New Publication - Open and collaborative writing of scientific articles with Massively Open Online Papers

A new publication by CRI Research Fellow Bastian Greshake Tzovaras and his collaborators just appeared in the journal KULA: Knowledge Creation, Dissemination, and Preservation Studies ! The paper presents how publications can be written in an open, distributed and collaborative fashion.

There is now a wealth of digital tools – such as Google Docs, Overleaf or Authorea – to collaboratively write scholarly publications while the authors are distributed across the globe. But traditionally, the list of authors and contributors is predefined before the writing process actually starts. The idea of Massively Open Online Papers (MOOPs) breaks with this tradition. Instead, MOOPs are defined by an openly participatory process that invites a wide range of contributors, allowing the spontaneous formation of interdisciplinary teams of authors. As a result this approach can be particularly valuable in citizen science projects, where large groups of academic and non-academic participants do research together and are ultimately interested in publishing their findings.

The now published article presents 3 examples as case studies for how MOOPs can be used in different fields, along with 10 recommendations for best practices. They cover things like types of contributors & contributions in MOOPs, the choice of digital tools, the structuring & distribution work and the resolution of conflicts. These recommendations are designed to help structure and implement the writing of MOOPs.

The article is freely available at