Open Access

Side-effects reporting for drug trials + more

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on September 16, 2014 - 12:00

Over the years, Open Medicine authors have taken a strong interest in research ethics and particularly the dangers of overly-close or conflicted relationships with pharmaceutical and medical device companies. As you may have intuited from the "closed for submissions" notice on our home page, for a variety of reasons Open Medicine is going to be closing up shop over the next couple of months.

Open Access is for patients too.

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on April 30, 2014 - 21:17

A flurry of study on the topic of open access--always, of course, of special interest around here--as I prepare a talk for a festival of arts and science in Toronto (more on that, to come), on the experience our journal has had with open access from shortly after the concept itself was developed and named. I am coming across all sorts of fascinating things in the process.

The costs of open access publishing

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on April 29, 2014 - 16:13

A recent, information-rich report from the Wellcome Trust:


Low tech biotech

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on April 25, 2014 - 22:52

Citizen science and the DIY (do-it-yourself) movement combine in the quest to create simple, low-cost, assembled-from-basic-materials equipment capable of carrying out sophisticated diagnostic tests or other applications. Open access data can be an important component of making such equipment cost effective. 

Luxury journals... time for a boycott?

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on January 1, 2014 - 18:39

This year´s Medicine Nobel Prize-winner, cell biologist Randy Schekman, published a commentary in the Guardian a few weeks ago arguing that the incentives that big journals—specifically, Science, Cell and Nature—offer distort the progress of science. (The author is the editor of an open access journal, eLife, which is funded by the Wellcome Trust, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Max Planck Society).

Pressing the Open Access Button

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on November 21, 2013 - 15:43

The world of open information is so new and humming with ideas that it’s hard to divine what’s likely to stick. This is a good place to check out some of the newest initiatives.

Here’s one:

About Science and open access

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on October 23, 2013 - 22:26

In a clever sting operation, Science magazine revealed recently that many of the open access science journals that have proliferated in the last few years are not what they ought to be.

As you can read in much more detail here, the magazine worked with researchers to create a sham article, convincing in many ways but fundamentally flawed both ethically and in experimental design. Any competent peer reviewer should have caught the problems and rejected the article.

Opening medicine

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on September 3, 2013 - 15:08

If you’re on our Facebook group (and if you’re not, you should get on right away), or following this blog, or even if you ever read the daily newspaper, you’ll have heard about Tarek Loubani. Dr. Loubani is a London, Ontario emergency physician and humanitarian. He’s also Open Medicine’s technical advisor (he get our articles up on the web, and manages pretty much all other technical aspects of our bold venture into open access medical publishing).

Open access and academic freedom

Submitted by Carlyn Zwarenstein on July 12, 2013 - 22:46

This week The Guardian has an insightful piece on the risks and rewards of open access publishing for academic freedom. It's a thoughtful take on it all and worth reading in its (not very long) entirety. Careful readers will notice a reference to an article that members of Open Medicine's editorial team published in the Canadian Journal of Communication on the occasion of the launch of our journal.