The report of the consultancy on academic assessment in Uruguay was presented

The report entitled “A study of academic evaluation in Uruguay in reflective perspective” was requested by the National Council for Innovation, Science and Technology (CONICYT); the results were presented on April 29 through a conference and two workshops held at the Faculty of Information and Communication of the University of the Republic.

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Presentation of the report and workshops. April 29, 2024

The consultancy arose as a need within CONICYT from the materialization of the process of reflection and analysis aimed at a new institutional design of the STI area promoted by the Ministry of Education and Culture. Within this framework, it has been essential to diagnose the different evaluation systems for researchers and identify existing incentives and/or disincentives for developing scientific and technological activities. Thus, the tasks requested by CONICYT were: a) to systematize and analyze the researcher’s career evaluation experiences in Uruguay within the framework of current international debates and b) to prepare recommendations to improve and articulate the existing evaluation systems. Based on a public call for proposals, Dr. Fernanda Beigel was selected to head this consultancy, which was carried out in the context of CONICET’s consultancy framework.

For the development of the study, the reflective perspective of the Sociology of Evaluation was adopted, implementing a methodology that articulated qualitative and quantitative strategies, as well as a wide range of documentary material collected from all national institutions. To analyze the experience of the academic careers existing in Uruguay at different scales (institutional and national), interviews and focus groups were conducted with members of evaluation committees, officials, academic-scientific referents, and researchers. These testimonies were analyzed using Atlas.ti (see Part Two of this report). Likewise, the analysis of the relationship between the evaluation systems of researchers and the profiles of production and circulation of knowledge was carried out through an exploratory study of academic trajectories. Finally, based on the complete information on researchers in the National System of Researchers (SNI) existing in the Uruguayan Curriculum Vitae system (CVUy), a bibliometric analysis combined with prosopography was implemented to detect asymmetries and promotion problems in the SNI. With all the empirical material collected, the strengths and weaknesses of the researcher evaluation systems in Uruguay were identified, and a set of recommendations were proposed and included in the same study. The full report, its executive version, as well as the partial reports can be consulted at the following links:



The International Seminar “Open Access and Publishing Asymmetries: Studies on APC and Diamond Publishing Costs” will take place

The scientific event organised by the Global Research Institute of Paris (GRIP) will be held at the Université Paris Cite on 27 and 28 March. It will also be possible to attend in virtual mode via Zoom.

Researchers highly value open access. One of the reasons is that citation rates are higher in open-access publications, which means a greater recognition of research results. But, when researchers decide to publish their results in an open-access journal, they have to evaluate several factors that are not always compatible: its prestige in the field of study, the journal’s impact and its international ranking, the time needed to evaluate and publish the article, and the availability of enough resources to pay the APCs imposed by the journal. Articles become free to readers, and the cost of publishing is transferred to the authors or the author’s institutions. This new marketing model is strongly promoted by journals belonging to the dominant oligopolies, indexed by the dominant databases such as Clarivate Web of Science and Scopus that produce the prestige indicators.

On their part, science funding agencies are under increasing pressure to respond to APCs payment demands with public resources that are always limited. At the same time, agencies, universities and researchers are discussing the relation between publishing practices and hiring and promotion criteria in the scientific career, responsible evaluation on the recognition required to receive research grants, and the new type of communication needed to boost socially relevant research.

This new situation poses a dilemma to researchers: either pay to become a globally accepted researcher or remain a less prestigious and poorly funded local researcher. The dilemma is particularly strong for those based in semi-peripheral (or Global South) countries since this model increases open-access publishing costs, known as article processing charges (APC). Thus, placing a high financial strain on authors whose universities don’t have material resources to sign transformative agreements.

During 2023, the Global Research Institut of Paris hosted the project “A comparative analysis of open science, access and circulation of knowledge in Latin America and Africa”, which consisted of an international survey aimed at nationally rated researchers based in five countries: Brasil, Mexico, Argentina, South Africa and Sénégal. The target populations in these countries share similar structural constraints, although they have essential differences in internationalization and the incidence of research assessment incentives in publishing practices. The survey intended to explore perceptions, publishing experiences in open access, position-takings towards APC costs and the challenges these entail. It was performed during August-December 2023 and this seminar is intended to discuss the results.


