Open science action plan: response to the Government of Canada Roadmap for Open Science

 
Date: June 2021
Prepared by: National Research Council of Canada

Table of contents

 

1. Introduction

The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has a rich history of creative collaboration and engagement with the scientific and research community, both in Canada and internationally. As Canada’s largest federal performer of research and technology development, the NRC plays a leadership role within the Canadian science, technology, and innovation ecosystem by advancing scientific excellence, supporting industry and business innovation, and collaborating with government, academia and international partners.

As a Government of Canada institution, the NRC aligns with the Open Government and Open Science commitments of the federal government and science-based departments and agencies, and seeks to maximize the open release of our publications and research outputs to the greatest extent possible. Open Science is underpinned by principles of transparency, fairness, and equity, aligning fully with the NRC’s vision of “A better Canada and world through excellence in research and innovation.” The international scientific community’s response to the global pandemic has clearly demonstrated the collective benefits of open and shared research methods, data and publications, and the NRC has played an important role in these efforts.

In 2020, the federal Office of the Chief Science Advisor issued the Roadmap for Open Science, which outlined core principles and 10 recommendations to guide Open Science activities in Canada. The recommendations call for a phased and incremental adoption of Open Science approaches, which apply to all federally funded scientific and research outputs. Since a number of recommendations require direct action by federal science-based departments and agencies, science departments were asked to develop a responsive action plan articulating specific commitments and goals that respond to the Roadmap’s recommendations. This document outlines the NRC’s commitments and actions.

The diversity of our research activities requires the NRC to take a range of approaches to open science.  Some of our research and business activities necessitate the secure and confidential protection of data, including the confidential information of partners and clients, while in other research domains, the NRC is a leader in open research practices. Building on a solid base, this plan establishes a series of commitments aimed at enhancing and growing our open science practices, where feasible and aligned with the NRC’s research and business practices. From these foundational activities, the NRC will continue to augment its open science practices, while also contributing to the shared commitments of the federal science community as a whole.

2. Context

2.1 About the NRC

As Canada's largest federal research and development organization, the NRC works with partners to deliver a national platform for innovation, by conducting research, supporting small and medium-sized enterprises, and enabling cross-sector partnerships and collaboration in Canada and abroad. Located in research facilities across the country, the NRC’s scientists, engineers, technicians, and other specialists pursue leading-edge R&D opportunities in a wide range of research fields, including:

  • aerospace engineering and manufacturing
  • astronomy
  • high-throughput DNA sequencing
  • quantum photonics
  • biotechnology
  • nanotechnology, and more.

The NRC places a strong emphasis on research collaboration, and works closely with universities, other governments and research organizations, often in shared collaborative facilities, to explore research themes of shared mutual interest and work on game-changing scientific discoveries to advance specific objectives in a range of disciplines. The NRC also collaborates with international partners such as the United Kingdom, and has established offices in Germany and Japan. Internationally the NRC also plays a key role in a number of science and technology networks, and has been an adhering member to the International Science Council (ISC) since 1931. The NRC is active in 30 international scientific organizations, most of which fall under the ICSU umbrella, and engages in a range of global Open Science commitments through participation in these scientific unions.

2.2 The NRC’s scientific publications

The NRC produces a range of publicly available scientific and research information.  Among these are the publications of Codes Canada, many of which are now available directly through the NRC Publications Archive in free electronic format, as well as departmental publications used to plan and report on our research and business activities. The majority of the NRC’s scientific publications are peer-reviewed and disseminated through commercial scientific publishers. For these types of publications, the NRC uses commercially available bibliographic databases to track output metrics and glean insights into the value and use of NRC-authored peer-reviewed publications, and these bibliometric indicators are incorporated into the NRC’s performance measurement framework. NRC researchers publish (as author or co-author) approximately one thousand peer-reviewed publications per year.Footnote 1 Between 2016 and 2020, the rate of publication was relatively stable with an average of 1,078 publications over the five year period (Figure 1 ).

