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Octopus.ac: A new academic publishing model to improve research culture

15/06/2023 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Registration for this event is open

By joining this workshop you are agreeing to follow the UKRN code of conduct.



Octopus.ac is a new UKRI funded research publishing model, designed to encourage, enable, and reward best practice using 21st century tools. Free to read, free to publish, and entirely open source, this is a new way to register research that is fast, free and fair.

During this session we will discuss some of the problems with the established publishing model and research culture, how Octopus.ac seeks to solve them by espousing the principles of open research, and the challenges that Octopus.ac faces in a landscape dominated by incentive structures based around impact.

To frame the current state of research culture with regard to publishing, Dr Pen-Yuan Hsing will outline the findings of An Evaluation of the Research and Publishing Ecosystem, drawing on insights from surveys and interviews with researchers from a wide range of disciplines. The impact driven landscape has created a research culture where open research practises are viewed by many as not beneficial, or even detrimental to career advancement, meaning Octopus.ac’ development as a system must be guided its ability to serve as a solution to these concerns.

Moving away from the traditional journal paper, Octopus.ac uses smaller publication units which more closely align with the research process. The platform is designed to be the new primary research record for the academic community, to create a new culture of collaboration and recognition, improving access to research outputs and resetting the academic incentive structure to reward best practice and recognise specialisation.

To highlight how this new model is being received by the academic community, we will also explore the challenges, concerns and benefits that researchers identify when introduced to Octopus.ac, based on the insights gained via a series of workshops held by Evangelia Kotsiliti over the past few months.

Participants should gain a deeper understanding of the problems facing research culture, how Octopus.ac aims to provide a solution, and the perceptions of researchers regarding publishing, both in general and in relation to Octopus.ac specifically.


  • Dr Pen-Juan Hsing – Research Associate, University of Bristol
  • John Kaye – Head of Product, Jisc
  • Tim Fellows – Product Manager, Jisc
  • Evangelia Kotsiliti – Information Manager: Research & Scholarly Communications, University of Hertfordshire


Programme (GMT+1)

13:00 Welcome and Introduction

13:05 Evaluating the research culture and the publishing ecosystem – Dr Pen-Yuan Hsing

13:35 Issues in research publishing: your thoughts & experiences – small group discussion (10 min)

13:45 Octopus.ac as a concept – John Kaye

14:00 Break (5 mins)

14:05 Octopus.ac as a platform – Tim Fellows

14:20 Octopus.ac’s ability to solve issues in research culture – small group discussion (5 min)

14:25 Researcher feedback when presented with Octopus.ac as a solution – Evangelia Kotsiliti

14:45 Panel Q&A

15:00 End



1:00 pm - 3:00 pm