31 Flavors of Research Impact through #altmetrics

Via Scoop.itDual impact of research; towards the impactelligent university

There probably aren’t 31 clear flavours of research impact. How many are there? Maybe 5 or 7 or 12? We don’t know. But it would be a safe bet that, just like ice cream, our society needs them all. It depends whether we have a cone or a piece of apple pie. The goal isn’t to compare flavours: one flavour isn’t objectively better than another. They each have to be appreciated on their own merits for the needs they meet. To do this we have to be able to tell the flavours apart. Imagine that for ice cream all you had to go by was a sweetness metric. Not happening, right? So too, citations alone can’t fully inform what kind of difference a research paper has made on the world. Important, but not enough. We need more dimensions to distinguish the flavour clusters from each other. This is where #altmetrics comes in. By analyzing patterns in what people are reading, bookmarking, sharing, discussing, AND citing online we can figure out what kind – what flavour – of impact a research output is making. Unfortunately we can’t accurately derive the meaning of these activities by just thinking about them. What kind of impact *is* it if someone tweets about a paper a lot? Is it a titilating champagne giggle because the title was amusing, or a strawberry indication they were thrilled because someone just solved their method struggle? We need to do research to figure this out. Flavours are important for research outputs other than just papers, too. Some publicly available research datasets are used all the time in education but rarely research, others are used once or twice by really impactful projects, others across a field for calibration, etc. Understanding and recognizing these usage scenarios will be key in recognizing and rewarding the contributions of dataset creators.   source: Research Remix, Heather Piwowar
Via researchremix.wordpress.com

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About Wilfred Mijnhardt
RMIMR is my virtual playground, a place to reflect on issues from my professional context, my job as Policy Director at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM). RSM is the international university based business school at Erasmus University Rotterdam. More info here: www.rsm.nl Here is my list of relevant publications on the topic of my RMIMR weblog: http://www.mendeley.com/collections/694621/RMIMR-Repository/ The rss feed for my RMIMR collection is here: http://www.mendeley.com/collections/rss/694621/ Here is my other weblog on impact of research: http://www.scoop.it/t/dualimpact

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