Plug-ins enhance publications

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The Enhanced Journals…Made Easy project (EJME), which is funded by SURF, has designed a practical work process for publishers of open-access journals to enhance academic journals with their associated data files. The project involved the development of two plug-ins for Open Journal Systems (OJS), a system for managing and publishing journals. 

With these plug-ins, authors and editors who use OJS can add data files to articles, including the associated metadata. The data files are then available – without any extra action being necessary – for everyone involved in the editorial process, including peer reviewers. When the article is published, there are references to the datasets, both on the webpage and in a machine-readable file. It is also important that the editorial team can make it possible for the data to be automatically submitted to a reliable data repository when the article is published.

According to Jeroen Sondervan of Amsterdam University Press, ‘This integration of research data and results on the one hand and publications on the other creates a completely new way of assessing, verifying, and publishing. The combination of OJS and the EJME plug-ins brings this a step closer.’

The EJME plug-ins link up with the work process followed by the editors of Open Journals: from the researcher’s intention to publish to the Open Access publication of the article. The plug-ins have been tested in practice by Journal of Archaeology in the Low Countries, published by Amsterdam University Press and International Journal of the Commons, published by UBU/Igitur Publishing.

Staff of the international OJS are enthusiastic about the EJME plug-ins and have included them in their plug-in library. ‘The plug-ins are extremely useful and robust, and the documentation is clear and well written,’ commented Kevin Stranack of Public Knowledge Project (PKP), the organisation that manages and develops the OJS.