Photo of SCI 2022 participants

SCI 2022 highlights

The 2022 Scholarly Communication Institute was held from October 9-13, 2022. This year’s theme was Reckoning, Care, and Repair, and five teams were invited to participate based on proposals they submitted in the spring. You can read about their projects in the blog posts linked from here.

Highlights of this year’s institute were added throughout the days of the program, and appear below. Other information about the 2022 program will be added to the SCI 2022 home page as it becomes available.

If you’re interested in participating in future years, check back on the web site periodically (the request for proposals is typically announced in January) and follow our Twitter feed or the #TriangleSCI hashtag for news about the program.

Intercultural and interdisciplinary open resources supporting environmental justice

This is the fifth and final in a series of posts about each of the teams that will be attending SCI 2022 and their projects. This one was submitted by Jeff Gima.

Photo of wind turbines on a green hillside

Challenge and context

The April 2022 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, “Mitigation of Climate Change”, provides a harsh assessment of how far behind we are on commitments to reversing climate change trends, and of how urgent action on the climate has become. The IPCC’s February 2022 report, “Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability,” reminds us of the importance of engaging in climate action from a perspective of equity and justice, recognizing the inequitable impact of climate change on parts of the world most vulnerable, least able to combat, and least responsible for, climate change.

In the context of this broad challenge, there are a few challenges specific to global higher education that members of AMICAL Consortium may be well placed to work on, in a modest way that our means and reach permit:

  • the need for greater global availability and visibility of teaching resources and scholarship on the environment arising from the global south, given their current underrepresentation
  • the need for future global citizens and leaders from the global south, regardless of their field of study, to learn how their work, and their intellectual and personal interests, may relate to and impact the environment in their part of the world and elsewhere.
Map showing location of AMICAL consortium members

Member institutions in the AMICAL Consortium

AMICAL is a group of 29 international liberal arts colleges and universities following an American model of higher education but based outside the United States, in 20 countries across the Middle East, Central and Southern Asia, Africa and Europe. AMICAL has historically focused on professional development and project support that brings librarians, technologists and faculty at these institutions together, encouraging closer collaboration in their shared educational missions.

This combination of relevant stakeholders for collaborating on open educational resources and scholarship, our inherently multicultural learning environments, and our balance of members from the global north and south, provides our team with a strong basis for working on intercultural & interdisciplinary open resources supporting environmental justice. Our team therefore aims to build a program of support for the development of innovative and collaborative curricular resources, pedagogy and scholarship from a wide range of disciplines and contexts of application at AMICAL member institutions, including:

  • environmental studies, environmental science, environmental humanities, etc.
  • other disciplines affording an interdisciplinary connection to environmental topics (political science, literature, philosophy, etc.)
  • co-curricular programs and activities, wherever possible involving outreach and collaboration with neighboring institutions, organizations and communities

Tentative project plans

To do this, we plan to develop collaboratively with faculty, librarians and instructional designers at AMICAL institutions a program with multiple areas of action, combining support for OER and OA content development with support for OER and OA capacity building. Our “intercultural & interdisciplinary open resources supporting environmental justice” project, tentatively abbreviated as “Open Resources for Environmental Justice”, would:

  • Help faculty and staff to build capacities for using, adapting and creating Open Educational Resources through
    • sharing of outreach and awareness materials
    • training and consultation
    • faculty stipends for adapting/creating OER
    • shared infrastructure (e.g. platforms for creating and publishing OER)
  • Curate a consortial collection of Open Educational Resources produced by members around environmental and related studies, in support of:
    • course and curriculum development
    • pedagogy (materials for improving teaching practice, possibly produced by faculty development centers at AMICAL member institutions)
    • co-curricular programs and activities that bridge class, student life and community
  • Identify and help implement models for promoting and managing Open Access scholarship at member institutions (through sharing best practices, models appropriate for AMICAL institutions, members’ OA policies, etc.)
  • Provide technical and financial support to authors from AMICAL institutions to publish environment-related scholarship under Open Access frameworks, with a focus on scholars from or related to underrepresented countries

Though some of the above activities can already be supported in preliminary and incidental ways by AMICAL, we hope to find funding to allow us to support these activities at a consortial scale.

