The obsession with metrics and ‘publish not perish’ is distorting science into something unrecognisable. Something has to change! We have included links to seven related items.
This paper comments on the phenomenon of “publish or perish” associated with the current information explosion and its awful consequence: the curse that hangs over academia which dooms it to publish incessantly irrelevant and pointless documents. The overabundance of publications is not justified and is not even necessary in many contexts for personal promotion, and even less for the advancement of science. Therefore, the current role of scientific journals is highly questionable that its aim could be misleading. Huge numbers of articles are published, but they are not read because the aim is principally “publish for publish,” or publication for its own sake. The standard corrective tool for improving scientific communication—peer review—cannot function adequately, and biases and perversions are introduced which undermine society’s confidence in the scientific enterprise. A dark landscape unfurls itself across the world of scientific information, forcing us to question and improve its current state. Methodologically this paper goes halfway between the essay and the review trying to provoke engaged and useful controversy.
Fernandez-Cano, A. Letter to the Editor: publish, publish … cursed!. Scientometrics 126, 3673–3682 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11192-020-03833-7
Publisher (Open Access): https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11192-020-03833-7