AMRC Open Research

AMRC Open Research is making strides for charity-funded research

Patient-focused research

Moving up a gear – all AMRC members and supporter organizations can now publish on AMRC Open Research. The innovative publishing platform has expanded since its launch to amplify the reach of patient-focused research.

Jocelyn LeBlanc, Research, Data and Impact Manager at AMRC, announces our plans to make the platform more inclusive, so that it can remain a valued place to share and discover trusted health-related research that is open, accessible, usable, and reusable.

I am thrilled to announce that AMRC Open Research publishing platform is now open to all researchers funded by any AMRC member charity or supporter organization, as well as grant holders and researchers working at affiliated institutions, centres or research networks.

We are excited to welcome all member charities and supporters to publish on the platform. AMRC Open Research offers a flexible, cost-effective publishing option that encourages open research practices. We want to ensure all our members and their research communities can make use of it.

Our members and supporters fund research that is shaped by people living with health conditions and diseases. This is how vital breakthroughs have been made, improving our understanding of disease and ensuring it delivers the changes that matter most to the people and families living with them.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on medical research charities. Many charities have been forced to cut funding for research projects and clinical trials. These disruptions and cancellations could delay medical advances that have the potential to offer life-changing treatments to millions of people. Now more than ever, it is essential that the outputs of the research we fund are freely available as quickly and as widely as possible to save and improve the lives of thousands of patients.

Maximizing the impact of health-related research

Open research is becoming increasingly important, with initiatives such as The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) which pledges to broaden the range of impact measures to evaluate the quality of research content, and Plan S gaining momentum globally. AMRC Open Research helps ensure that medical research charities are at the forefront of this movement; empowering our members and helping ensure that their outputs can bring about real improvements to patients’ lives. 

AMRC Open Research addresses many of the challenges of the current publishing system head-on. The platform speeds up the process of sharing research, increases transparency with open peer review, and is inclusive of all research outputs regardless of novelty or result. This approach, coupled with AMRC Open Research’s open data and method policies, supports reproducibility.

As well as original Research Articles, researchers can publish a diversity of article types including Methods, Study Protocols, Reviews, Data Notes, and Research Notes. In this way the Platform helps to reduce research waste, by ensuring that all the outputs of research are published, including null and negative results which researchers may have difficulty publishing elsewhere. This ensures that charity-funded research can progress quicker and bring benefits to patients sooner.

Putting patients first

Nicola Perrin, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, who will be taking over as CEO at AMRC from 12th November says: “Medical research charities fund high-quality research to save and improve lives. AMRC Open Research is designed to ensure all research results can be shared rapidly and widely, helping to minimize duplication and waste and maximize the potential for real world impact for patients.”

We asked some of our founding partners to share their experiences with AMRC Open Research. Here’s why they think it’s great:

Rosa Sancho, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK:

“At Alzheimer’s Research UK, we believe that making outputs of research freely available as widely as possible creates a richer research environment and helps to advance dementia science. Otherwise, scientific progress could be impeded, and this could have real consequences for people’s lives. AMRC Open Research offers our researchers a way to do this and enables them to publish negative data and results, helping us reduce duplication in research and encourage more information sharing.”

David Dexter, Deputy Director of Research at Parkinson’s UK:

“Parkinson’s UK fully supports the AMRC Open Research platform because the charity considers it critical that all the research data from the studies it funds is published, and this platform helps facilitate this. This will expand knowledge within the Parkinson’s research community but will importantly increase the visibility of Parkinson’s UK funded studies to people affected by Parkinson’s. This includes the publishing of negative studies, often hard to publish in mainstream journals, which will prevent valuable research resources being wasted on similar studies in the future. It is also important to publish full protocols, since this allows the replication of key datasets by other research groups, and often the lack of reproducibility across research teams is a major barrier to drug development.”

Growing our influence

This innovative publishing model is gaining traction in the research community, as shown by the success of other similar platforms powered by F1000.

Wellcome Open Research started publishing articles in November 2016. Within four years it is the single most used publishing venue for Wellcome funded researchers. Open Research Europe swiftly passed the 100 article milestone after only six months of publishing its first articles. HRB Open Research has gone from strength to strength since its launch in 2018. For the third year running the platform is the first most used publication venue for HRB funded researchers.

We are inspired by these achievements and hope that our expansion plans for AMRC Open Research will generate a similar outcome and maximize the impact of our charities’ research.

Visit AMRC Open Research to learn more about the platform and view the published articles. Please contact us if you have any questions and start submitting.