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The Social Side of Research
William Gunn, Ph.D. Head of Academic Outreach Mendeley @mrgunn
Three perspectives on scholarly communication
•Early career researchers
Opportunities for discovery
Opportunities for building relationships
A historical perspective
•I grew up with the internet
•Chatting over ICQ and Usenet with people anywhere
•Reaching beyond my local environment
Change and Disruption
•The music industry was first
•worst fears not confirmed
•providing a project very many people want is in fact quite sustainable
•IF you don’t try to control how they use it.
More Change and Disruption
•Blogging changed how we communicated
–but not as drastically as some predicted
•business models shifted
•A service that gives people what they want is a quite sustainable business model
•IF you don’t try to control the channel through which they receive it.
Watching the ship sail away
After all this, scholarly publishers were still debating:
–Should we put our work online?
–Should we allow search engines to index us?
–Should we use DRM on PDFs?
–Should we dictate both how content is used and the channel through which they receive it?
•We never went into the library
•We did use library services all the time
•I initially blamed the library for my frustrations with scholarly communication
•How wrong I was!
–big deals, monopolies, hands tied
•Library technology is empowered by Open Access
From consumer to provider
•Mendeley was neither from libraries nor from publishers.
•Bringing tools and user experience from other parts of the web to scholarly communication.
•People expected to easily share and discover music and photos, why not academic papers?
Building an open infrastructure
•Web native tools expect that data has no strings attached.
•Mendeley had to create an open sharing platform to deliver the experience we wanted.
•A free desktop manager got us on desktops around the world.
Instrumenting the Research Workflow
Read Annotate Organize
Instrumenting the research workflow
•2.6 Million users
•470 M documents
•4-700K uploads per day
•90% coverage of Pubmed
•Accessible alternative to citations
New forms of discovery
–personalized recommendations based on reading history
–relatedness based on document similarity
–implement recommendations as a service
•third-party recommender services
–serve niche audiences
What would people build if they could get the data?
•Impact Story – get credit for all your work
•PLOS ALM – article-level metrics for papers
•Plum Analytics – bespoke analytics for libraries
•Altmetric.com – altmetrics for publishers. (from Digital Science/NPG)
Becoming embedded in the research workflow