Perceptions regarding academic social networks for scholarly communications | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose This study aims to investigate the perceptions of academics regarding the use and usefulness of academic social networks (ASNs) in the scholarly communication practices of faculty members in Kuwaiti Universities. Design/methodology/approach The study was conducted through a survey. In total, 100 faculty members from the disciplines of business administration, humanities and social sciences from three universities in Kuwait filled in an online questionnaire. The statistical feature of the Web-based tool was used for data analysis. Findings The results show that most faculty members are aware of the importance of ASNs. They perceive that these networks are useful, as more publications have become available, it has become easier for scholars to connect with colleagues who share similar research interests. Research limitations/implications The study is descriptive and restricted to a specific country (Kuwait). It also only covered faculty members from three academic disciplines. Furthermore, the use of a questionnaire, while appropriate for descriptive research, restricted us from conducting probing designed to gain deeper insights regarding participants’ motivations and explanations for not realizing the potential of these networks. Practical implications Future research should expand the scope of this study to cover faculty members from other disciplines (e.g. science, engineering and medicine), while also including more universities from other countries in the Arabian Gulf region. Future research should also examine how academics’ information-finding practices are changing as a result of the availability of information sources through ASNs. Originality/value No similar study has been conducted previously in Kuwait. This study provided useful information regarding the use and perceptions of ASNs in the context of faculty members of Kuwaiti universities. This information is of interest to scholars, information providers and those who design such networks.

Role of social networking services for scientists in promoting scientific output on example of Polish representatives of social communication and media sciences | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose

This paper aims to answer the question of how the Polish representatives of social communication and media sciences communicate the most recent scientific findings in the media space, i.e. what types of publications are shared, what activities do they exemplify (sharing information about their own publications, leading discussions, formulating opinions), what is the form of the scientific communication created by them (publication of reference lists’ descriptions, full papers, preprints and post prints) and what is the audience reception (number of downloads, displays, comments).

Design/methodology/approach

The authors present the results of analysis conducted on the presence of the most recent (2017–2019) publications by the Polish representatives of the widely understood social communication and media sciences in three selected social networking services for scientists: ResearchGate, Google Scholar and Academia.edu. The analyses covered 100 selected representatives of the scientific environment (selected in interval sampling), assigned, according to the OECD classification “Field of Science”, in the “Ludzie nauki” (Men of Science) database to the “media and communication” discipline.

Findings

The conducted analyses prove a low usage level of the potential of three analysed services for scientists by the Polish representatives of social communication and media sciences. Although 60% of them feature profiles in at least one of the services, the rest are not present there at all. From the total of 113 identified scientists’ profiles, as little as 65 feature publications from 2017 to 2019. Small number of alternative metrics established in them, implies, in turn, that if these metrics were to play an important role in evaluation of the value and influence of scientific publications, then this evaluation for the researched Polish representatives of social communication and media sciences would be unfavourable.

Originality/value

The small presence of the Polish representatives of the communication and media sciences in three analysed services shows that these services may be – for the time being – only support the processes of managing own scientific output. Maybe this quite a pessimistic image of scientists’ activities in the analysed services is conditioned by a simple lack of the need to be present in electronic channels of scientific communication or the lack of trust to the analysed services, which, in turn, should be linked to their shortcomings and flaws. However, unequivocal confirmation of these hypotheses might be brought by explorations covering a larger group of scientists, and complemented with survey studies. Thus, this research may constitute merely a starting point for further explorations, including elaboration of good practices with respect to usage of social media by scientists.

Wiley Reaches Detente with Academic Social Network ResearchGate | Copyright and Technology

“Academic and scientific researchers have their own social networks. One of the biggest differences between these services and LinkedIn or Twitter is that researchers are interested in other researchers’ content as much as they are in social interactions. This has led academic social networks to find ways of getting users to post their papers and journal articles to the networks, in order to increase membership and traffic. The problem with this, of course, is that in many cases the researchers don’t own the copyrights–publishers do–and they don’t have permission to upload that content….

ResearchGate’s copyright hostilities with STM publishers began in 2017, when the publishers’ global trade association, the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers (also known, confusingly, as STM), sent it a letter threatening to sue. At the same time, five publishers formed an organization called the Coalition for Responsible Sharing (CfRS) with the sole purpose of addressing copyright issues on ResearchGate….

 Wiley’s statement about the agreement is vague on details. But reading between the lines, it suggests that Wiley’s agreement goes somewhat beyond ResearchGate’s 2018 agreement with Springer Nature et al: ResearchGate has agreed to send its users detailed messages about the permissibility (or lack thereof) of content sharing, and to process Wiley’s takedown notices more aggressively and/or efficiently; while in return, ResearchGate will share some of its trove of content access data with Wiley and work to improve discoverability of content on the site. But the agreement does not call for ResearchGate to implement content recognition-based copyright filtering or facilitate incremental licensing revenue from authors….”

