Thursday, October 15, 2020

India’s first Preprints Repository to improve research quality in the country

India’s first Preprints Repository to improve research quality in the country

Researchers in any field, accessing research publications face two main problems. One, it takes around one year in the whole process of submitting, reviewing, accepting, and publishing research work in an online journal to be accessible. Another one is most of the papers remain behind the paywall as they are published in journals that are accessible only after having a subscription. So, many researchers in different countries, and of different universities and colleges who don't have subscriptions to these journals are unaware of the research findings in their fields. The need to make the current research results, immediately and freely accessible to the research community for building the ground for further research, has given rise to Preprints servers. A growing number of disciplines are building online repositories of preprints that are openly accessible to all readers. India also launched its preprints service in 2017 in agricultural sciences and now launched the country's first community Preprints service IndiaRxiv.

IndiaRxiv (pronounced India Archive)

It is a preprints repository for Indian researchers to share preprints of their research work with the research community.

According to Sridhar Gutam, Convenor, Open Access India and Senior Scientist, Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Bengaluru. “Let’s give freedom to our scholarly literature and make it available freely to the world.”1

 With the launch of IndiaRxiv on 15 August 2019, India joined the Global open access movement. It is an initiative of Open Open Access India in collaboration with the Centre for Open Science (COS). It is a single open platform providing free access to all publicly funded research outputs and a platform for Indian research scholars to share research outputs to the public as soon as possible. It will also allow the researchers to get public reviews and feedback on their research work and allow other researchers immediately to build upon the existing research results.

IndiaRxiv preprint service is built on COS’s preprints platform OSF Preprints, an easy, robust, and stable platform to launch preprints service.

According to Partha Pratim Das, Joint Principal Investigator, National Digital Library of India Project and Professor, Department of Computer Science & Engineering, IIT Kharagpur “I am really happy to see the dream of IndiaRxiv – the ‘freedom’ statement of free India – come true. India gained her political freedom over seven decades back; she now aspires to earn her academic freedom through IndiaRxiv, a noble initiative in matured open access research and learning. IndiaRxiv will be fully indexed in National Digital Library of India to reach every corner of the world within a single click.”2

agriRxiv(pronounced ‘agri-archive’) 

It is a free, open access repository of preprints (unpublished) in Agricultural sciences. Open Access India has previously launched agriXiv in 2017 and again it is relaunched with a slight change in the name agriRxiv through CABI in collaboration with Open Access India.

CABI is an international, inter-governmental, not-for-profit organization to solve problems in agriculture and the environment by applying its scientific expertise and uplifting the lives of people involved in these fields across the world.

In agriRxiv, the author can submit preprint versions (not peer-reviewed nor published) of their research work which requires no submission fees. Authors retain copyright and choose the option under which to make the article available (CC BY, CC0)

What is Preprint?

A preprint is a full draft version of a scholarly article or research paper before it is peer-reviewed and published in a journal. It can be shared by the author before and after a paper is published in the journal.

 The Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) defines a preprint as: " a scholarly manuscript posted by the author(s) in an openly accessible platform, usually before or in parallel with the peer review process."

According to one article by Jennifer Lin 2018(May) studying the Preprint growth rate in comparison to journal articles. “Preprints are one of the fastest-growing types of content. While preprints may not be new, the growth may well be: ~30% for the past 2 years (compared to article growth of 2-3% for the same period)."4  


  • No paywalls between users and research results.
  • Preprint servers permit the rapid dissemination of new research output.
  • It allows the researchers to immediately get access to research results and build upon it, the foundation of new research.
  • Authors get over the frustration of waiting to be published in subscribed journals which are a year-long process.
  • Supports the researchers all over the world who are unable to get access to journals behind paywalls.
  • Contribute to the improvement of the research output of any country.
  • Researchers are aware of the current state-of-the-art of any field due to widely openly accessible research results.
  • Timely access to varied research outputs avoids the duplication of research work and better research.
  • Preprint servers are a great way for researchers to share and receive feedback on scholarly works and improve their manuscripts.

Some popular Preprint servers:

arXiv: It archives articles in the fields of physics, mathematics, computer science, quantitative biology, quantitative finance, statistics, electrical engineering and systems science, and economics which are openly accessible. It is a community-supported resource maintained by the private not-for-profit institution, Cornell University.

bioRxiv: It is a preprint server for biology (Lifesciences) which provides free access to archived preprints and it is operated by not-for-profit research and educational institution, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

chemRxiv: It is a preprint server for chemistry and related areas and freely distribute the unpublished preprints. It is collaboratively managed by the five world's largest chemical societies the American Chemical Society (ACS), Chinese Chemical Society, Chemical Society of Japan, German Chemical Society (GDCh), and the Royal Society of Chemistry.

EarthRxiv: A free preprint service for earth sciences to serve the geoscience community. The EarthRxiv is supported by Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP), a nonprofit, Volunteer, and community-driven organization and Centre for Open Science.

EngrXiv: It is a preprint server for engineering. It is a partner of the nonprofit Centre for Open Science and is housed at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

SocArXiv: It is a nonprofit open archive service for social sciences. SocArXiv is housed at the University of Maryland and its technology partner is the Centre for Open Science.

medRxiv: It is a free online archive for preprint publishing and distributing in medical, clinical, and related health sciences. The server is owned and operated by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL).

No doubt the preprints are growing at a faster rate and getting popularity and acceptance day by day. but here are some concerns about the preprint submission before peer review about the research results to be disclosed earlier before publication which can be manipulated and published in the journal earlier than preprint article. Preprints are shared publicly on open access platforms so they are discussed widely and openly on any issue raised by the community at any time. Also, your work will be publicly available before it has the benefit of peer-review, which may improve it.

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