Figure 1

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Figure 1 - Long description

Line graph depicting the number of peer-reviewed publications authored or co-authored by NRC staff each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC had 1105 peer-reviewed publications in 2016.

NRC had 1019 peer-reviewed publications in 2017.

NRC had 1082 peer-reviewed publications in 2018.

NRC had 1092 peer-reviewed publications in 2019.

NRC had 1090 peer-reviewed publications in 2020.

 

In terms of publication type, the majority of NRC publications are peer-reviewed journal articles published in commercial journal publications, followed by some conference proceedings and books/book chapters (Figure 2).

Figure 2

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Figure 2 - Long description

Bar chart depicting the number of peer-reviewed publications authored or co-authored by NRC staff, by document type (articles, conference papers or books/chapters). Data is presented for each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2016

  • Articles: 767
  • Conference Papers: 307
  • Books/Chapters: 31

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2017

  • Articles: 756
  • Conference Papers: 241
  • Books/Chapters: 21

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2018

  • Articles: 759
  • Conference Papers: 298
  • Books/Chapters: 23

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2019

  • Articles: 794
  • Conference Papers: 263
  • Books/Chapters: 35

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2020

  • Articles: 810
  • Conference Papers: 277
  • Books/Chapters: 3
 

The majority of NRC-authored publications are co-published with external collaborators (Figure 3).

Figure 3

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Figure 3 - Long description

Bar chart depicting the number of peer-reviewed publications authored or co-authored by NRC staff, by document type (articles, conference papers or books/chapters). Data is presented for each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC collaboratiNRC collaboration rate 2016: 85.2%

NRC collaboration rate 2017: 83.4%

NRC collaboration rate 2018: 79.5%

NRC collaboration rate 2019: 79.1%

NRC collaboration rate 2020: 83.5%

 

NRC researchers co-publish with Canadian and international organizations (Figure 4Footnote 2 ). The top collaborators are the University of Ottawa (470 co-publications) and the University of Alberta (455 co-publications). The Centre national de la recherche scientifique (France) ranks third with 393 co-publications. Of the top collaborators, NRC co-publishes primarily with academic institutions followed by government organizations.

Figure 4

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Figure 4 - Long description

A network diagram depicting the extent of the collaborations between NRC and it’s co-authoring organizations between 2016 and 2020. NRC is shown as a large node in the centre of the network diagram with lines connecting it to the nodes representing other organizations. The node size (which represents volume of publications) is similar for all collaborating institutions. The thickness of the lines connecting NRC to each node indicates the number of publications co-authored by the NRC with those organizations. The colour of the node indicates if the collaborating organization is an academic or government organization. Only collaborating organizations with 100 or more co-publications are depicted.

The organizations on the diagram are as follows, in order of the number of collaborations they have had with the with NRC during the same timeframe:

  1. University of Ottawa (Canada) – academic organization
  2. University of Alberta (Canada) – academic organization
  3. CNRS (Centre national de la recherche scientifique) (France) – government organization (also collaborates with University of Victoria, Canada)
  4. University of Victoria (Canada) – academic organization (also collaborates with CNRS, France)
  5. McGill University (Canada) – academic organization
  6. University of California (United States) – academic organization (also collaborates with California Institute of Technology, United States)
  7. Max Plank Society (Germany) – government organization
  8. University of Toronto (Canada) – academic organization
  9. University of British Columbia (Canada) – academic organization
  10. California Institute of Technology (US) – academic organization (also collaborates with University of California, United States)
  11. NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) (United States) – government organization
  12. University of Montréal (Canada) – academic organization
  13. Carleton University (Canada) – academic organization
  14. European Southern Observatory (Germany) – government organization
  15. INAF (Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica) (Italy) – government organization
  16. University of Waterloo (Canada) – academic organization
  17. University of Western Ontario (Canada) – academic organization
  18. University of Arizona (United States) – academic organization
  19. US Department of Energy (United States) – government organization
  20. National Astronomical Observatory or Japan (Japan) – government organization
  21. Chinese Academy of Sciences (China) – government organization
  22. Aix-Marseille Université (France) – academic organization
  23. Université Paris-Saclay (France) – academic organization
  24. CEA (France) – academic organization
  25. Harvard University (United States) – academic organization
  26. Université Paris Sciences & Lettres (France) – academic organization
  27. Dalhousie University (Canada) – academic organization
  28. University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) – academic organization
  29. Academia Sinica (Taiwan) – academic organization
  30. University of Calgary (Canada) – academic organization
 

