Impressions of the National Open Science Festival 2022

This text is an adaptation of the text originally published by the Open Science Festival blog.

On 1 September 2022, the second edition of the Netherlands National Open Science Festival took place at the Vrije Universiteit (VU) in Amsterdam. The program consisted of plenary sessions and three rounds of workshops where participants engaged with a variety of aspects pertaining to Open Science. Around 300 participants attended on-site, while over 400 joined the plenary sessions via the live stream.

At the plenary session Jeroen Geurts, a rector at VU was asked ‘Is science open enough?’, and answered ‘No. When researchers feel the need to publish in Nature they tend to sit on their data for a long time. That’s why Recognition and Rewards has to become an international movement as an integral aspect of Open Science.’ His answer brought forth different aspects of Open Science that were discussed throughout the day.

When Minister Robbert Dijkgraaf joined the conversation, he emphasized the importance of Open Science by stating that the dissemination of knowledge is the best way to fight global inequality. He also joked: ‘We scientists see ourselves as a smart community; but then I ask you: how did we end up with such a dumb publishing system?’. He is aware of the issues that need to be resolved and announced that 20 million euros per year will be made available for Open Science starting next year, with NWO in a coordinating role.

Interactive workshops and sessions

The themes of the workshops held in three parallel sessions illustrate the wide scope and inspiring developments in Open Science.

In Building Research Dream Teams the participants discussed a fictional research project to survey aspects like stakeholders, ethics, academic value and commercialization. This exercise revealed different roles essential to realizing the projects' goals, that not all are necessarily academic and that the divide between academic, support and public is increasingly indistinct.

In Two perspectives on Diamond Open Access publishing: the participants discussed questions surrounding starting a new Diamond Open Access journal: How to find people to collaborate with and funds for experienced and motivated editing staff? How to enhance the efficiency of the editing process? But the importance of Recognition and Rewards was yet again stressed by acknowledging that Diamond Open Access publishing won’t be standard as long as publishing in journals like Nature is more valued than publishing in new journals.

The workshop Creating an audience for Citizen Science projects focused on volunteers in citizen science projects. The historical database of the Suriname and Curaçao (HDSC) case presented the following recommendations. Though the HDSC were helped by the media (even the NOS news), they looked for their audience at targeted events. It’s important to define your target group precisely, and communicate: be very clear on the purpose of the study, articulate what volunteers are to gain, and keep in touch throughout the project.”


At lunch, the participants could meet representatives of research groups and communities involved in Open Science in the marketplace in the atrium. Among them Opening up the Social Sciences through digital data infrastructure (ODISSEI), the Student Initiative for Open Science (SIOS) and The Turing Way a collaborative guide on ethical data science.

The full list of sessions, workshops and marketplace participants is available in the full programme of this inspiring event.

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Dutch National website providing information for academics about the advantages of open access to publicly financed research

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