What is LIBRE?

LIBRE is a free, multidisciplinary, online article repository that allows authors to “open” their research to the scientific community and invite expert colleagues to formally evaluate their articles. This “author-guided open peer review process” is absolutely transparent and can be implemented at any moment during an article’s lifetime:

  1. When the work is still in progress to receive expert opinions that will improve future versions
  2. During the journal’s internal peer review process (in agrement with journal editors), in order to collect more expert opinions that will help editors make a better-informed decision on whether the article merits publication or not
  3. After publication to help increase the article’s visibility and impact in the scientific community and the society in general

Based on reviewers’ assessments, citation indices, community ratings and usage statistics LIBRE calculates and freely provides multi-parametric performance indices that users can weight according to their specific criteria.

How it Works

When an author creates a LIBRE profile —a real name and affiliation are required for registration— the application recognises existing articles by this author and automatically adds them to his/her profile. The author can also add more articles that were not already present in the database and edit their metadata. Authors can then invite any expert colleague to read their article and submit an open peer review following a formal evaluation protocol. Authors can browse thematic areas to find available reviewers or can invite any colleague by email. Reviewers who accept the author’s invitation submit their reviews that receive a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) and become publicly available under a creative commons license. The rest of the community can then view, comment and rate reviews as fair or biased so that reviews considered as biased contribute less to the overall assessment of the article. At any moment, authors can upload an improved version of their article or decide to send it to an academic journal.

Furthermore, LIBRE allows authors to upload collections of important references under specific thematic areas that the rest of the community can complement by adding new references and by rating the relevance of existing ones. These collectively-assembled  “Open Bibliographies” provide a new way of organising research literature based on the wisdom of the community instead of some automated data mining algorithm depending on metadata attributions.

After a trial period of a prototype, due to lack of funding the LIBRE project is currently on hold.