[OSGeo-Discuss] [Geo4All] Draft of Open Letter on the importance to protecting independent peer review frameworks for Scholarly publications of Scientific Associations
c.willmes at uni-koeln.de
Tue Jul 24 23:31:51 PDT 2018
I agree with you on the matter, that publishing a book in context of
United Nations initiative by esri is bad. I would also support to
offiicialy articulate this somehow.
But the case you address was solved. As I understand, esri is no longer
considered as the publisher for the book?
I also think, that there might be a big conflict of interest, if esri
publishes a UN SDG book. But intil that is proven by some wrong doing
from esri during the editing and publication process, we are talking not
about facts. And as far as I know they didn't published an UN related
book yet? Maybe ICA and Prof. Kraak understood this problem, after you
raised your concerns about this issue last year. So, thank you very much
for your caring about this issue a year ago, and as it seems you already
won the battle!
What I see now, is at most a policy issue within ICA, that they may need
to open up the process for deciding for a publisher of a book project,
but I am not even sure about that, because they seem to have already a
policy for that case in place?
Am 24.07.2018 um 22:51 schrieb Suchith Anand:
> Dear Christian,
> Thank you for you mail and inputs. This letter is draft and I welcome
> inputs from you and everyone to refine it.I fully agree with you that
> we just need more transparency in science and also in the whole
> process of editing/reviewing and publishing a book.
> I am happy to make the edits/changes needed that you suggested and I
> will request your help on this. I have provided all information that I
> have on this book project that I am aware of. I just do not know the
> details (what was the process of selecting the publisher, criteria
> etc).If you are able to get details on this and share with the
> community, it will be very helpful. I did my best to get more
> information on the publisher decision process etc . Forsome
> strangereason, there was no openness in the whole process which is the
> main concern. So if there is no openness and transparency even in this
> then how do you think we can expect transparency in editing/reviewing
> process. I respectfully disagree with you that any GIS vendor if they
> are also running theirpublication press, then they have no conflict of
> It is the duty of scientific association to ensure there is
> transparency in science. Even ICA’s publication policy for conference
> proceedingsdoes not mention any GIS vendor press . Why? Please see
> All scholarly publications (edited books, journals, conference
> proceedings) should follow similar guidelines.So I am very confused
> why and how a GIS vendor press was planned for this community book
> I highlighted the global problem of increase in low quality
> submissionsand it is not an ICA problem or any Vendor problem or any
> single organisation problem.Hence it is important that we are all very
> vigilant and take steps to protect the integrity of independent peer
> review frameworksfor Scholarly publications of Scientific
> Associations. If anyScientific Associations themselves are not open
> and transparent in their decision making, then how can theyensure
> independent peer review frameworksfor Scholarly publications!
> I want to make it clear that I am not an author or coauthor on any
> articles submitted to this book project. So I do not have any personal
> conflict of interest in this. GeoForAll colleagues contributed for
> this book project in good faith. I did work to get GeoForAll
> colleagues to support and contribute for this book project. So I have
> a moral responsibility to make sure they are provided as much
> information and updates on this.I have no issue if the GIS vendor
> publication press for this community book was selected by an open,
> transparent process.
> I want us to look at the future not focus on mistakes made in past .
> Some mistakes have been made and I understand that this is corrected.
> We are all human , so we all make mistakes So let us not focus on
> past mistakes but look at ideas on how we can strengthen the
> independent peer review frameworks for Scholarly publications of
> Scientific Associations in the future.
> I have worked with many properitaryGIS vendors and I have
> great respect for all of them and always welcomed them.I have raised
> my concern with someopen source vendors also if I find any thing that
> undermines openness.I am the view that both open and properitary
> systems have an important place and need to work together . We are
> all part of a big ecosystem all working for Geo. I believe in open
> discussions to help find better understanding. For me, Openness
> means being open to different perspectives ,ideas, viewpoints,
> cultures and learning and improving to be a better human every day...
> Best wishes,
> *From:* GeoForAll <geoforall-bounces at lists.osgeo.org> on behalf of
> Christian Willmes <c.willmes at uni-koeln.de>
> *Sent:* 24 July 2018 17:43
> *To:* geoforall at lists.osgeo.org; OSGeo Discussions
> *Subject:* Re: [Geo4All] Draft of Open Letter on the importance to
> protecting independent peer review frameworks for Scholarly
> publications of Scientific Associations
> Dear Suchith,
> I understand your point, and I also support your views on this, but
> this is from my perspective a too personal/particular issue, as to
> have it as an "OSGeo open letter". Also, because this is more of an
> ICA and not so much an OSGeo issue, I think.
> First, I would keep it more general. You address a particular issue
> (UN SDG book published by esri), and also some personal background
> (this should not matter to the addressed subject). I would recommend
> you keep it from being personal and denouncing proprietary GIS
> vendors. If a company plays by the rules of science, there is nothing
> wrong about that company publishing a scientific book. I.e. almost all
> book publishers are commercial companies with interests somehow and
> You need to “attack” scientific “wrong doing” by that particular
> company in conducting the editing and publication of that book.
