EurekAlert: Announcing the launch of Global Africa, a new African academic journal

EurekAlert: Announcing the launch of Global Africa, a new African academic journal. “With Global Africa, the UGB’s LASPAD (Laboratoire d’analyse des sociétés et pouvoirs / Afrique – Diasporas) aims to report on political, social, economic, environmental, and technological issues, both in Africa and around the world…. Alongside the journal, training courses will be offered to improve the African research production and dissemination ecosystem. These will include online classes on preparing and publishing articles for both researchers and publishing professionals, as well as pop-up seminars for young researchers, helping to grow the community of authors interested in the journal’s key topics.”

Platforms vs. PhDs: How tech giants court and crush the people who study them (Protocol)

Protocol: Platforms vs. PhDs: How tech giants court and crush the people who study them. “Over the last few years, amid mounting scrutiny of Silicon Valley, tech platforms have made overtures to the research community, opening up previously inaccessible data sets that academics can use to study how tech platforms impact society…. But even as this work progresses, tech companies are simultaneously cracking down on academics whose methods break their rules.”

Ars Technica: Critical 0-day that targeted security researchers gets a patch from Microsoft

Ars Technica: Critical 0-day that targeted security researchers gets a patch from Microsoft. “Microsoft has patched a critical zero-day vulnerability that North Korean hackers were using to target security researchers with malware. The in-the-wild attacks came to light in January in posts from Google and Microsoft. Hackers backed by the North Korean government, both posts said, spent weeks developing working relationships with security researchers. To win the researchers’ trust, the hackers created a research blog and Twitter personas who contacted researchers to ask if they wanted to collaborate on a project.”

Google Blog: New campaign targeting security researchers

Google Blog: New campaign targeting security researchers. “Over the past several months, the Threat Analysis Group has identified an ongoing campaign targeting security researchers working on vulnerability research and development at different companies and organizations. The actors behind this campaign, which we attribute to a government-backed entity based in North Korea, have employed a number of means to target researchers which we will outline below.”

New York Times: They Wanted Research Funding, So They Entered the Lottery

New York Times: They Wanted Research Funding, So They Entered the Lottery. “Since 2013, the New Zealand council has dedicated around 2 percent of its annual funding expenditure to what it calls explorer grants, asking applicants to submit proposals they think are ‘transformative, innovative, exploratory or unconventional, and have potential for major impact.’ Such lotteries have been used in other countries, and some have the goal of increasing the diversity of grant recipients, as well as assisting researchers in earlier stages of their career who might struggle to find funding.”

ProPublica: Dollars for Profs

ProPublica: Dollars for Profs. “Professors’ outside income can influence their research topics and findings, policy views and legislative testimony. But these conflicts of interest have largely stayed hidden — until now. This unique database allows you to search records from multiple state universities and the National Institutes of Health for outside income and conflicts of interest of professors, researchers and staff.”

The Conversation: Science needs myths to thrive

The Conversation: Science needs myths to thrive. “What helped me develop as a researcher was reading stories about those who came before me. For scientific research to be successful in the long term, I think researchers need a strong set of values, including an unwavering commitment to the truth, and a drive to test any idea to destruction. Though they may seem opposed to the ideals of the rigorous scientific method, the best way of instilling these values is, as ever, through the stories and myths that we tell ourselves.”

Phys .org: Researchers suggest better communication needed to convince public of findings

Phys .org: Researchers suggest better communication needed to convince public of findings. “A team of researchers from several institutions in the U.S. has published a Perspective piece in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences discussing the growing problem of acceptance of findings by scientists by the general public. They suggest several possible approaches that researchers could use to promote more effective signals of trustworthiness to the public.”

Chronicle of Higher Education: As Scholars Are Driven to Less Prestigious Journals, New Measures of Quality Emerge

Chronicle of Higher Education: As Scholars Are Driven to Less Prestigious Journals, New Measures of Quality Emerge. “As more scholars publish in less-recognized open-access journals, the search is on for other ways to measure the impact of their research. One potential measure of reach is in online sharing: posts on Twitter, blog links, and other engagement metrics of various kinds. HuMetricsHSS, a humanities and social-sciences project that tracks indicators in those fields, includes as another such metric ‘openness,’ including a researcher’s ‘transparency, candor, and accountability, in addition to the practice of making one’s research open access at all stages.’”

Chronicle of Higher Education: If History Is Any Guide, End of Federal Shutdown Won’t Bring Quick Relief for College Researchers

Chronicle of Higher Education: If History Is Any Guide, End of Federal Shutdown Won’t Bring Quick Relief for College Researchers. “Neal F. Lane didn’t mince words when he spoke at the 1996 American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting, in Baltimore. On the heels of a 21-day government shutdown, then the longest in U.S. history, the National Science Foundation’s director was reeling. Funds for many continuing grants had run out. He expected funding gaps for renewals and delays in funding new awards. New programs could be pushed back significantly — perhaps six months to a year — or canceled. The shutdown, he said, had ‘demoralized our work force and destroyed any efficient timetable for our already pressured work.’”

Intellectual humility: the importance of knowing you might be wrong (Vox)

Vox: Intellectual humility: the importance of knowing you might be wrong. “Julia Rohrer wants to create a radical new culture for social scientists. A personality psychologist at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Rohrer is trying to get her peers to publicly, willingly admit it when they are wrong. To do this, she, along with some colleagues, started up something called the Loss of Confidence Project. It’s designed to be an academic safe space for researchers to declare for all to see that they no longer believe in the accuracy of one of their previous findings. “

TechCrunch: Morressier makes it easy to share early research

TechCrunch: Morressier makes it easy to share early research . “Morressier is a service for early-stage research. This means it allows researchers to ‘raise the profile of their conference posters, presentations and abstracts and showcase their work from the very beginning.’ Because most early-stage research appears at conferences few of us ever see, by making projects more visible at those conferences we all get better research.”