NRC publications consistently achieve a solid scientific impact, demonstrated through a Field Weighted Citation Impact (FWCI) measure. The NRC’s FWCIFootnote 3 is consistently above the global mean of 1.00, indicating that the NRC’s publication impact is higher than average (Figure 5). Although the FWCI constantly fluctuates, the average FWCI for the 2016-2020 period is 1.39 indicating that, on average, NRC publications are cited 39% more than the world average when compared to similar publications.

Figure 5

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Figure 5 - Long description

Bar chart depicting the annual field-weighted citation impact (FWCI) of NRC peer-reviewed publications each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC FWCI 2016: 1.53

NRC FWCI 2017: 1.32

NRC FWCI 2018: 1.56

NRC FWCI 2019: 1.24

NRC FWCI 2020: 1.32

 

2.3 Current state - Open Science at the NRC

Open Science involves commonly accepted principles and practices that apply across all research disciplines, as well as common accepted practices that have evolved within individual scientific domains.

For the purposes of this action plan, the NRC has adopted the same general definition articulated in the Roadmap for Open Science. The roadmap defines Open Science as:

(t)he practice of making scientific inputs, outputs and processes freely available to all with minimal restrictions. Scientific research outputs include (i) peer-reviewed science articles and publications, (ii) scientific and research data and (iii) public contribution to and dialogue about science. Open Science is enabled by people, technology and infrastructure. It is practiced in full respect of privacy, security, ethical considerations and appropriate intellectual property protectionFootnote 4.

Open access publishing is one of the core tenets of Open Science, and the NRC has adopted various practices that enable open access publishing, including core investments in Green open access. The NRC Publications Archive (or “NPARC”) is an institutional repository of NRC-authored technical reports, peer-reviewed journal publications and conference proceedings, which serve as a valuable resource for researchers, collaborators and the public. Established in 2014, the repository contains over sixty thousand citations and approximately twenty thousand full text resources. NPARC provides a rich metadata schema, including persistent identifiers such as ORCID identifiers and Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs), which enable discoverability and linking across commercial and organizational research discovery platforms. Although publications deposited in NPARC are usually subject to an embargo period before they are eligible for open release, this established repository provides the NRC with a solid base from which to enhance and evolve open access publishing practices.

In addition to the use of NPARC, NRC researchers also publish in open access journals. There are currently no organizational requirements that mandate open access journal selection, although core principles that guide a researcher’s journal choice are articulated in the NRC Research and Scientific Integrity Policy.

Looking at all forms of open access, the number of peer-reviewed open access publications has been relatively constant over the past 5 years. An average of 45% of NRC-authored total peer-reviewed published output has been made available through some form of open access (Figure 6).

Figure 6

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Figure 6 - Long description

Bar chart comparing the total number of NRC peer-reviewed publications with the number of NRC peer-reviewed open access publications, each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2016

  • All publications: 1105
  • Open access: 484

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2017

  • All publications: 1019
  • Open access: 505

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2018

  • All publications: 1082
  • Open access: 523

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2019

  • All publications: 1092
  • Open access: 496

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2020

  • All publications: 1090
  • Open access: 439
 

Open access publications of NRC-authored peer-reviewed content include those that are publisher-enabled open access (“Gold”, “Gold Hybrid” or “Bronze” open access) and “Green” open access (enabled via an institutional repository) (Figure 7)Footnote 5. The use of the NRC’s institutional repository, NPARC, represents the majority of Green open access, but collaborator institutional repositories (such as partnering academic institutions) are also used for open deposit and dissemination. Figure 7 illustrates that, on average, 25% of the NRC’s 2016-2020 publications are available via publisher-enabled open access (“Gold”, “Gold Hybrid” or “Bronze” open access) leaving, on average, 20% of NRC open access publications available solely through “Green” open access via repositories such as NPARC, with or without embargo period.

