SportRχiv (pronounced sport archive) is a community led initiative with the aim of solving a number of problems that are all too common within scientific publishing. Within our field, researchers would like to share their work with practitioners and practitioners would like to access it. At present, however, there is a rather large paywall shaped obstacle that often gets in the way of this process. The SportRχiv team have solved this problem by creating one central, open and accessible location (i.e.,SportRχiv Open) where future sport-related publications can be freely shared and accessed.

Beyond overcoming the obstacles associated with sharing research outside the academic community, SportRχiv Open (SO) provides researchers with the opportunity to (1) establish precedent – published pre-prints through SO will be allocated a DOI number and indexed by Google Scholar, (2) share their data and supplementary materials, (3) speed up the dissemination process, (4) make their work more discoverable, (5) future proof their research for the next generation, and (6) inform grant review and provide evidence of their outputs to support academic advancement.

In addition to providing an open pre-print service, we have also developed SportRχiv Community, a place where researchers can solicit feedback on research proposals, openly review pre-prints, find collaborators, and both receive and offer scholarly advice in general. Like SportRχiv Open, we hope that this service will offer a number of benefits. Most notably, we believe the service will further improve the standard of sport-related research, provide a supportive environment where researchers can seek advice, and network with one another within a spam-free platform.

Ultimately, we are proposing that sport-related researchers do things a little differently. If the combined services of SportRχiv Open and SportRχiv Community are supported as we hope, there is no reason why we cannot formalise the practices developed here to streamline the publishing process. After all, what we are proposing is essentially a way to receive peer support and review from an idea’s inception through to the submission of a pre-print within our archive. As this level of transparency and support is currently unheard of within sports-related research, we hope to both develop our own open access journal and partner with existing journals to support those who work collaboratively and openly to get their research into the public domain more quickly. We appreciate that what we are proposing may feel uncomfortable at first, but the current system is not working, and we hope that you will support us in trialling new approaches.
Thank you for your interest in SportRχiv and if you have any feedback, please leave a comment within the forum.