philosophy behind the term “Openness” as a set of values.
Den Beitrag weiterlesen The International Open Access Week 2020 at Chemnitz University of Technology – a summary

Desired award for the Chemnitz University Library

For the second time, the University Library received the Open Library Badge of the initiative of the same name for more openness in libraries.
We are proud to again meet the revised criteria of 2016 in the required number and beyond. The Open Science Team has taken up the new challenge
and is implementing openness in the following contexts, for example:

Additional points are displayed as best practices on the badge page.

The award is an incentive for us to further expand the Open Science Network at Chemnitz University of Technology, because open science already permeates all disciplines in science and research. Digital teaching, open educational materials are two of many exciting topics.

For the upcoming International Open Access Week from 19-25 October 2020, we will again be offering various virtual services.

You can find our team at:

The new DEAL contract with Springer Nature – its many advantages for Open Access publishing and how you benefit from them

The boost for Open Access publishing through the DEAL contracts is now entering its second phase. After Wiley, another major academic publisher, Springer Nature, has negotiated a comprehensive agreement with the DEAL project. The contract is a so-called publish and read agreement. It consists of two components: In addition to the possibility of publishing in around 2,500 Springer Nature journals in Open Access (“Publish”), it also includes access to almost all of the publisher’s journal content (with exception of all “Nature” branded journals) that is still in Closed Access and therefore only available by subscription (“Read”). As in the case of Wiley, Chemnitz University of Technology (TU Chemnitz) is also participating in this new DEAL contract.
Due to the publishing component, it is possible for researchers at TU Chemnitz to publish their articles in Springer Nature journals in Open Access with very little administrative effort. The costs incurred are automatically covered by the budget of the University Library, for which you do not have to submit applications or forward invoices to the library. As a researcher, you therefore benefit from the many advantages of Open Access publishing and are additionally relieved of the bureaucratic hurdles associated sometimes with Open Access publishing, so that you can focus fully on your research.
Below we would like to briefly outline the most important cornerstones of the publishing component of the agreement and explain the practical significance of these for you as an author.

Den Beitrag weiterlesen The new DEAL contract with Springer Nature – its many advantages for Open Access publishing and how you benefit from them

Research data management in Saxony

Homepage SaxFDM – (in German only)

In mid-January, Manuela Queitsch from the Service Center Research Data in Dresden visited the Chemnitz University Library. In her lecture and the subsequent discussion, she focused on the question of what services are already available in Saxony for scientists dealing with research data.
Den Beitrag weiterlesen Research data management in Saxony