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Defining Open Science & Scholarship

The definition of Open Science and Scholarship is broad and continually evolving.

Drawing on the Latin word scientia, meaning "knowledge", the concept of Open Science embraces what we know, and how, in the natural and social sciences, as well as the arts and humanities. Also called Open Research, Open Knowledge, or Open Scholarship, it is focused on inclusive approaches to producing, curating, disseminating and evaluating research and educational outputs; how individuals are rewarded for this; and how universities can make valuable offerings to Society as a result.

As such, Open Science and Scholarship can be considered to cover everything from Open Access Publishing, to Open Data and Software, Transparency, Reproducibility and Open Methodology, as well as Open Educational Resources; and it also extends to include Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR) data (1), Next Generation Metrics, Research Integrity; and how academics can invite greater involvement with research processes and products through Citizen Science, Engaged Research, Public Involvement, Co-production and Communication. 
The breadth of the principles behind Open Science and Scholarship means that at least some of the elements apply to all subjects and disciplines.

At UCL’s Office for Open Science and Scholarship, our work is underpinned by the LERU 8 Pillars of Open Science. These cover all of the above aspects in some way while including two additional elements which allows us to commit to ensuring that we provide training and skills for everyone to embrace Open Science, and also to find ways to reward people for embracing Open Science practice:

  • FAIR Data.
  • Research Integrity.
  • Next Generation Metrics.
  • Future of Scholarly Communication.
  • Citizen Science.
  • Education and Skills.
  • Rewards and Initiatives.
  • European Open Science Cloud (EOSC).

Open Science and Scholarship provides a set of principles for practice which are transforming the research and educational landscape across the world to benefit Society as a whole. UCL is committed to supporting all aspects of Open Science and Scholarship and to being a global leader in effecting a transition to an Open Science landscape.