Great expectations: The role of Open Access in improving countries’ recognition
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Open Access movement has been proven to be capable to enhance the recognition of scientific outputs by improving their visibility. However, it is not clear how different entities benefit from the Open Access advantage; because, the recognition process is dominated by some psychological or realistic biases, resulting in an unequal distribution of citations between different entities. The biases may be exacerbated in Open Access world, e.g. due to the scientists uncertainty about the quality of Open Access materials, or quantitatively or qualitatively unequal presence of countries. Consequently, although, Open Access is able to achieve their potential citations, it is not unlikely that it increases the inequalities, depriving the already “have-nots”. Trying to illuminate how countries are benefiting from Open Access advantage, this study compares citation performances of the world’s countries in two journal sets, i.e. Open Access and non Open Access journals. The results of the analyses conducted at subject field level show that overall recognition gap between developed and less-developed blocks is widened by publishing in Open Access journals. The verification of individual countries’ performances confirms the finding by revealing that open-access-advantaged nations are mainly consisted of developed ones. However, some open-access-advantaged instances are from the less-developed block, which may promisingly suggest early heralds of Open Access potentialities to achieve the recognition of “lost sciences”, leading to relative reparation of the gap in future.
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