CECIC International Workshop “National, regional and global sources for a new perspective on the circulation of knowledge”

The scientific meeting, organised by the CECIC, will take place on 30 and 31 October and 1 November, with the participation of specialists from all over the country and abroad. The activities will take place at the CICUNC (Rectorate) and Classroom 1 of the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences (FCPyS) of the UNCuyo.

The Workshop will consist of three days of presentations, debates and reflections. On the first day, the following themes will be addressed: Global information sources and transformations of the mainstream circuit, together with Comparative trajectories of circulation: encounters between prosopography and bibliometrics. On the second day of the scientific event, the following thematic lines will also take place: Spaces of circulation and evaluative cultures, as well as Sources of information, Humanities and Social Sciences. The third day, meanwhile, will be the setting for presentations and reflections on national scientific journal systems, interoperability, repositories and journal platforms. The scientific event has confirmed the participation of various national and international specialists who will present advances and findings of their work related to the circulation of scientific knowledge and the instrumentalisation of sources from different geographical anchors.

On 30 October, the researchers who will participate in the roundtable linked to global sources of information are Ismael Ràfols (Leiden University), Vincent Lariviére (Université du Montreal), Fernanda Beigel (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO), Emanuel Kulczycki (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań), and Gabriel Vélez Cuartas (University of Antioquia). Then, in the session devoted to the study of comparative trajectories of circulation, Luciano Digiampietri (Universidade de São Paulo), Osvaldo Gallardo (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO), Victor Montoya (UNTreF), Antonela Isoglio (UNC) and Soledad Gomez (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO) will present their contributions. On the second day proposed for 31 October, the round table corresponding to the Spaces of circulation and evaluative cultures will be made up of studies by Maximiliano Salatino (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO), Victor Algañaraz (CONICET, CECIC-UNSJ), Flavia Prado (CONICET, CECIC-UNSJ), Gonzalo Castillo (CONICET, CECIC-UNSJ), Ana María Almeida (Universidade Estadual de Campinas), Pía Rossomando (CONICET, CECIC-UNSJ), Soledad Gomez (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO), Fabio Erreguerena (CECIC-UNCUYO) and Fabricio Neves (Universidade de Brasilia). Also participating in the session focused on Sources of information in the humanities and social sciences will be Denis Baranger (UNMisiones), Juan Piovani (UNLP), Amurabi Oliveira (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina), Mayra Juruá Gomes De Oliveira (CIRST-UQAM, Universidade Estadual de Campinas), together with Lucía Céspedes (CONICET, UNC).

On 1 November, as part of the special programme of the “UNESCO-Interoperable Platform for Scientific Journals” project, the round table dedicated to National Systems of Scientific Journals will be held with the participation of Carolina Monti (CONICET, UNLP), Carolina de Volder (Centro Argentino de Información Científica y Tecnológica CONICET), Fernanda Beigel (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO), Emilio Di Domenico (UNC), Ramiro Zo (UNCUYO) and Maximiliano Salatino (CONICET, CECIC-UNCUYO). In the second activity of the day, focused on Interoperability studies, repositories and journal platforms, Gonzalo Villareal (UNLP), Enzo Rucci (UNLP and Comisión de Investigaciones Científicas de la provincia de Buenos Aires), Carlos Authier (Centro Argentino de Información Científica y Tecnológica CONICET), Carina Gordillo (Centro Argentino de Información Científica y Tecnológica CONICET), Paola Azrilevich (MINCyT) and Alberto Apollaro (MINCyT) will present their papers. The programme is available here.

UNESCO’s Open Science Production Indicators project is launched

The project “Indicators of production in open science: building bridges towards the interoperability of information systems in Argentina” approved and funded by UNESCO held its inaugural meeting on June 15, 2023. The development of its scientific activities will be conducted by the Center for Knowledge Circulation Studies (CECIC) in liaison with the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of the National University of Cuyo (Mendoza, Argentina).

The first meeting was held on 06/15/23, with the participation of experts in scientific journals from all over the country.

The proposal seeks to generate a working space and explore the existing conditions, obstacles and technical requirements to build a platform of Argentine scientific journals to make this production accessible to different users, students, researchers, librarians and information management personnel from different institutions. Building the architecture of such a platform could generate bridges of interoperability with open-access repositories of institutions, offer a valuable tool for evaluation processes and enhance the editorial professionalization of journals.