Figure 7

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Figure 7 - Long description

Bar chart comparing the total number of NRC peer-reviewed publications, the number of NRC peer-reviewed publications with publisher-enabled open access, and the number of NRC peer-reviewed publications with green open access. Data is presented for each year from 2016 through 2020.

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2016

  • All publications: 1105
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 270
  • Green open access: 432

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2017

  • All publications: 1019
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 238
  • Green open access: 466

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2018

  • All publications: 1082
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 270
  • Green open access: 467

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2019

  • All publications: 1092
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 321
  • Green open access: 379

NRC’s peer-reviewed publications in 2020

  • All publications: 1090
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 274
  • Green open access: 310
 

Five year trending indicates that open access publishing rates are slightly higher for publications in which NRC authors co-publish with external collaborators (Figure 8). For example, in 2020, while 84% of all 2020 NRC publications were co-authored with another institution, 91% of the publisher-enabled open access publications and 95% of the Green open access NRC publications were co-authored with another institution. Overall, in 2020, 406 of the 439 NRC open access publications were co-published with external collaborators (92.5%).

Figure 8

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Figure 8 - Long description

Bar chart comparing the rates of collaboration on all NRC peer-reviewed publications, NRC peer-reviewed publications with publisher-enabled open access, and NRC peer-reviewed publications with green open access. Data is presented for each year from 2016 through 2020.

Collaboration rate for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2016

  • All publications: 85%
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 92%
  • Green open access: 92%

Collaboration rate for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2017

  • All publications: 83%
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 88%
  • Green open access: 91%

Collaboration rate for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2018

  • All publications: 80%
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 86%
  • Green open access: 91%

Collaboration rate for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2019

  • All publications: 79%
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 88%
  • Green open access: 96%

Collaboration rate for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2020

  • All NRC publications: 84%
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 91%
  • Green open access: 95%
 

Looking at the five year period, the top NRC collaborator for open access peer-reviewed publications is the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (France) with 360 open access co-publications. The University of Victoria (Canada) ranks second, and the University of California (USA) ranks 3rd with 277 publications. Overall, just over half of the organizations co-publishing open access publications with the NRC are international organizations. One NRC Research Center, the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre (HAA), Canada’s foremost authority on astronomy and astrophysics, has published approximately one-third of the NRC open access peer-reviewed publications between 2016 and 2020.

Figure 9

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Figure 9 - Long description

Horizontal bar chart depicting the top ten collaborators with NRC on peer-reviewed, open access publications. Collaborating institutions are ordered by their number of co-publications with NRC, between 2016 and 2020, from most to least.

Centre national de la recherche scientifique, France: 360 co-publications

University of Victoria, Canada: 329 co-publications

University of California, United States: 277 co-publications

University of Ottawa, Canada: 266 co-publications

University of Alberta, Canada: 259 co-publications

Max Planck Society, Germany: 248 co-publications

California Institute of Technology, United States: 188 co-publications

University of Toronto, Canada: 183 co-publications

National Institute for Astrophysics, Italy: 172 co-publications

European Southern Observatory, Germany: 172 co-publications

 

Open access publications at the NRC are generally cited more than average compared to similar publications of the same year, type and subject area. In fact, FWCI tends to be higher for NRC open access publications than for all NRC publications, indicating that open access publications have a larger scientific impact than non-OA publications (Figure 10).

Figure 10

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Figure 10 - Long description

Bar chart comparing the field weighted citation impact (FWCI) of all NRC peer-reviewed publications, NRC peer-reviewed publications with publisher-enabled open access, and NRC peer-reviewed publications with green open access. Data is presented for each year from 2016 through 2020.

