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Open Science Impact Pathways

The concept behind PathOS is to identify and document the Open Science Impact Pathways, i.e., the possible paths that connect the input to output, outcome and impact, including the causal mechanisms linking them and the existing enabling or blocking factors. Impact pathways respond to the need not only to estimate and measure net effects of a policy intervention, but to provide explanations why and how impacts occur. 

The graph is adopted from the RI-PATHS Guidebook for Socio-economic Impact Assessment of Research Infrastructures. Deliverable D5.4


PathOS enables a new understanding of Open Science impacts and their causal mechanisms. Synthesising and structuring current evidence, PathOS will develop new methods and tools for measuring impact following a 6-step iterative process, via pilot-testing from in-depth case studies.

  1. Scope: Start by assessing the current status in OS research and impact assessment methodology, to ensure we build on previous work.  
  2. Conceptualise model: Embark on a drafting exercise to draft the Open Science intervention logic and map conceptual OS impact pathways to help us formulate the right questions for measuring the impacts.  
  3. Quantify: Explore a range of metrics (data, methods, tools) to identify the effects of OS with a quali-quantitative approach to embed identification of causal effects. 
  4. Operationalise: Apply the methods for measuring impacts in specific case studies (use self-assessment toolkits, produce code and data for data driven approach), evaluate results and make proposals on feasibility aspects for future uptake. 
  5. Analyse: Do a cost benefit analysis targeting specific OS practices, capturing all key elements of the input-output-impact story. 
  6. Validate model: Do a synthesis of all results from activities 1-5 to derive OS impact pathways. 

Activities 2-5 will take place in a phased approach, and center around selected case studies, each bringing on the table a range of OS specific elements what will allow us to better evaluate and measure them and be able to construct the pathways from start-to-end.