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Thursday, 18 May 2023

Celebrating DORA's 10th Anniversary: SOMMa Highlights the Importance of Open Science and Research Assessment Reforms

by Àlex Argemí

SOMMa recently commemorated the 10th anniversary of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), sparking dialogue on the reform of scientific research evaluation systems. ICN2's Strategy Development team played a vital role in this discussion, with SOMMa underlining the imperative for precise, judicious scientific output assessment.

The direct impact of scientific research on society and economic competitiveness has been a global subject of discussion for the scientific community, underlining the need for refined evaluation systems for scientific production outcomes.

Marking the 10th anniversary of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), the SOMMa alliance brought together its Open Science professionals and various experts to examine the new policies in research activity evaluation reform, particularly their influence on the progression of research careers.

SOMMa's Open Science group, coordinated by Núria Benítez from the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2) and Miguel Ángel Benítez from the Basque Center for Applied Mathematics (BCAM), is actively working to boost and accommodate the potential changes offered by new policies developed by DORA or the International Coalition for the Advancement of Research Assessment (CoARA). Pilar Paneque, Director of ANECA, was also involved in the event.

The central focus of the discussion held in Bilbao on May 17 was the roundtable on "The reform of the evaluation of science and its impact on talent attraction and retention". Notably, the event, which attracted an audience of over 100 online, also featured Eva Méndez from CoARA presenting the key elements of this European agreement, aimed at driving necessary reforms for research evaluation based on qualitative criteria.

SOMMa, presently comprising 65 entities spanning a wide array of scientific disciplines, aims to promote internationally the excellent research produced by all its members and increase the scientific, social, and economic impact. It advocates a research evaluation reform based on the quality of the research itself, rather than the prestige of the publication medium. Current reality evidences the lack of global protocols guiding scientific evaluation systems, emphasising the need for preventing the mechanisation of this vital topic for the future of research.

Information via: SOMMA Alliance