Biophysicist, PhD. Designer of SJS.
I spent most of my years of research at the Institut de Physique Théorique - CEA Saclay, and I am specialist of all problems related to RNA secondary structure prediction (especially pseudo-knots and RNA binding proteins prediction).
As a science enthusiast, I have been very concerned with quality issues since the beginning of my career. Although the strength and reliability of science comes from its collective practice (which drives everyone to rise above their respective prejudice), the current publishing system seemed to divide people by turning them into competitors for the same slots in « reputable » journals. As a consequence, the scientific output is often self-righteous and impossible to verify or reproduce, so that it completely misses its point. After some years, I realized that the root of the problem was in fact the use of journal rank as a proxy for scientific quality, which not only is irrelevant but also creates an adversarial economy of knowledge which is so detrimental to quality. There are also collateral damage such as lack of Open Access, exorbitant costs and chaotic dissemination of papers that make active topics so hard to follow.
When I actually got the idea of a much better way to assess research, and one which is openly handled by the scientific community, I felt it was a moral duty to implement it and many more ideas came up in the process. SJS is the result of this. I am still bad at explaining clearly what it is, but you’ll know everything if you take time to read my two first articles of my account, or read this more informal interview : http://www.richardpoynder.co.uk/Michael_Bon_Interview.pdf