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Research Idea
GO-PUB: Open-Select-Submit
expand article infoDasapta Erwin Irawan, Andri Putra Kesmawan§, Mochammad Tanzil Multazam|, Eric Kunto
‡ Faculty of Earth Sciences and Technology, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Bandung, Indonesia
§ Universitas Gadjah Mada and Relawan Jurnal Indonesia, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
| Universitas Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo and Relawan Jurnal Indonesia, Sidoarjo, Indonesia
¶ Universitas Widya Dharma Klaten and Relawan Jurnal Indonesia, Klaten, Indonesia
Open Access

Abstract

An online ride-hailing app is a must-have app on your mobile devices, because it's features have been extended to meet almost modern urban needs. What if we could adopt the same features and functionalities for the academic publishing ecosystem. We proudly introduce the conceptual of GO-PUB. GO-PUB is an online app that provides a spatial database of scholarly journal publishers in Indonesia and to connect it with potential authors. Potential authors could find the perfect journal near their locations, complete with supporting pieces of information about the journal publishing system. The concept of GO-PUB is open source and cross platforms, hosted in public repository to make sure everyone could share their knowledge and contribution to the project.

Keywords

mobile app, academic journal, scientific ecosystem, Indonesia

Background

Indonesia's academic ecosystem is unique. The sum of Indonesian journal is second best, after UK, based on DOAJ. Most of them are online journals. But, due to the large number, authors need to have a list of relevant national-level journals for their manuscript. Direct communication frequently occurs between author and editor in chief for a preliminary check of a draft, usually to check the relevancy of the manuscript's topic with the scope of the journal.

Every day, in the academic scene, one would receive a marching of call for papers from academic journal publishers. The requests are usually posted on social media and group communication channel (such as Whatsapp/Telegram Group). At the same time, we also receive messages from people asking for information about a journal's next publishing schedule. They would expect their manuscripts could be sent immediately before publishing schedule so that they wouldn't wait a long time for the peer-review process. The peer-review process, which is based on projected impact within "western" standards is indeed a big and perhaps the most significant barrier in the publishing ecosystem, worldwide (Tennant et al. 2017).

On the other side, there's a dynamic mobile app scene. Online ride-hailing apps (RHA) is the must-have app on your mobile device. People would install more than one RHA on their phone to get the best service they can get. The app which originally built for shared transportation has been quickly extended to meet almost all modern urban needs. From delivering warm Chinese noodle immediately to providing a cleaning staff right in front of your door, from becoming your additional hands to purchase groceries to ensuring your hair looks best in every occasion.

We also need to build the capacity of journals by not choosing them not only based on the journal's rank. The step is vital because our ministry now makes a scoring system (SINTA), based on mainstream metrics. We need to educate the authors on how to choose a suitable journal for their manuscript beyond those metrics.

Considering both scenes, we propose an idea to use the same connection between providers and users for scientific publishing ecosystem. We need to make journal selection faster to bring a fresher air to the academic atmosphere in Indonesia. Moreover, our imagination was an application that connects a potential author with an academic journal publisher that suits his/her scope of research (Fig. 1). An app that processes a database of thousands of scientific journals in Indonesia and presents them as spatial data points, in a way like an RHA does. We proudly introduce our concept of GO-PUB.

Figure 1.  

Expected change in academic publishing.

Overview

Metrics have been used to measure the performance of scientists. This common western-based scientific practice is combined with staff productivity and journal prestige. In the last half-century, this combination has been continuously elevated to measure the performance of academic institutions and eventually directed to determine national ranks. Such a situation has grown into a self-censoring mechanism to academics. To their perception, publishing in English has presumably more prestige, readership, acknowledgment, and credits related to staff promotion requirement. However, publishing in English is not easy for most Indonesian academics, since English is not their first nor second language. Hence, language has become the second barrier in this case.

Researchers are usually blended to this practice, leaving their primary objective to increase knowledge to society. The original idea is to apply the same zoning concept to the scholarly publishing system, where Indonesia currently is the home of 1530 academic journals with different scopes in 9 fields of study (DOAJ 2019). GO-PUB could be one of the forefronts to make a scholarly revolution in Indonesia, as it would be the first mobile app to connect authors with editors.

Objectives

Given the situation of the academic scene, these are the objectives of GO-PUB are:

  • to generate a geographical distribution of Indonesia's journal publishers,
  • to provide a dynamic spatial map of scholarly journal publishers,
  • to easily connect potential authors with suitable publishers.

The central role of this app is to help authors decide on where to send their manuscript. It would be nice if we could add a drafting feature to the app to make it more useful for authors and to make a one-stop publishing system.

Implementation

GO-PUB uses journal publisher dataset, preferable open dataset, such as DOAJ. The app could also use a dataset provided by Ministry of Research Technology and Higher Education (MRTHE) and/or Indonesia Journal Volunteer (RJI), the first national-level association of journal managers in Indonesia. They have a massive database of Indonesian journals that would be the basis of this app.

The major work is to plot each publisher on the correct geo-coordinated location. The rest of the data should be formatted to give more filters for selection. GO-PUB should handle the following filters seamlessly: name of the journal, publishers, address, coordinates, scope, field of study, type of received article, article processing charge (APC), peer review process and how long will the process take, and manuscript language. The final dataset then integrated with a mobile app programming language. Several programming languages commonly used to write mobile apps (Smutný 2012, Holzinger et al. 2012), such as Python, HTML5, Java, and .NET.

The significant insight was to use open-source and cross-platforms tools in developing GO-PUB and host all associated materials in an open repository( e.g., Github or Gitlab) (Fig. 2). This way we can make sure GO-PUB available for the public to allow contributions from users into the app. Finally, GO-PUB must also be distributed under an open license, e.g.: MIT License or CC license.

Figure 2.  

GO-PUB general components and workflow.

Author contributions

DEI: ideas, drafting and finalizing the manuscript

APK: ideas and drafting the manuscript

MTM: ideas and drafting the manuscript

EK: ideas and graphics

Conflicts of interest

We declare no conflicts of interest upon the publication of this manuscript.

References