Use ORCID to tie your profiles & outputs together in one place

I’m a fan of ORCID: their ID number is like an ISSN for researchers, to tie all your outputs & publications to your own name. It’s a very necessary initiative and they’re working with all the right people, so far as I can see.

I created an ORCID for myself, more than a year ago. My ORCID is completely unimpressive since I’m not a researcher, but how can I tell researchers about it without checking it out myself?!

During my big move, leaving the University of Warwick to live in Berlin and work freelance, I forgot to update ORCID with my personal e-mail address (I was bound to forget something!). Lately, I tried to update my ORCID and found that because I’d forgotten the password and no longer had access to the e-mail address I’d given them, I had to contact them directly. All so avoidable, if only I’d given them my other e-mail address in the first place! However, the staff were friendly and helpful, and now I’ve got access again.

ORCID has moved on a lot since I last looked… there are more options for content that you can add to your ORCID profile and I note that there are hundreds of suggestions for improvements from researchers who’ve used it! I know from my days as repository manager at Warwick, that people will always have ideas for what your tool could/should do, but the key is to focus on your core mission.

ORCID provides me with a profile, yes, but that’s not why I value it: I use LinkedIn for that, and others probably already use (or have to use!) their University profile webpage(s) or other websites. As I see it, the key mission for ORCID is to have the number to which other profiles & publications can be tied.

It’s so easy to add links to your website(s) on ORCID, and that’s what I recommend researchers to do, rather than using ORCID as a profile webpage (yet). The really important thing is to have the ORCID number, so that you can supply it to publishers when you publish in the future.

It is my view that ORCID is not the best academic profile site, in terms of displaying your work. It does offer you the ability to import your works from ResearcherID and SCOPUS, from PubMed and DataCite and various other sources, and that list is likely to grow (handy!). But I didn’t find it easy to manually add a work , and it seems as though, once a work has been added, you can’t edit it, and from what I can tell from comments of others, it’s not easy to de-duplicate from those import sources. Having said that, the manual adding form was simpler and easier than on some institutional repositories!

In my view it’s not an easy place to manage and maintain an online profile – yet! I daresay that will improve, so it’s a space to watch. In the meantime, it’s so easy to claim an ID and link to your profile elsewhere, that there is no reason not to do it!

 

 

Advertisements

So many online content platforms: where should you put research outputs?

You can deposit your work in LOADS of places*, but how do you choose where to bother depositing? Here’s what I’d look for when considering depositing my work somewhere online:

1- “linkedness“, ie they link to or feed into other tools you like or initiatives you are expected to take part in. Eg you can get altmetric.com data for your article from your institutional repository, ImpactStory data from Figshare and PLoS data from your publisher, or you can get an automatic tweet out of it, or your information will be used for your University’s website & performance reviews…

2- “long term”, ie there will be investment to retain the service for a while, preferably retaining the features that you value. Your work would thus be preserved, and your effort of depositing would have lasting benefits.

3- presentation: they should make you/your research look good!

4- discoverability: they should make your work discoverable, preferably in different ways to what your publisher might already do for your work. eg repository cross search tools like BASE, eg feeding webpages on Uni site.

5-attention-bringing: they might also include an element of “publicising” of your research too, eg they tweet the headings of all content added. They might also raise your reputation by association, eg they present your work alongside the top researchers in your field. To my mind, this is also a reason to look out for subject specialist sites/collections.

6- accessiblity: if they improve upon the accessibility to your work that your publisher gives, then this is also a reason to deposit. (eg repository versions that are open access)

What else could be added to this list? What examples are there of things that matter to you/your research community?

*Figshare, your institutional repository, subject repositories, Mendeley, Researchgate, your own webpage to name a few…

Research Trends article “Predicting citation counts” investigates what we have learnt in the last decade

@researchtrendy, or Research Trends, have published an article discussing some significant papers in this field. My own take on what it presents, boiling it all down to one piece of advice is:

The most important thing is who you are publishing with: they might bring you citation ‘pull’, they can raise your quality of your article, and they might have a good idea of the right venues to approach.

My favourite quotations & notes on significant parts are presented here, in a summary that I believe is accessible to practitioner librarians.

“citation counts will remain first among equals because of their intimate connection with the text of the article” 

“features around the Author and Venue were the most predictive. If we set the power of the Author features to 1.0, the relative power of the Venue and Content features would be about .63 and .25, respectively.” Content features include things like original vs review article, industry funding, structured abstract, word count of abstract, etc: see the article for a full list.

