VBC postdoc symposium on publishing models

On Thursday the 5th September 2019, the Vienna BioCenter Postdoc Symposium on Publishing Models took place. The reason for organizing it was the realization of how little early-career scientists know about publishing models, Open Access and why it is actually relevant.

As organizers, Ulises Rey and Mara Andrione, gathered the postdoc community to discuss about these topics with experts from Austria and abroad. Invited speakers were: Karlo Pavlovic (Max Perutz library), Christian Gutknecht (Open Access activist), Gareth O’Neil (Plan S ambassador), Katharina Rieck (Open Science manager at the Austrian Science Fund FWF), and Christa Schleper (professor at the University of Vienna). 24 postdocs from the Vienna BioCenter were present, with all four research institutes represented.

The symposium was structured in three main parts, featuring presentations and panel discussions on: the publication and subscription system, Plan S, and career evaluation. A fourth and last part followed, where the participants divided themselves in groups and thoroughly discussed specific problems and possible solutions. Suggestions were collected and presented in a final discussion moment. The event raised a lot of interests and questions. All the postdocs present felt like they learned a lot and wanted to engage in possible follow-ups. Future steps will involve: 1) providing a short report about the postdoc concerns, suggestions and conclusions from the symposium to interested people from the campus, and 2) organizing another event specific on Plan S, with an expert elucidating the main points and goals of the action. 

Currently, single participants of the symposium are involved in giving meeting reports during lab meetings to their groups. Anyone interested in the topic is encouraged to contact colleagues who participated, or address the symposium organizers.