Screen shot from site

A prototype for environment-related OER that could be supported by our Open Resources for Environmental Justice project:

One of our team members, Dr. Antonio Lopez, has already been developing a project,, a curated collection of resources for teaching on topics related to media literacy and the environment. Dr. Lopez’s project is not only an inspiration for the larger “Open Resources for Environmental Justice” project we’re working on at TriangleSCI, but also a prototype for the kind of environment-related OER collections that we hope to support through our larger project. We hope to develop a consortial framework for supporting projects like, learning along the way how to help our member institutions contribute to educational resources and scholarship representing the global south, in the most open and accessible way.

Team members

Our team includes colleagues from different AMICAL institutions and professional roles, including:

  • faculty members interested in building collaborative resources to advance environment-related teaching, scholarship or action
  • a librarian with experience in library-based OER and OA initiatives
  • an instructional designer with experience collaborating with faculty on the development of OER
  • consortial leadership staff with experience building and implementing collaborative programs

Antonio Lopez is an expert curriculum designer, educator, trainer, and theorist with a research focus on bridging ecojustice and media literacy. He is a founding theorist and architect of ecomedia literacy and creator of the website, for which he recently received a Marieli Rowe Innovation in Media Literacy Education Award. He has written numerous articles, essays, and books related to media literacy and the environment. Currently he is Professor of Communications and Media Studies at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy. In the context of this project, Antonio will be developing out, as an exemplar of collaborative work on OER for environment-related studies. He will also help shape our approach to working with faculty on environmental OER and scholarship generally.

Elena Berg is an Associate Professor of Environmental Science at the American University of Paris (AUP), where she teaches courses in environmental science, evolutionary biology, animal behavior, and human evolution, and conducts laboratory research with her students on cooperation and conflict in seed beetles. She also directs AUP’s Environmental Science Center and chairs the university’s Advisory Board on Environmental Sustainability. For this project, Elena will help guide efforts to develop shared resources to support co-curricular activities, in particular at the intersection between teaching, research, and outreach related to campus sustainability efforts, or that help students to take what they are learning and doing in the classroom out into the communi​​ty.

Dalal Rahme is Data Services Librarian at the American University of Beirut, where she is currently leading a campus-wide initiative in support of OER. She is also Convener for AMICAL’s Open Education Interest Group and at AUB. Dalal will be helping to shape this project’s approach to OER and OA, both in terms of consortial initiatives (e.g. curation of a consortium-wide collection of OER) and in terms of how AMICAL might support activities at individual member institutions (e.g. supporting individual authors to publish in OA venues).

Nadine Aboulmagd is Senior Instructional Designer at The Center for Learning and Teaching at the American University in Cairo. Nadine has collaborated on the creation of several OER projects, including an open textbook with a Music professor, published by Rebus (her collaboration is briefly reported on here). She has expertise in areas such as online learning, blended learning, digital pedagogy, educational technology, faculty development, learner experience design and graphic design. On this project, Nadine will be helping to shape our approach to collaboration with faculty and faculty development centers on adapting and creating OER.

Alex Armstrong is Program & Technology Officer for the AMICAL Consortium. Alex co-develops AMICAL’s programs, manages all technology used by the consortium, and is responsible for communications and community development related to all of AMICAL’s programs. For this project, Alex will be helping to develop, implement and communicate with AMICAL members about any consortial-level programs. Alex will also lead planning and implementation of any technology-related aspects of the project, including identifying appropriate external resources that need to be sourced.

Jeff Gima is AMICAL Consortium Director. Jeff provides organizational leadership for AMICAL, manages all business aspects of the consortium’s operations and co-develops AMICAL’s programs. For this project, Jeff will provide overall project leadership at the consortial level, while helping to source funding for the project and plan for project sustainability.


