Editorial Policy

Diamond route of Open Access

The Digital Paul Scholten Project (DPSP) is a research project, hosted by the faculty of Law of the University of Amsterdam. The research project has been set up as a so called Diamond Open Access project, which means that all discussions and publications involved in the research are published directly in Open Access (CC-by-SA) on the project website. All materials can be re-used by everyone under the same conditions (sharing alike and using the citation-form indicated in the articles).

The realization of the infrastructure of this type of research-communication has been funded up till now by the faculty, which will also pay for the maintenance of this structure. The further elaboration of the web-structure and the expenses of the building and maintenance of a research community will have to be realized with the help of fundraising.

Host of the project

DPSP is affiliated to the department of General Jurisprudence at the law faculty of the University of Amsterdam.

Infrastructure for the research of DPSP, as far as realized

A digital environment for the research had to be created as a startup of the research. In this context the following has been accomplished.
-a first draft has been made of a translation in English of Paul Scholten’s main text;
-a website has been constructed on which this draft can be viewed/printed side by side with a French translation which stems from 1954 and an Inodonesian translation which was published in 1986 or with the original Dutch text.
-on these translation pages comments can be posted for each of the 500 numbered paragraphs.
-the bibliography of all Paul Scholten’s works can be viewed on the website.
-the main theoretical works of Paul Scholten have been published in open access on the website. They can be viewed, downloaded and printed as image-files and as text-files.
-software has been implemented to make research contributions visible during the publication process. Articles will be immediately available as preprints (after a marginal check by the editor) in open access (CC-by-SA): at first as concepts awaiting editing, then as preprinted edition 1 with a citation title awaiting review and finally when the reviews are given and the author has replied as final publications. The review process is open and will be part of the publication of the final version of the text.
-the knowledge is being developed to give preprints and publications meta-data that create a high visibility on the internet.
-the first draft of the English translation has been published as a preprint. It can therefore be cited and discussed. Also the new editions of the original Dutch text and the French translation are published as citable preprints. In these new editions the text is divided in 500 numbered paragraphs in the same way as in the English translation. This means that in the discussions about the draft translation in English, comparisons can be made by referring to the French or Indonesian translation and the Dutch original.
-for the first few research contributions the review process has been finished. The publication of them can be viewed in Articles
-all documentation and codes for the construction of the website has been published in open access on the website. Read technical development
-the reference-manager Zotero has been worked out to function for data-collection on translation choices for juridical concepts, institutions and legislation, for the references to cases and legislation and for the functional description of institutions. This means that a comparative method is being developed, which can lead to a network of cooperation for the exchange of data on cultural legal heritage. Read more about the comparative method in the tutorials made for Zotero.

Research content of DPSP

Produce annotations
To finalize the translation in English many explanatory annotations have to be made. The existing French and Indonesian translations lack such annotations. The research project will produce these accompanying annotations in English. These can then be used for the different translations in other languages.
Main categories of research-questions
The research will be organized in six main categories (social economic background, theoretical relevance, dictionary, index of names, index of legislation and index of cases). The main categories each have several research questions. For theoretical relevance some research questions have already been formulated. In the near future many more research questions will be formulated. Articles can only be submitted for a certain research question. When people want to contribute an article, for which they do not find an appropriate research question they can send an email to the administrator, to ask for advice or to propose a research question.
Scientific content of research contributions
All articles will be reviewed by a process of open peer review and will by this be part of the scientific discussion.
All other materials on the site are either republications of old materials or will contain new materials and will then be open for comments and thus form part of the academic discussion.
Authors will sometimes be invited to make a contribution, but any person who has registered to the site can submit a contribution for a research question and everybody can propose a research question by writing an email to the administrator. Because there is such a big variation in the content needed for the research as well as in the scientific depth with which questions have to be answered, it is hoped that many different types of contributors will submit, different disciplines, practitioners and scientists, students and hobbyists. Those who want to reserve a certain question, before spending time on writing, can submit an abstract with the announcement when the full article can be expected.
Preservation of research data
The research is planned for five years. After these five years the complete translation with accompanying annotations and with references to the materials which have been submitted to the different research questions will be published.

Open Peer Review

After a short and marginal check by the administrator, all delivered comments and articles will be posted on the site as concepts.
Comments will be reviewed periodically, when it is time to moderate the discussion. Time will learn how to proceed on this issue.
Articles will be edited and published as citable edition 1 to be reviewed. Every article will be reviewed by two peers. The author will be asked to give the name of a reviewer (preferably from his/her own country when the article contains references to its legal culture). The editorial board will choose the second reviewer. After the reviews have been given, it is up to the author to decide to revise or not. This decision will be published as an answer to the reviewers. When the text is revised, it will be published as edition 2 and the reviewers will be asked to give a concluding comment. The whole process of review, reply, revision and concluding comment will be open. When the review process is finalized, the articles will be published as final publications. The history of the publication will stay available when the article is published and will form part of it. Contact with a publisher is established to create a form of publication which will be recognized as scientific publication. This is not an easy job and is still in discussion.

Review instructions for articles

Reviews will have 800 words as a maximum
All articles have been published already as citable preprints when they are sent for review. This means that the reviewer does not have to answer the question whether the article should be published.
The reviewer is asked to judge:
-the quality of the contribution i.e. if the submitted article conforms to the technical and scientific standards suited for the specific type of the contribution. Specific attention is asked here for the problem of language. The website aims at “global English”: a language which is fit for the mutual understanding between people from different linguistic backgrounds, without creating high costs for language edits.
-the relation between the article and the research question Does the article contribute to the research question? This not only asks for a judgment about the article, but also about the research question. The contributive value of the article could be that it becomes clear that the research question should be elaborated or changed altogether.
-recommendations for improvement of the article Here it should be kept in mind that the article has been published already. The recommended meliorations should contribute to the research: correction of mistakes and clarification of conceptual confusion and other ambivalences.
The author replies to the reviewers and motivates whether he/she wants to revise the preprint or publish it as it is. The publication of the text will include the reviews+author reply.
When the author decides to revise, the revised text (edition 2) will be sent to the reviewers for a concluding comment. The revised edition 2 will not only contain the open review history but  it will also be possible to consult edition 1. This means that quotations from edition 1 will not be lost.

Editorial notes

The editor will use submitted articles and comments for the production of explanatory texts, either directly or indirectly after adding and revising these texts with permission of the original authors, or making other texts while referring to the submitted materials. The editor will thus publish conclusions and decisions about the way the comments and articles contribute to the research and how they influence its further elaboration.

Long term availability

The research-project has a limited durability of 4 or 5 years. Authors can take care of the long term availability of their own materials, because the license CC-by-SA enables them to re-use their articles as they like.
The concern for long term availability pertains to the specific project-content, which gives all these articles a particular research-context and interest.  At this moment different options for this are still under consideration.


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