Hence, the project is clearly in line with the principles of UNESCO’s Open Science Recommendation, approved in November 2021. This proposes, among other dimensions, to advance in the institutionalization of enabling environments for open science, promoting responsible practices in the evaluation of research and researchers, which tend to encourage quality science, recognizing the diversity of research results, activities and missions. Likewise, these recommendations recognize that to foster a culture of open science, one of the main areas of action lies in redirecting incentives in academic evaluation systems. Finally, among its programmatic actions, it recommends that Member States, by their specific circumstances, governance structures and constitutional provisions, and by international and national legal frameworks, actively seek to reward open science practices in terms of research data, publications, as well as citizen and participatory science.

The survey of Argentinean journals: a contribution of the CECIC team to the UNESCO project

Within the framework of a study funded by CIECTI on accessibility and circulation of Argentine scientific journals, the dataset of the “Relevamiento de Revistas Científicas Argentinas” has recently been made available in open access in the digital CONICET Institutional Repository, to consolidate information on currently active Argentine scientific journals created between 1858 and 2020.

The digital CONICET Institutional Repository is an open-access virtual platform that makes available to society, the scientific-technological production made by researchers, fellows and other staff of the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET). This dataset includes descriptive information about these journals at the time of the survey (October 2021) that allows to analyze them according to their editorial professionalization, institutional anchorage and indexing and also includes a set of characteristics such as title, date of creation, discipline, website, editorial management, publishing institution and information on APC collection, subscriptions and indexing in databases, among others.

The journal titles were extracted from lists from different indexing databases or portals (Latindex Catalog 2.0, SciELO, RedALyC, Scopus and Web of Science, ISSN Argentina, Oliva-CECIC-Cuyo, national universities and scientific societies). Also, the data were collected and subjected to a process of cleaning and detection of duplicates and inactive journals between May and October 2021, resulting in a list with information on 786 active journals in 2020.

The Survey of Argentine Scientific Journals results were published in Chapter 1 of the book “Policies for the Promotion of Knowledge and intellectual property rights”, recently presented at the 47th Book Fair. This chapter offers a current overview of Argentine scientific journals in all areas. The first part completely describes the universe of recent publications surveyed. It then analyzes the structure of the Argentine scientific publishing space and its forms of circulation, offering a classification of the journals. Finally, it relates the world of scientific publishing with academic evaluation systems to present some conclusions and proposals for the future.

The survey was carried out within the framework of the Study of Argentine scientific journals by Fernanda Beigel (CONICET and UNCUYO), Carolina Monti (CONICET/UNLP) and Maximiliano Salatino (CONICET/UNCUYO), financed by the Interdisciplinary Center for Studies in Science, Technology and Innovation (CIECTI).

The purpose of making this survey available is to encourage and promote quality Argentine journals.

The dataset can be accessed here.

The Latin American Forum for Research Assessment

The Latin American Forum for Research Assessment (FOLEC) is an initiative of the international Latin American Council of Social Sciences (CLACSO). CLACSO created FOLEC to support knowledge sharing on research assessment reform between CLACSO research member institutions and regional policymakers. This initiative was necessary because CLACSO research member institutions are located in 52 countries, primarily in Latin America and the Caribbean, where research assessment measures are regionally disparate or in need of reform. The ultimate goal of FOLEC is to facilitate the creation of a collective and improved Latin American and Caribbean standard of practice for academic research assessment. To this end, FOLEC works with national research councils in the region and specialists from CLACSO´s network. Together they convene conferences, workshops, and working groups on the topic of research assessment to facilitate collaboration and knowledge sharing.

In November of 2019, FOLEC and the Mexican National Council for Sciences and Technology (CONACYT) organized the First Latin American Forum on Research Assessment in Mexico City.1 Stemming from this meeting, CLACSO’s Executive Secretariat presented a roadmap to create a collective Latin American and Caribbean research assessment reform proposal by November 2021. Since then, FOLEC has convened national and international meetings to facilitate knowledge transfer for scientific assessment reform and has generated guidance documentation for research assessment reform in the region.