[ Feature image by Appolinary Kalashnikova used under Unsplash Free License. Other images provided by the AMICAL team. ]


Towards Curing the Predatory Publishing Malady in the South: Community of Practice Approach to Developing Local Strategies and Toolkits

This is the fourth in a series of posts about each of the teams that will be attending SCI 2022 and their projects. This one was submitted by Nathan Woods.

Photo of a globe against blue sky

This project will examine predatory publishing practices in the global south, exploring how to mobilize community led strategies that center on locally generated ideas/knowledges, and knowledge sharing strategies designed to curb predatory publishing and enhance ethical and regionally relevant scholarly communications practices.

An international consensus definition of predatory journals and publishers is that “Predatory journals and publishers are entities that prioritize self-interest at the expense of scholarship and are characterized by false or misleading information, deviation from best editorial and publication practices, a lack of transparency, and/or the use of aggressive and indiscriminate solicitation practices” (1). According to the report from Inter Academy Partnership (IAP), predatory academic journals and conferences are motivated by profit rather than scholarship, soliciting articles and abstracts that prey on researchers’ desire to publish and present their work (2). The notable features of predatory publishing practices according to the report include rapid pay-to-publish or pay-to-present models without rigorous peer review, fake editorial boards, fraudulent impact factors, and aggressive spam invitations soliciting articles and abstracts, including outside of a researcher’s own expertise.

Despite the huge global interest in predatory or unethical publishing practices, predatory publishing has reached alarming levels in the global south as the number of predatory journals and publishers is growing at an accelerated rate. Consequently, researchers, especially early career and students continue to fall prey of predatory publishers with the attendant repercussion on loss of good scholarship in some instances by unsuspecting authors (3) or rather proliferation of bad scholarship in other cases thereby corrupting the scholarly communication landscape with unverifiable literature (4). The reason for this may be related to lack of awareness of the issue by young scholars. Alternatively, the controversial nature of the predatory publishing concept itself may generate apathy from stakeholders in the global south who are aggrieved for being on the receiving end of a global north-led label.

This controversy notwithstanding, predatory, or unethical publishing practices do exist, and varying measures have been proposed to eradicate them. IAP stated three drivers of predatory practices which are (a) the monetisation and commercialization of academic research output (b) research assessment/evaluation and (c) challenges and deficiencies in the peer-review system (2).

While numerous strategies have been proposed to address these factors, such as checklists and decision tree approaches like ‘Think.Check.Submit’ and ‘Think.Check.Attend’, questions remain whether these recommendations and campaigns are enough for research communities to overcome these practices. Are the researchers aware and following these platforms? Are predatory publishing and measures to curb them share the same level of perception in the global south as in the north? In these circumstances, research institutions, and tertiary education institutions in the global south need to develop their own community- led strategies to avoid predatory publishing practices.

Illustration of stacked books with one open and illuminated by a starBy engaging with community led strategies and initiatives we aim to end the barrier that has sidelined the global south’s scholarship to the periphery of global scholarship. We will work on a prototype CoP design that will address predatory publishing by utilizing and mobilizing locally generated ideas/knowledge. The strength of a CoP model is that it integrates social learning, knowledge sharing, and stakeholder needs and values to meaningfully enhance complex problem solving. Our work at Triangle will focus on three thematic areas of a CoP development:

  • Discover: Consolidate best practices and develop a forum for the exchange of information and best practice in ethical scholarly publishing and anti-predatory publishing.
  • Demonstrate: Support the adaptation of internationally recommended approaches such as the Think.Check.Submit and other principles, regulations or policies through the creation and support of a collaborative space such as Slack, Weblog, Google group/drive.
  • Mobilise: Through peer-to-peer physical/virtual mentoring programs and training sessions promote the discovery and adoption of practices/toolkits/knowledgebase to avoid predatory publishing practices.