> Publishing books if done correctly is not wrong, even by a vendor with
> vested interests. But if you witness, for example, that submissions
> using open source GIS solutions are disadvantaged against the
> submissions using products of the proprietary GIS vendor publishing
> the book, that would be the point to raise and attack.
> Second, better write about how it should be done to avoid this
> negative “Fake Science” things from happening. Here the idea of Open
> Science and Reproducible Science is key, i.e. the most openness and
> transparency possible. We just need more transparency in science and
> also in the whole process of editing/reviewing and publishing a book.
> And this is where OSGeo can contribute. Basically, real reproducible
> and open science is not possible without open source software. If you
> can’t see how something is implemented, you can not really reproduce
> the results.
> Third, if you accuse someone of “Fake Science” please make sure to
> offer evidence about this particular misconduct. If you fail to do so,
> you are creating “fake news” yourself. Sorry, no offense at you
> personally, but I think its not a good idea to publish this letter in
> OSGeo's or GeoForAll's name. At least not with these accusations or
> even notion of "Fake Science" in it.
> To be clear, I share your view that it is bad, if esri would publish a
> book written by scientists in the context of a United Nations
> initiative to maybe only advertise its own product, but until any
> misconduct is proven, you can't accuse esri or ICA of "Fake Science".
> Best regards,
> Am 24.07.2018 um 11:53 schrieb Suchith Anand:
>> Dear colleagues,
>> I have prepared a draft letter with my ideas/suggestions .I am just a
>> volunteer and I feel sad thatthat I have to raise this issue through
>> an open letter. But if I remain silent on this , I will be
>> indirectly supporting the degrading of independent peer review
>> frameworks for Scholarly publications of Scientific Associations.
>> It is the fundamental duty of all Officers of Scientific
>> Associations/Organisationsto always take steps to guard and protect
>> independent peer review frameworksfor Scholarly publications of
>> Scientific Associations. I am hopeful and confident that that they
>> all will do this for the future.
>> I am not a native English speaker, so please help refine thisletter
>> correctly. I want us to look at the future not focus on mistakes made
>> in past . Some mistakes have been made and I understand that this is
>> corrected. We are all human , so we all make mistakes. So let us not
>> focus on past mistakes but look at ideas on how we can strengthen the
>> independent peer review frameworksfor Scholarly publications of
>> Scientific Associations in the future.
>> The International Cartographic Association (ICA) is my organisation
>> for whichI have volunteered for the last 15 years and continuing . I
>> have great respect for everyone in this great global community . The
>> SDG book is a community effort (not any individual’s book project) .
>> I have requested from the start (as soon as I came to know) for
>> openness and transparency in decision making for selecting the
>> publisher. esp. as this book is on UN SDG . I understand that ICA has
>> now corrected the mistake . Everyone makes mistakes and it takes
>> courage to acknowledge and correct the mistakes .Compassion and
>> forgiveness are important values .I am very grateful that ICA has
>> listened to my concerns and rectified this . So I don’t have any
>> issues with ICA or any colleagues in ICA. We might have difference in
>> opinions on some issues and having free and open discussions is in my
>> humble opinion the best way to learn each others perspectives and
>> find best solutions to move forward.
>> Please send any updates/modifications needed to the draft by 30th
>> July 2018. I am on family holidays ( with no internet ) in first week
>> of August, so I will aim to send this before I go on holidays.
>> *Draft of Open Letter on the importance to protecting independent
>> peer review frameworks**for Scholarly publications of Scientific
>> Scholarly publications (edited books, journals etc) from scientific
>> associations/organisations hascredibility and reputation because of
>> strong independent peer review frameworks . We are very fortunate in
>> the Geospatial domain to have many reputed Scientific Associations
>> and organisations (ICA, IGU, ISPRS, IEEE-GRSS, IAG etc) who have over
>> many decades provided strong leadership in advancement of geo science.
>> In times of fake news, science is usually one of those areas that can
>> give us orientation and we can rely on.Independent peer review
>> frameworksfor Scholarly publications is among the foundations of good
>> science. However, this isobviously at risk now. If a professional
>> association takesagrees to publish scholarly publications (edited
>> books etc)through a GIS vendor’s press then there is potential issues
>> with independent peer review and ensuring scientific quality. It is
>> only natural that any GIS vendor publication press to have vested
>> interests in promoting their products andagenda. It also makes it
>> easy for the vendor to get endorsement for theirproducts from
>> scientific and professional organisations using this route.
>> Independent peer review is the fundamental aspect of science and we
>> need to ensure all steps to protect this.
