Open access journals less rigorous? Nobel Prize winner says no.

Many thanks to Retraction Watch for calling our attention to an interview with eLife editor-in-chief and Open Access advocate Randy Schekman, a 2013 Nobel Laureate. The interview was published in Mètode, Popular Science Journal of the University of Valencia by Lucía Sapiña and Manuel Gil. Here’s a brief exchange from the full interview:

Are open-access journals less rigorous?
It’s not a question of whether they’re open-access or not. That’s a false distinction. There are other journals that are commercial or run by scientific societies that also have low standards. And I don’t think that just because a journal is open-access, that makes them somehow more suspicious. It’s true, there are businesses out there, they are looking to exploit the open-access movement to make money, and the buyer must be aware. As I said earlier, if you want to publish in one of these new journals, look at the composition of the editorial board and see who’s actually putting their time in to make it a successful venture. And that should be the deciding factor.

Good advice! Read more of this provocative interview here.

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