Team Engagement and Output Plan

Our international team is uniquely composed to undertake this project and includes expert practitioners variously positioned throughout the scholarly communications ecosystem, including researchers, scholars, librarians and experts in stakeholder engagement and community of practice development. The team’s participation will result in an actionable research and implementation agenda to address predatory publishing in the global south, as well as potential stakeholders to help refine, develop, and implement the agenda as part of the inquiry central to the community of practice model. This includes identifying best practices, the research areas needed to flesh out the benefits, costs, and opportunities of successfully addressing predatory publishing, factors such as researchers’ needs, and obstacles to successful adoption of existing initiatives to address the problem.

Outcomes of this work will contribute in important ways to existing global strategies that often overlook the perspectives of local researchers in the global south. The major deliverable of our work at Triangle will be recommendations supporting the development of a continuously evolving CoP. This includes a proposed plan for regional CoP, and recommendations for developing a topical and regionally specific knowledge base, and suggestions for developing toolkits, local resource hubs, and other knowledge sharing formats, to enhance stakeholder learning and action to address predatory publishing and disseminate ethical practices in scholarly communications.

After the institute these recommendations will be further developed and shared as part of the design strategy supporting the ‘discover,’ ‘document,’ ‘mobilise’ work of community building, and to ultimately inform the development of local toolkits. Development and dissemination of institute outcomes will further support the iterative development of these materials with CoP stakeholders and is a necessary step in producing locally relevant and meaningful materials supportive of community building.  We will employ a broad approach to share the outcomes of our participation leveraging both offline and online platforms, sharing our work in related conferences or seminars, and through the design and organization of community building activities related to the development of the community of practice. Team members’ personal blogs/websites will be used to share with the international and regional communities we belong to, venues such as the Scholarly Kitchen, as well as peer-reviewed venues to report our project and its progress.

Our Team

Idowu Adegbilero-Iwari (Nigeria) is the first scholarly communications librarian in Nigeria with over 12 years of experience in academic librarianship. He is currently the Science/Scholarly Communications Librarian of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria. Idowu is an active member of international and local scholarly communication discussions and projects, including work in FORCE11, a global group of scholars, librarians, archivists, publishers, and research funders, and most recently the Sloan-funded Reimagining Educational Opportunities for Open (REPO), exploring open science virtual training and community development in response to the COVID-19 public health crisis… He is also an active contributor to the FORCE11 Scholarly Communications Institute (FSCI) where he has participated as both a student and facilitator. Regionally, Idowu is a member of the LIBSENSE group that is facilitating research and discussion on the adoption of Open science in Africa. He participates in its Infrastructure, Policy, and Training Working Groups. He also participates in the Eko Konnect project, a leading Nigeria national research and education network that is driving the adoption of open science in Nigeria. The team will benefit from his current research on predatory publishing and his general experiences in scholarly communication issues especially in the region under focus.

Dan Paul O’Donnell (Canada) is a Professor of English at the University of Lethbridge. He has nearly twenty years in establishing and leading community-based approaches to problems in research and teaching. He was the founding chair of the Force11 Scholarly Communications Institute (FSCI, 2017-) and founding chair or director of the Communities of Practice Digital Medievalist (SSHRC-funded, 2004-), Global Outlook: Digital Humanities (SSHRC, 2012-), Reimagining Educational Opportunities for Open (Sloan, 2020-2021), and Humanities Data Inquiry (SSHRC, 2021-). For several years he has been active in working on projects that bridge network gaps among researchers in the Global South and North, including GO: DH, the Lagos Summer School in Digital Humanities, and co-presenter (under the leadership of Barbara Bordalejo) of workshops on implicit bias and EDI at the Digital Humanities conference (2016- ). He will bring to the institute his cross-border experiences and especially his community-building expertise to bear on the team with useful contributions of northern perspectives as well.

