Highlights from R2R 2023

Maverick Senior Associate Jayne Marks participated in the recent R2R conference and provides her perspectives in this recap.

Fully hybrid for the second year, the 2023 Researcher to Reader conference attracted speakers and delegates from around the world. The technology allowed for virtual/in-person discussions in small groups as well as participation via online chat with the in-person sessions. Key sessions included a review of the opportunities from online meetings and meeting content, the need for a wider discussion about preservation, and data-driven decision-making.

There were also sessions on open science but not the typical discussions about business models. There was a panel looking at funding, one on the value of open research and a lively debate: “Do open research practices make science better?” Dr Karin Wulf from Brown University and Steven Heffner from IEEE made a spirited case for the negative by focusing on the current practices that are not working for all disciplines.

One of the unique features of this meeting is a strong focus on specific issues through a series of workshops. Delegates can opt for one of five subject areas and get together in small groups both in person and online to discuss and come up with recommendations for further work. The subjects this year were: Strategies for Improving Sustainability; Open Access Requirements for Books; Bridging the Funder Mandate Gap; Research Integrity Tools and Challenges in Supporting Inclusiveness. All good topics where there is plenty of work still to be done.

I attended the funder mandate gap workshop, which turned out to be a focus on research data management and funder mandates with respect to data deposit. The session was so much more productive because the group discussion had representation from researchers, information scientists, funders, online hosting services and publishers. This gave us an opportunity to hear the challenges that each of these stakeholder groups have with respect to data. I came away with a much clearer understanding of some of the problems and also a better understanding of what is going to be required of publishers.

The last panel discussion of the two days was one that I was delighted to be able to moderate. Again, with the clear focus to hear from different stakeholders, we were able to hear from Robert Kiley (cOAlitionS) representing funders, Richard Gallagher (Annual Reviews) representing publishers, Wilhelm Widmark (Stockholm University Library) representing librarians and Alex Freeman (Director at Octopus, UKRI) representing researchers. The discussion focused on innovation to deliver open research and was able to explore some of the questions that can hold us back in delivering full open research. My key learning from this was that we are not going to move as fast as we would like if we don’t stop to listen to our colleagues who work in other parts of the scholarly communication process. More of the debate through the meeting can be found on Twitter at #R2RConf.


By Jayne Marks, Maverick Senior Associate

Jayne Marks brings over 40 years of scholarly publishing experience to Maverick. She has worked at senior levels in a variety of companies helping to devise and deliver on business strategies tailored for different markets. Throughout her career Jayne has responded to ever changing market environments by developing new product, sales, or content strategies to maximize new opportunities. Jayne’s primary focus has been on understanding the needs of the customers and markets that her products serve and ensuring they evolve to meet changing needs.