Varieties of diffusion in academic publishing: How status and legitimacy influence growth trajectories of new innovations
Siler, K. et Larivière, V. (2023). Varieties of diffusion in academic publishing: How status and legitimacy influence growth trajectories of new innovations. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 1-20
Open Access (OA) publishing has progressed from an initial fringe idea to a still-growing, major component of modern academic communication. The proliferation of OA publishing presents a context to examine how new innovations and institutions develop. Based on analyses of 1,296,304 articles published in 83 OA journals, we analyze changes in the institutional status, gender, age, citedness, and geographical locations of authors over time. Generally, OA journals tended towards core-to-periphery diffusion patterns. Specifically, journal authors tended to decrease in high-status institutional affiliations, male and highly cited authors over time. Despite these general tendencies, there was substantial variation in the diffusion patterns of OA journals. Some journals exhibited no significant demographic changes, and a few exhibited periphery-to-core diffusion patterns. We find that although both highly and less-legitimate journals generally exhibit core-to-periphery diffusion patterns, there are still demographic differences between such journals. Institutional and cultural legitimacy—or lack thereof—affects the social and intellectual diffusion of new OA journals.
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