>> We are also now seeing a very disturbing trend withsome vendors even
>> starting to trademark “ science” for marketing/sales of theirproducts
>> and “science” is being misused for vendor marketing/sales! . I have
>> raised this issue through an open letter  .Science is not a
>> commodity to be marketed or sold by any vendor owners! I am very sad
>> and disappointed to see this degrading of science happening.
>> Scientific organisations should not endorse any specific vendor
>> products etc as “Science” and take strong moral stand
>> againstmarketing of products as “Science’ by any vendor owners!
>> I am a volunteer for the ICA for the last 15 years and always done my
>> best in my small way to support ICA . Around one year back, i/n the
>> light of the //International Map Year (IMY)/ <http://mapyear.org/>/,
>> the /The International Cartographic Association (ICA) started an
>> excellent initiative /forhighlighting the value of cartography by
>> “mapping” the //UN sustainable development goals/
>> <https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/>/./Building upon this, The
>> ICA community started work on a book on UN SDG Mappingbuilding upon
>> the posters of the various commissions on this . This is a great
>> community initiative developed with inputs from all colleagues in
>> commissions of the ICA. The Open Source Geospatial Commission
>> colleagues also contributed our inputs for this. When the book
>> project was announced, I did my best to contact colleagues to
>> contribute to this in good faith. I didn’t have the faintest idea
>> that it was being planned to be published through a properitary GIS
>> vendor publication press! As soon as I came to know about this, I did
>> contact Menno -Jan with my concerns and requested him that as this is
>> a community book project to please allow open discussions and keep
>> the community updated  . I was very surprised that there was no
>> open and transparent discussions on selecting the book publisher was
>> From an email from Anthony Robinson on 16th July 2018, I understand
>> now that ICA is not proceeding with the vendor GIS publication press
>> (Esri press)for the SDG book and I welcome this. But it isimportantwe
>> need to be learn lessons from this mistake and not repeat this in
>> future. We are all humans and make mistakes.
>> I fully respect the right of individuals publishing their personal
>> work  in any publication house that they wish. But as officers of
>> Scientific Organisations, esp. in times of some vendor owners
>> doing marketing/sales on “Science” , I request all colleagues to be
>> careful not to do anything that will undermine independent peer
>> review process.
>> I am suggesting some initial ideas that we all can take as a
>> community to help reduce this problem in the future
>> * All Scientific Associations and organisations should ensure that
>> there is full open and transparent discussions allowed before
>> choosing any publishers of scholarly publications (Edited Books
>> * It is important that GIS scientific associations/organisations
>> take strong moral stand against taking sponsorship/royalty etc
>> for scholarly publications from all GIS vendors . Independent
>> peer review system is the fundamental aspect of science. So I am
>> humbly requesting all Scientific organisations tonot use any GIS
>> vendor controlled press for publishing scholarly outputs (edited
>> books etc).GIS scientific organisations should nottakeany
>> sponsorship or royalty for scholarly publications (books,
>> journals etc) from any GIS vendors . If a scientific association
>> takesagrees to publish scholarly publications (edited books
>> etc)through the vendor’s press then there is potential issues
>> with independent peer review and ensuring scientific quality. It
>> is only natural that any GIS vendor publication press to have
>> vested interests in promoting their products and agenda. It also
>> makes it easy for the vendor to get endorsement for their
>> products from scientific and professional organisations using
>> this route. Independent peer review is the fundamental aspect of
>> science and we need to ensure all steps to protect this.
>> * Officers of Scientific Organisations and Editors of all GIS
>> journals declare any conflict of interest with any vendors
>> (funding/sponsorship/royalties etc received from any GIS vendors
>> currently or in the past) to ensure transparency and good
>> practices.They should not support any vendors interest directly
>> or indirectly. Scientific organisations should not endorse any
>> specific vendor products etc as “Science” and take strong moral
>> stand against marketing of products as “Science’ by any vendor
>> I am concerned with the wider degradation of science and education
>> happening in different sectors. This is a moral issue and needs all
>> organisations globally in science and education working together.
>> It is the fundamental duty of all Officers of Scientific
>> Organisationsto guard and protect independent peer review
>> frameworksfor Scholarly publications of Scientific Associations. I am
>> hopeful and confident that that they will do this for the future.
>> Best wishes,
>>  https://
>>  https://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/geoforall/2017-June/003790.html
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> Dr. Christian Willmes
> AG GIS & Fernerkundung | GIS & RS Group
> Geographisches Institut | Institute of Geography
> Universität zu Köln | University of Cologne
> Tel.: +49 (0)221 470 6234
> This message and any attachment are intended solely for the addressee
> and may contain confidential information. If you have received this
> message in error, please contact the sender and delete the email and
> Any views or opinions expressed by the author of this email do not
> necessarily reflect the views of the University of Nottingham. Email
> communications with the University of Nottingham may be monitored
> where permitted by law.
AG GIS & Fernerkundung | GIS & RS Group
Geographisches Institut | Institute of Geography
Universität zu Köln | University of Cologne
Tel.: +49 (0)221 470 6234
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