Monday, October 10, 2016

Another End of Term Youtube Extravaganza

1.      People are Insane: in this clip, yes they are:

2.      Drone Footage, Hornet Red Devil Invitational: this is the team my son coaches, but watching a cross-country meet unfold via drone is pretty cool:

3.      Amazing Sports Clips:

4.      Chris Froome Crash and Run- this was from this year’s Tour de France and was one the weirdest moments in Tour history:

5.      Post Ranch Inn: Big Sur, say no more. Just a superb place to stay, but pricey!

6.      Men’s World Record 400m Olympics 2016: Wade Van Niekirk blows away the world’s best in an unprecedented race:

7.      Wynonna Earp: my current favorite TV show:

8.      Magma, live: a classic song with new guitarist Jim Grandcamp:

9.      The Hillary Step: One of the most famous climbing challenges on planet earth:

10.   Palmer Gallup: Cynthia English’s Homecoming presentation:

Monday, October 3, 2016

A New Journal on Peer Review and Research Integrity

(Note: I have cross-posted this with my blog on Dynamic Chiropractic, given the importance of the topic).

One of the hallmarks of scientific journal publication is the peer review system. An editor cannot be knowledgeable about every possible area of research the journal he or she edits receives for consideration. So the paper is sent for review by people with expertise in the area the paper discusses, and the editor then uses those comments to suggest changes, to reject the paper or to accept it. As nost of us know, the usual response is a request to revise.
But peer review is also a human enterprise and as a result it is subject to weakness, to abuse, to gamesmanship and to other peculiarities. There have been reports of gaming peer review by people who actually review their own work, or who are friends to others who have submitted. Peer review may also prevent new ideas from receiving consideration since those ideas may stand outside an established framework in a discipline.

In the end, this is actually a question of research integrity. That’s why the new open source journal Research Integrity and Peer Review is so refreshing. It is one of the Biomed Central family of journals, and it can be found at Its aim and scope states “Research Integrity and Peer Review is an international, open access, peer reviewed journal that encompasses all aspects of integrity in research publication, including peer review, study reporting, and research and publication ethics. Particular consideration is given to submissions that address current controversies and limitations in the field and offer potential solutions.
It’s time that we look carefully at the processes used in the dissemination of scientific information. This is a highly volatile world that is suffering challenges it has never before had to cope with, from predatory journals to exponential growth of information, to new publishing models and the need for release of data from studies and the need for trial registries. Scientific information is evidence, used to make clinical decisions. Let’s make sure that that information is a rigorous as it can be. This journal will help do just that.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Publication Models Changing as Time Goes On

In my career I have been both an editor for chiropractic science journals and author who has published in them. And since we are now in the world of evidence-based practice, access to journal articles in rather important. But one of the challenges our graduates will face once they leave here is the loss of access to journal articles our site licenses provide them. This needs to be unraveled a bit.
First, the cost to institutions to provide those journals is staggering. Without going into details, I can attest that Palmer has to pay significant funds in order to provide our students access to a host of journals such as you can find on our journals holding list. Of course, once a student graduates he or she can access open access publications at no cost, but that can be limiting, since the top chiropractic journals are not open access (at least not for the first year after an article is published).
New models need to be developed. The traditional journal model is subscription driven. That is, users access information only after paying a fee to do so. Given the amount of information available and the number of journals in existence, it is not financially feasible for newly graduated chiropractors to subscribe to every journal that may be of help to them. One model that has been develop is that of open access, where the author of the article pays a fee to have his or her paper published. The quality controls are present in the best open access publications. Of course, for those of us in chiropractic, coming up with $1500 for publication may not be possible. However, the idea is that in many cases, tax dollars have paid for the research and the public (who provided the tax dollars) should not have to pay again to access information they already paid for.

But the challenge here has led to the existence of predatory journals. These are journals that takes you money, publish your paper and provide no quality control whatsoever. Buyer beware!
And there is the question of timeliness. How many times have we watched and waited to see if our paper was accepted by a journal? I once spent 19 months waiting for a decision on one of my papers. That is unconscionable. eLIFE is an open access journal that promises a turnaround time for decision of just a few days.

I can foresee a time where we change the model altogether. Set up a website, invite publications, allow for transparent review, allow readers to see all communications prior to publication, allow publication and then allow commentary. Remove the journal publisher.
It will be interesting to see how this changes over time.