FWCI for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2016

  • All publications: 1.53
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 2.41
  • Green open access: 1.84

FWCI for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2017

  • All publications: 1.32
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 1.95
  • Green open access: 1.70

FWCI for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2018

  • All publications: 1.56
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 2.54
  • Green open access: 2.43

FWCI for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2019

  • All publications: 1.24
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 1.50
  • Green open access: 1.65

FWCI for NRC’s peer-reviewed publications 2020

  • All publications: 1.32
  • Publisher-enabled open access: 1.52
  • Green open access: 1.98
 

The NRC also contributes to the effective discovery of open access publications through its role as operational lead for the Federal Science Libraries Network (FSLN). The FSLN provides access to a shared library catalogue and discovery platform, aggregating the print and digital publication holdings of seven federal science libraries including Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Fisheries and Oceans, Health Canada, Natural Resources Canada, the NRC, and the Public Health Agency of Canada. The NRC also provides digital subscription services to the FSLN, and is currently exploring transformative agreement options with one of the major publishers through this co-funded model.

In terms of open data, a comprehensive snapshot of the NRC’s current Open Science activities is more challenging, as commercially available bibliographic sources do not offer the same holistic picture of data publication and open release, and data practices are embedded within the diverse research activities underway across the organization. A current state assessment demonstrates that some research centres have established open data practices that align with their own internal business and research activities, collaborator requirements, and general trends within their areas of scientific activity and research. A key example is the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics (HAA) Research Centre. Responsible for Canada’s largest and most powerful observatories, HAA provides extensive data management and analysis tools through the Canadian Astronomy Data Centre.

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Photo of the Canadian Astronomy Data Centre (CADC) building

The Canadian Astronomy Data Centre (CADC) is one of the largest and most powerful astronomy data management centres in the world, housing some of the world's most important astronomical data collections, including those from the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT), the twin Gemini telescopes and the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope.

Delivering over a petabyte (1 million gigabytes) of data to nearly 6,000 astronomers each year, CADC data has helped safely guide the first close spacecraft encounter with Pluto and enabled the discovery of supermassive black holes that reveal secrets to the origin of the Universe. CADC's data collection, along with its world-leading cloud infrastructure for astronomy, provides a unique resource for data-intensive astrophysical research.

As part of the international astronomy community, HAA is a leader in the curation, sharing and management of large data sets.

The Metrology Research Centre delivers high-precision measurement science, maintains Canada’s official time, and maintains a comprehensive suite of mass spectrometers for speciation and quantification. Given the discipline’s emphasis on international standardization, Metrology’s staff, including Canada’s Chief Metrologist, are highly engaged in international Open Science activities in areas of measurement science.

The NRC is also in the process of providing enterprise services that support the release of open data, including exploratory activities with Canada’s New Digital Research Infrastructure Organization (NDRIO), and the publication of data sets through the NRC Digital Repository.

2.4 Internal consultations on Open Science

To move towards a common definition of Open Science and share thoughts on the challenges and opportunities that Open Science presents for the NRC, various consultation activities have taken place to date. These include online engagement through a collaborative platform in 2018, discussions at governance and researcher committees, and a series of consultative discussions led by the NRC Departmental Science Advisor in 2020. Key findings from these consultations include:

