COS receives $18M from Flu Lab to improve biomedical research culture

Sep. 8, 2021

Charlottesville, VA – The Center for Open Science (COS) has received a five-year award totaling $18 million from Flu Lab to accelerate COS's mission to increase openness, integrity, and reproducibility of research. The focus of the investment will be to extend COS's services to catalyze culture change in biomedical research. This grant builds on an active partnership between Flu Lab and COS centered on improving rigor and transparency in influenza research. 

COS builds and maintains open source infrastructure for all disciplines of research, called the Open Science Framework (OSF), that enables the adoption of open practices across the research lifecycle. OSF flexibly integrates with other tools and services to make it simpler for researchers to plan, conduct, report on, and discover research within their current workflows. COS collaborates with grassroots organizations that support training and changing communities' norms toward openness and integrity and provides solutions that empower communities to customize and promote open practices from within. COS works with funders, publishers, societies, and universities to shift incentives and policies to foster culture change toward rigor and transparency. Finally, COS investigates the state of research practices and evaluates the effectiveness of culture change initiatives. These interdependent activities incorporate a theory of change to create sustainable improvements to science as a social system. 

"We are grateful to Flu Lab for their commitment to our mission. Their support will accelerate the application of our theory of change in biomedical research," remarked COS Executive Director Brian Nosek. "Flu Lab's funding will enable us to advance culture change with our biomedical community partners and collaborators and cultivate new relationships. The award will also increase the impact of other philanthropic and grant support by helping us improve the value proposition of our services for long-term sustainability."

Tim Errington, a Molecular and Cell Biologist and Director of Research at COS, added, "Having just completed an eight-year effort to replicate high impact findings in cancer biology, this award is perfectly timed to engage the research community on the meaning and implications of the project's conclusions and opportunities for improvement." The final reports of that project, called the Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology, are expected to be published later in 2021. 

COS's vision for open scholarship is designed to accelerate the discovery of knowledge, solutions, and cures. Some of the greatest strengths of the reform movement in research are the high degree of collaboration and information sharing across disciplines and the emergence of a metascience research community that continuously evaluates reform efforts' success. Alison Mudditt, CEO of the Public Library of Science and Chair of COS's Board of Directors, noted, "COS's success is contingent on the combination of an active, energized community of collaborators, and a commitment to evaluating its effectiveness and adapting its approach in response to new evidence." 

This month, COS will co-host the Metascience 2021 conference with the Research on Research Institute, the Association for Interdisciplinary Meta-Research and Open Science, and almost 50 funding, society, institutional, and advocacy partner organizations. The conference will showcase progress in research reform and chart priorities for the coming years. 


About COS

Founded in 2013, COS is a nonprofit technology and culture change organization with a mission to increase openness, integrity, and reproducibility of scientific research. COS pursues this mission by building communities around open science practices, supporting metascience research, and developing and maintaining free, open source software tools, including the Open Science Framework (OSF). Learn more at

Contact: Lisa Cuevas Shaw


Phone: (434) 207-2971

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