TOPIC

“large studies funded by industry, and with industry-favoring results, were statistically significant predictors of higher rates of citation in the future.” Note that this was in the “medical therapeutic space”, where new treatments are likely to become more widely available & investigated after such studies are published.

cardiovascular and oncology articles were more likely to be cited than those on other topics such as anesthesiology, dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, etc.” The topic is significant, i.e. one where there are lots of patients & lots of interest will be a topic with higher citation rates.

“articles which provided therapeutic information were more cited, as were those which provided original research as opposed to review articles.” The latter part surprised me, as the received wisdom has always been that review articles are more highly cited, but the only evidence for this that I’ve come across has been that review journals seem to have the highest impact factors. Not that I’ve done proper research, and I’m quite sure that there are disciplinary differences.

“also found that longer articles were cited fewer times, in a weak but statistically significant way.” Strange, as you would have thought that an article with more research in it would present more that is worthy of citation. I want to know if the longer articles were full of more research, or just long-winded! (No doubt I should go to the original article… one day.) Another article discussed “…found a weak effect that the more topics an article covered the higher the number of citations it received.” Logical!

AUTHOR

“…looked at whether the author byline indicated group authorship. This was found to be the most significant prediction feature in their study!” Yes, I’ve often seen claims that co-authorship leads to higher citation. Makes sense, because all of those authors might self-cite and promote the article appropriately, but also their combined inputs will make the work richer and their collaboration will have polished the work to a higher standard, in theory.

“being a very highly cited author is predictive of future citation counts.” So co-authoring with a highly cited author is not a bad move: not only will you learn from an experienced co-author and gain reputation by association, but you’ll also benefit from his/her citation ‘pull’. Exactly the tactic you can play with Twitter & Klout, if you’re involved in marketing by social media…

VENUE

“If we know the journal the article will be published in, we can make more confident predictions about its eventual citation count” This effect must be when dealing with large numbers because we all know the apocryphal tales of journals with high impact factors because of one or two star articles which are hauling in the citations. It reminds me of those scores that tell you that your chosen method of contraception is 97% effective: it doesn’t mean anything if you’re one of the individuals in the 3%! You take your chances, and journal impact factors do matter.

When looking for other measures of a journal, the “strongest are the number of databases that index the journal, and the proportion of articles from the journal which are abstracted within two months by Abstracting and Indexing services and synoptic journals.” I’ve long advocated to researchers that publishing in journals that are indexed in the sources where they search for research is a good idea. (NB I had to think about “synoptic”, and it means that it’s a journal publishing synopses, or summaries!)

The author discusses how there is room for more research into the topic of the “Venue”, including when it comes to altmetrics. I believe that experienced authors must have their own informal lists of journals to approach, ranked by their own perception of the quality of the journal, even when they do not have explicit lists: it is often very subjective, and difficult to measure, but I wonder if they can articulate how they assess the quality of a journal?

The studies discussed in the article have looked at a variety of interesting features. To this list, I might add: OA journal, hybrid OA, or no OA at all; rejection rate; time to rejection/acceptance; time to publication from acceptance; professional journal editor/academic editor (or some other feature(s) of the editorial make-up); does the journal tweet, y/n?. I imagine it would be very difficult if not impossible to gather accurate data on all such features, but they are things that I would advise authors to investigate. 

ARTICLE

“For a single article, the number of times it is abstracted is also a statistically significant predictor”

“secondary publication sources have a predictive effect”

There is a great deal of potential for altmetrics, when it comes to researching individual, newly published articles.

“By the time an article is a few months old, we can make good predictions of its likelihood of future citations – especially for those articles which end up being highly cited.”

“…. only about 20% of the papers which ended up being highly cited were not predicted to be that way.” If you compare that to my analogy with contraceptives earlier, this percentage seems rather unimpressive, but then how sure do you need to be, in this circumstance? Well, that depends on how you want to use the data. The author points out “these measures are not well-suited for an editorial board to choose articles, since the Venue would be constant and they could not look at the author’s publication rank.” (because the authorship would not be revealed.)

Note that the prediction rate claimed is only for articles within the data-set being analysed, and that the author of this article says “it is not safe to predict the accuracy any new study might achieve”. but also that the trends seem clear

It is those trends that I would point out to researchers who are choosing how & where to publish.