  • Enterprise governance over Open Science should be strengthened. Despite Open Science engagement in various research centres and enabling corporate groups, the NRC does not currently have an enterprise articulation of goals, targets and expectations.
  • Open Science awareness varies between research centres, and at the individual researcher level. Open access publishing practices vary considerably depending on the field of research and other factors, including career stage.
  • Researchers recognize the importance of Open Science to accelerate scientific discovery, and are committed to sharing within their scientific communities, except where specific restrictions (such as confidentiality) apply. The sharing of research data with peers and collaborators is often a higher priority for individual researchers than open access publishing.
  • It is a priority for researchers, as well as for the NRC as a whole, to establish an appropriate balance between enabling open/collaborative research, and the need to protect sensitive, confidential and proprietary data. New guidance, tools and technologies are required to assist in this critical exercise.
  • The NRC’s Open Science frameworks should take into consideration the diversity of NRC research outputs, while providing clear guidance on expectations and best practices.
  • The NRC Research and Scientific Integrity Policy provides researchers with flexibility in journal selection, when publishing. Many factors can influence choice of journal, including journal reputation and impact/reach, shared decision-making with external collaborators, and open access publishing. While retaining decision-making authority, research groups would benefit from additional tools and guidance to assist in these processes.
  • NRC researchers are largely aware of the NRC’s institutional repository (NPARC), but not all are fully aware of the importance of this repository for enabling open access, or their own responsibilities in meeting deposit requirements.
  • Meeting embargo-free open access publishing targets would require new funding sources.
  • Given the diversity of the NRC’s research activities, security considerations, and concurrent information technology (IT) renewal activities, enterprise open data initiatives will require detailed consideration in the coming years.

Consultation findings informed the action items articulated in the next section. In moving forward with Open Science, the NRC is taking an iterative approach, building on existing strengths and establishing flexible enterprise frameworks that can be adapted as needed to reflect the diversity of the NRC’s research activities.

3. Action plan

Proposed action items that respond to the recommendations of the Roadmap for Open Science and which will continue to enhance and build on existing Open Science practices are organized in four action areas:

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Long description

Four columns reprensented by an icon and the action area (from left to right):

  • Building an “open” culture.
  • Enabling open access to our published research.
  • Increasing the openness of our research data.
  • Measuring our progress.
 

3.1 Action area #1: Building an “open” culture

Action Activities Timelines
Establish governance Confirm Chief Scientific Data Officer and other designated roles and responsibilities for Open Science at the NRC. September 2021
  Confirm committee governance to ensure an ongoing dialogue and consultations on Open Science between research centres, senior management, and enabling policy and service leads. September 2021
  Establish a data governance committee which, as a component of overall data strategy implementation, incorporates open/FAIRFootnote 6 principles and actions. September 2021
  Establish Open Science leads within research centres and a community of practice (CoP) model for horizontal coordination and sharing of enabling services, tools, & best practices. November 2021
Confirm target state Leveraging the CoP, complete a detailed as-is assessment, including an inventory of research centre-specific processes and practices, as well as enterprise tools and services. January 2022
  Through consultation, depict a target state for NRC Open Science that aligns with Roadmap recommendations and reflects the NRC’s own business context. May 2022
  Update existing NRC policies, where applicable, to ensure alignment with Open Science governance, roles and responsibilities. July 2022
  Review the OCSA Guidance on Open by Default and finalize NRC-specific guidelines, to ensure consistent policy guidance on the types of information and data that are eligible for open release. (Training and awareness to be addressed under action areas 2 and 3). July 2022

3.2 Action area #2: Enabling open access to our published research

Action Activities Timelines
Increase NRC awareness and adoption of open access publishing practicese Develop an Open Access Publishing toolkit
for researchers and promote across the NRC research community to confirm the types of information eligible for open access, increase NPARC deposit rates, and maximize Green, Gold and hybrid open access publishing.
Toolkit:
March 2022 —
promotion ongoing
  Explore options for obtaining discounted open publishing fees (Article Processing Charges) for Gold open access, through new library/publisher agreements within the NRC and on behalf of the Federal Science Libraries Network (FSLN). Phased, starting in April 2021
  Through consultation with research centres, develop an inventory of NRC science publications other than peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters and conference proceedings, to ensure these are deposited to NPARC and that procedures and repository practices are updated as needed to accommodate all eligible research publications. November 2022
Develop and enhance solutions to enable the discovery of federal science outputs Develop an automated submission process for NRC researchers to easily deposit copies of peer-reviewed research publications in NPARC. March 2022
  Continue to work with the Office of the Chief Science Advisor, Shared Services Canada, the Federal Science Libraries Network, and other science departments to develop and evolve efficient, integrated and interoperable open repositories for federal science publications. Underway and ongoing
  Continue to participate in horizontal initiatives with the broader Canadian research ecosystem, to co-develop integrated discovery platforms and open repositories. Underway and ongoing

