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Why inequality in science is a good thing - if you care about progress

DOES inequality in the output of scientists matter? Inequality is a fashionable topic, and evidence for its existence is keenly sought in all sorts of places. John Ioannidis, a health policy researcher at Stanford, and his colleagues have found it in the research outputs of their fellow academics. As they detail in a paper in the prestigious journal PLoS ONE, they searched the entire published scientific literature in academic journals over the period from 1996 to 2011.
   
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When Patients Fear EHR

In healthcare, the fear of new technology and an ever-increasing awareness of security and privacy concerns are driving patients away from electronic health records (EHRs). However, this doesn't have to be the case. In a column for InformationWeek, CIO Mansur Hasib shows why patients should embrace EHRs.
   
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Journals weigh up double-blind peer review

Some researchers have long worried that manuscripts submitted for publication are judged not on the quality of the work but on the reputation of the author submitting it. Although authors are rarely told who is reviewing their work, reviewers generally are informed of whose papers they are evaluating. But last week an article in Conservation Biology revealed that journal would be considering 'double blind' peer review - in which neither the reviewer nor the reviewed knows the other's identity. Double-blind peer review is common in the humanities and social sciences, but very few scientific journals have adopted it.
   
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Academic publishers draft and release their own Open Access licences

Creative Commons (CC) has been working really well for open access, so why is STM creating their competing versions? In a policy environment that is seeing more and more requirements towards open access, this act seems to be an attempt by the academic publishing industry to stop the meteoric rise of Creative Commons content by providing a competing set of licences that would initially appear to fulfil the OA requirements set by funding bodies and governments.
   
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Incentivizing Peer Review: The Last Obstacle for Open Access Science

The alternative vision - of "open science" - has two key properties: the uninhibited sharing of research findings, and a new peer review system that incorporates the best of the scientific community's feedback. Several groups have made progress on the former, but the latter has proven particularly difficult given the current incentive structure. The currency of scientific research is the number of papers you've published and their citation counts - the number of times other researchers have referred to your work in their own publications. The emphasis is on creation of new knowledge - a worthy goal, to be sure - but substantial contributions to the quality, packaging, and contextualisation of that knowledge in the form of peer review goes largely unrecognised.
   
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