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Scientific Communication—A Vision for Tomorrow

Library and Information Management, Stettemerstrasse 165, CH-8207 Schaffhausen, Switzerland
Publications 2018, 6(4), 49;
Received: 29 November 2018 / Accepted: 4 December 2018 / Published: 14 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Scholarly Communication—A Vision for Tomorrow)
“Publishing is not evolving. Publishing is going away… That’s a button. There’s a button that says “publish”, and when you press it, it’s done”.
Shirky, Clay [1]
Scholarly communication has a long tradition. The need to disseminate new and outstanding findings goes back to 1665, when Henry Oldenburg articulated his ideas, which served as a basis for the modern journal: «to see in these early Phil Trans the rudiments of many of those features we associate with the modern journal» (Singleton, 2014). Oldenburg planned to integrate Letters to the Editor, News and Views, Book Reviews, and Errata, to mention only a few highlights [2].
More than 350 years have passed and the publishing landscape has faced a great many challenges. New inventions like the Internet continue to lead to ground-breaking possibilities concerning the reading and writing process.
Alternative text forms and communication styles are evolving. Writing and “designing” a text may become an experiment: “The fragmentation of what might have been a single huge document allows the author to experiment with a wider variety of links than the sequential «A happened then B happened and then C»” [3]. How can authors, publishers, librarians and all the other stakeholders influence and be part of this experiment in a way that will best shape the future of the sustainable publishing process?
In this small issue dedicated to visionary scientific communication, we focus on up and coming technologies. We shed light on alternative forms of the scientific article and the, perhaps, radical changes in scholarly communication. Will the scientific paper transform from fluid, living revues to single observations? While Hartgerink and van Zelst describe a modular scenario, Rajendran imagines “scientific hubs” as a future model for communicating research.
Emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence and blockchain are influencing and transforming the entirety of the scientific lifecycle. Innovative ideas are needed to find ways for creating a dynamic and flourishing scientific ecosystem.


This research received no external funding.

Conflicts of Interest

The author declares no conflict of interest.


  1. Shirky, C. How We Will Read. 2012. Available online: (accessed on 4 August 2018).
  2. Singleton, A. The first scientific journal. Learn. Publ. 2014, 27, 2–4. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version]
  3. St. Laurent, S. Why Hypertext for History? 1992. Available online: (accessed on 4 August 2018).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Weilenmann, A.-K. Scientific Communication—A Vision for Tomorrow. Publications 2018, 6, 49.

AMA Style

Weilenmann A-K. Scientific Communication—A Vision for Tomorrow. Publications. 2018; 6(4):49.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Weilenmann, Anne-Katharina. 2018. "Scientific Communication—A Vision for Tomorrow" Publications 6, no. 4: 49.

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