3.3 Action area #3: Increasing the openness of our research data

Action Activities Timelines
Increase NRC awareness and adoption of open data release practices, including FAIR principles

Collaboratively develop and launch an Open Data toolkit for researchers and promote across the NRC research community. Elements of the toolkit will address:

  • Types of research data that can be disclosed (per Guidelines on Open by Default)
  • Services available for NRC researchers
  • Repository options for open data deposit
  • Use of persistent identifiers (ORCID, DataCite DOIs)
  • Metadata and notation standards
  • Data Management Plan (DMP) best practices and templates
  • Guidance on the simultaneous publication of underlying/related data sets with peer-reviewed publications
Toolkit:
September 2022 —
promotion ongoing
  As part of an integrated data strategy, establish a descriptive inventory of eligible NRC data that meet open data criteria. Leverage the inventory to plan and execute incremental growth of NRC open data practices. November 2022
Confirm standardized approaches for attribution and reuse of NRC data that has been made open to the public Examine existing models and best practices for re-use and attribution of open data; establish appropriate NRC model(s) and promote through the Open Data toolkit. September 2022
  Establish an institutional platform and supporting processes for the open sharing of eligible source code (e.g. GitHub). March 2023

3.4 Action area #4: Measuring our progress

  Action Timelines
Confirm current state and incremental goals Baseline “as is” metrics for open access publishing and release of open data. September 2021
  Establish targets and incremental milestones for OA publishing and open release of data sets. December 2021
Report on progress Develop an indicators dashboard and report quarterly on progress through governance. Quarterly, beginning in December 2021

4. Summary of actions and timelines

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Long description

Open Science action plan activities timelines from 2021 and 2023 represented under the four action swimlanes.

Open Culture activities include:

  • Establish governance from Q2 to Q3 in 2021.
  • Process inventory and target state from Q3 in 2021 to Q1 in 2022.
  • Policies and guidelines from Q2 in 2022 to Q4 in 2023.

Open access publications include:

  • Explore transformative agreements from Q2 in 2021 to Q4 in 2022.
  • Publications inventory in Q1 to Q3 of 2022.
  • Open access publishing toolkit in Q3 of 2021 to Q2 of 2022.
  • NPARC submissions tools in Q3 of 2021 to Q1 of 2022.
  • Horizontal activities with other science departments and stakeholders for holistic approaches in Q2 of 2021 to Q4 of 2023.

Open data activities include:

  • Open Data Toolkit development in Q3 of 2021 to Q3 of 2022.
  • Data inventory in Q1 to Q3 of 2022.
  • Reuse and attribution analysis in Q4 to Q2 of 2022.
  • Code repository in Q3 of 2022 to Q4 of 2023.

Measure progress activities include:

  • As-is metrics in Q2 to Q3 of 2021.
  • Target metrics in Q3 of 2021 to Q4 of 2022.
  • Monitoring and reporting in Q4 of 2022 to Q4 of 2023.
 

5. Conclusion

Open Science is a core component of the NRC’s research and business context. Along with other science-based departments and agencies, and in step with the broader research community, the NRC will continue to build on current “open” practices by executing on action items outlined in this plan. These actions are intended to foster an organizational culture that recognizes and applies Open Science practices where appropriate; incrementally maximize the open release and sharing of the NRC’s scientific publications and data; and ensure an appropriate balance between openness and the need to protect sensitive research. Following the principles established by the Roadmap for Open Science, and through shared and collaborative approaches, the NRC will continue to contribute to the Government of Canada’s Open Science goals, creating new opportunities for innovation, partnership, and scientific discovery.