The Center for Philanthropic Studies I am leading at VU Amsterdam is converting to Open Science.
Open Science offers four advantages to the scientific community, nonprofit organizations, and the public at large:
- Access: we make our work more easily accessible for everyone. Our research serves public goods, which are served best by open access.
- Efficiency: we make it easier for others to build on our work, which saves time.
- Quality: we enable others to check our work, find flaws and improve it.
- Innovation: ultimately, open science facilitates the production of knowledge.
What does the change mean in practice?
First, the source of funding for contract research we conduct will always be disclosed.
Second, data collection – interviews, surveys, experiments – will follow a prespecified protocol. This includes the number of observations forseen, the questions to be asked, measures to be included, hypotheses to be tested, and analyses to be conducted. New studies will be preferably be preregistered.
Third, data collected and the code used to conduct the analyses will be made public, through the Open Science Framework for instance. Obviously, personal or sensitive data will not be made public.
Fourth, results of research will preferably be published in open access mode. This does not mean that we will publish only in Open Access journals. Research reports and papers for academic will be made available online in working paper archives, as a ‘preprint’ version, or in other ways.
December 16, 2015 update:
A fifth reason, following directly from #1 and #2, is that open science reduces the costs of science for society.
See this previous post for links to our data and questionnaires.