The scientific refereeing process can be tedious, time-consuming and isn’t very rewarding.
There are major systemic problems associated with peer review that are negatively affecting scientific credibility.
Getting input from well-connected academics and researchers is crucial to a paper’s scientific impact.
The scientific impact of a research paper increases with every additional commenter who provides feedback – particularly if the comment came from a well-connected academic.
Research shows that Wikipedia is one of the most read sources of medical information by the general public across the world.
Medical entries on Wikipedia are widely consulted across the world. Doctors and medical researchers need to make efforts to ensure the content on the online collaborative encyclopedia is accurate.
When several South African universities merged, it was hoped this would improve access and equality. It had the opposite effect.
Ancient fermentation techniques are an example of African chemistry in action.
Knowledge is power. If you own it, you can control those without it. Since so much knowledge about Africa doesn't sit on the continent, it's apparent that Africa lacks power in this regard.
Sampling is a powerful scientific tool - when it’s used honestly.
Some water researchers are ignoring the evidence offered by sampling if it doesn't fit their preconceived notions. But science should always be honest and open.
Professor Peter Higgs, joint winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics.
The unavoidable regime of publication pervades contemporary academic life across the world. While presented as a virtuous thing, it can actually suffocate the academic profession.
What is the best way to return ‘Africa’ to African Studies?
African Studies remains a colonised space rife with misrepresentation, homogenisation and essentialising about Africa.
More medical experts should contribute to Wikipedia to ensure its health pages are accurate.
The academic medical community largely views Wikipedia with suspicion. But some traditional journals are starting to take the site more seriously – and some journals work very closely with it.
Sci-Hub, a free online repository of academic articles, is the subject of a battle at the heart of open access.
What’s the point of academics producing amazing research if they don’t share it widely with the general public?
Very few academics do a great deal to share their often important and relevant research with the general public. What's holding them back?
Too many academic careers are shaped around writing journal articles nobody reads and planning twice-weekly lectures to a diminishing class of students.
Prime Minister Turnbull has signalled a desire to move away from a 'publish or perish' academic culture toward one that prioritises public impact and engagement. It's a challenge scholars should embrace.
There is amazing research and knowledge coming out of Africa – you just need to know where to look.
African research is largely invisible, kept in the shadows by publishing barriers and structural obstacles. A platform built in Brazil and rolled out across the developing world could be the solution.
There are sharks in the research water – predatory journals are becoming more common in Africa.
African academics and universities have been caught in the predatory journal web. It's time for the continent's universities to start taking this threat to their integrity seriously.
Access to free, accurate information is as important to learning as access to desks, chairs and science labs.
A lack of access to quality, peer-reviewed information can actually contribute to societal and educational inequality. How can Open Access help?
A majority of academic research is still locked away from public eyes.
We have the technology and the will to expand open access to publicly funded research, but large vested interests are still putting up stiff resistance.
Somali university students celebrate their graduation. Universities that fare well on national measures may be ignored by international ranking systems.
The news that African universities will soon be ranked has generated a great deal of hype. But the initiative seems likely to be doomed from the start.
Pay wall or no pay wall? Students study at the Humboldt University Library in Berlin, one of the most advanced scientific libraries in Germany.
Much of what's being said in support of open access publishing misses one key point: that is there is always a value chain and costs are incurred. Someone somewhere is paying for open access.
Open access is crucial for South Africa and other developing countries.
South Africa does some amazing research but cannot share it globally because of restrictive copyright laws or unreasonable policies and embargo periods set by publishers that limit their audience.
If academics are willing to steal others’ ideas and concepts, what’s stopping their students from doing the same?
Academics' own propensity for plagiarism may be contributing to high levels of student plagiarism.