Basiru Adetomiwa (Nigeria) is a Certified Librarian of Nigeria (CLN) and a Member of the Nigerian Library Association (NLA), and currently Head of the Circulation Services, Redeemers University Library. A seasoned Librarian, he has many years of experience in library automation, reference source and services and acquisition of library resources. His innovativeness and professional proficiency have helped modernise the Redeemer’s University Library services. He has trained more than forty libraries in library automation and digitization, developed, and implemented innovative professional services at the Redeemer’s University Library, and published broadly in high impact local and international formats. Dr Adetomiwa is passionate about open access, technologies in the library and the modernisation of the library environment. Adetomiwa is a 2019 Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) Fellow, IFLA ARL Attendance grant winner from Africa 2019, 2018 Young Investigators Award Recipient, Seattle, USA. FORCE16 fellow and recipient of the 2015 Northwest Interlibrary Loan (NWILL) Scholarship award. The institute and the team will benefit from his experiences with scholarly communication issues and technologies plus his ongoing research in predatory publishing.

Shaharima Parvin (Bangladesh) is Assistant Librarian at East West University, Dhaka, Bangladesh with more than 10 years’ experience in information science and library management. Her current role includes managing the acquisitions life cycle of electronic resources including subscriptions, access, troubleshooting, usage analysis, and budgeting. She obtained a BA and MA in Information Science and Library Management from University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Shaharima is an independent researcher with interests in Open Access, Open Education, Creative Commons, the Open Science Framework and Open Data. She has held numerous diverse positions including SIG-USE Recruitment/Membership Officer of Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T), Country Ambassador of The Center for Open Science, USA, Country Ambassador of CORE, UK, and Country Ambassador of International Librarians Network (ILN). She is enthusiastic about travel, reading and writing. She loves working with diverse groups of people and appreciates taking on new challenges and exploring unique experiences such as would be provided by this work. Shaharima brings tremendous contextual perspectives from Asia to the group and the institute.

Samir Hachani (Algeria) is a Professor of Library Science at the School of Library and Information Science, Algiers University 2.  He holds a PhD from Algiers University 2 and a MSLS from University of Southern California. A specialist on scholarly communication and open access in the global south, his work actively addresses issues related to peer review, and the influence of open access on the peer review process. He has extensively published on issues related to open access and the global south such as digital divide, and disseminated this work broadly at conferences, and as an instructor at the Force11 Scholarly Communications institute (FSCI). Samir is a member of the editorial Board of The Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication (Iowa State University Press) and an associate member of Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Dr. Hachani adds a Middle Eastern perspective to the work of the team at Triangle, drawing on his extensive research and experience in the region’s scholarly communication landscape.

Nathan D. Woods (Canada & U.S.A) is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Lethbridge where he is currently studying research data infrastructures in the humanities and heritage sectors. He is an anthropologist and information scientist whose interdisciplinary work focuses on the intersection of research and practice on issues related to the production, dissemination, use, and stewardship of science, scholarship, and the cultural record. This work contributes to conversations in scholarly communications in multiple ways, including previous experience working with diverse stakeholders to address the continued citation of retracted research. His larger research agenda considers the complex and dynamic socio-technical relationships between knowledge, the design of institutions, and the organization of expert work. Ongoing projects explore the changing organization of scholarship; the science-policy interface; and the democratization of knowledge production. Dr. Woods specializes in the study, design and development communities of practice and will bring this perspective to the Triangle Institute, along with his knowledge of participatory design processes, and experience mapping stakeholder issues in the scholarly communications ecosystem.


  1. Grudniewicz A, Moher D, Cobey KD, Bryson GL, Cukier S, Allen K, et al. Predatory journals: no definition, no defence. Nat 2021 5767786 [Internet]. 2019 Dec 11 [cited 2022 Apr 29];576(7786):210–2. Available from:
  2. IAP. Combatting Predatory Academic Journals and Conferences [Internet]. 2021. Available from:
  3. Xia J, Harmon JL, Connolly KG, Donnelly RM, Anderson MR, Howard HA. Who publishes in “predatory” journals? J Assoc Inf Sci Technol. 2015;66(7):1406–17.
  4. Laine C, Winker MA. Identifying predatory or pseudo-journals. Biochem Medica. 2017;27(2):285–91.

[ Images by Lucas George Wendt and 愚木混株 cdd20 used under Unsplash Free License ]