The Role and Utilization of International Academic Social Networks in Digital Publishing

Abstract : This paper focuses on the issue of academic social networks as means of changing the open access reality. Nowadays a free, direct and permanent access to digital scientific content is necessary for every student and researcher. The need for human communication has made social networks popular to the public, resulting in their rapid development, for example, ResearchGate and Academia.edu. The study is motivated by one main research question: What is their role and utilization in digital publishing? Through observational research and secondary quantitative and qualitative data analysis, the key objectives of the study are to highlight the role of international academic social networks in digital publishing and present the benefits and limitations of existing networks. In conclusion, the active use of academic social networks enables researchers to expand their knowledge but on the other hand limitations on digital publishing arise regarding to copyrights and licensing barriers.

 

The Role and Utilization of International Academic Social Networks in Digital Publishing

Abstract : This paper focuses on the issue of academic social networks as means of changing the open access reality. Nowadays a free, direct and permanent access to digital scientific content is necessary for every student and researcher. The need for human communication has made social networks popular to the public, resulting in their rapid development, for example, ResearchGate and Academia.edu. The study is motivated by one main research question: What is their role and utilization in digital publishing? Through observational research and secondary quantitative and qualitative data analysis, the key objectives of the study are to highlight the role of international academic social networks in digital publishing and present the benefits and limitations of existing networks. In conclusion, the active use of academic social networks enables researchers to expand their knowledge but on the other hand limitations on digital publishing arise regarding to copyrights and licensing barriers.

 

Whose Research is it Anyway? Academic Social Networks Versus Institutional Repositories

Abstract:  INTRODUCTION Looking for ways to increase deposits into their institutional repository (IR), researchers at one institution started to mine academic social networks (ASNs) (namely, ResearchGate and Academia.edu) to discover which researchers might already be predisposed to providing open access to their work. METHODS Researchers compared the numbers of institutionally affiliated faculty members appearing in the ASNs to those appearing in their institutional repositories. They also looked at how these numbers compared to overall faculty numbers. RESULTS Faculty were much more likely to have deposited their work in an ASN than in the IR. However, the number of researchers who deposited in both the IR and at least one ASN exceeded that of those who deposited their research solely in an ASN. Unexpected findings occurred as well, such as numerous false or unverified accounts claiming affiliation with the institution. ResearchGate was found to be the favored ASN at this particular institution. DISCUSSION The results of this study confirm earlier studies’ findings indicating that those researchers who are willing to make their research open access are more disposed to do so over multiple channels, showing that those who already self-archive elsewhere are prime targets for inclusion in the IR. CONCLUSION Rather than seeing ASNs as a threat to IRs, they may be seen as a potential site of identifying likely contributors to the IR.

Whose Research is it Anyway? Academic Social Networks Versus Institutional Repositories

Abstract:  INTRODUCTION Looking for ways to increase deposits into their institutional repository (IR), researchers at one institution started to mine academic social networks (ASNs) (namely, ResearchGate and Academia.edu) to discover which researchers might already be predisposed to providing open access to their work. METHODS Researchers compared the numbers of institutionally affiliated faculty members appearing in the ASNs to those appearing in their institutional repositories. They also looked at how these numbers compared to overall faculty numbers. RESULTS Faculty were much more likely to have deposited their work in an ASN than in the IR. However, the number of researchers who deposited in both the IR and at least one ASN exceeded that of those who deposited their research solely in an ASN. Unexpected findings occurred as well, such as numerous false or unverified accounts claiming affiliation with the institution. ResearchGate was found to be the favored ASN at this particular institution. DISCUSSION The results of this study confirm earlier studies’ findings indicating that those researchers who are willing to make their research open access are more disposed to do so over multiple channels, showing that those who already self-archive elsewhere are prime targets for inclusion in the IR. CONCLUSION Rather than seeing ASNs as a threat to IRs, they may be seen as a potential site of identifying likely contributors to the IR.

How to Build an Open Science Network in Your Community

“If you’re familiar with the open science movement, you may have also experienced the reality that the implementation of open practices hasn’t been driven by a wide-scale adoption at the institutional or organizational level. But rather, the opposite—through grassroots campaigns led by individual, early adopters….

Fortunately, there are many grassroots networks worldwide that have navigated these obstacles and have the wisdom to share. For the benefit of those seeking to grow open science networks, we tapped into this wisdom through a conversation with leaders in community-led open science initiatives.

 
This conversation – conducted via a webinar called “Local Grassroots Networks Engaging Open Science in Their Communities” – highlights the formation and sustainability efforts of several grassroots networks successfully fostering culture change in their local research communities.

 
The webinar features insights from COS Executive Director Brian Nosek, Anita Eerland of the Open Science Community Utrecht, Marcus Munafò and Laura Fortunato of the UK Reproducibility Network, and Aleksandar Bogdanoski of the Berkeley Initiative for Transparency in the Social Sciences who collectively offer their experiences regarding:
 

How to gain the support of stakeholders through inclusivity and how to empower key actors to push for change
How to create capacity for training, education opportunities, and content libraries
How and where to seek funding and partnerships for initiatives
How to understand the regional obstacles that stand in the way of good science in your community and generate evidence to overcome these obstacles….”

A journal club to fix science

“We need all those who care about better research to stay invested, and this will not happen by telling the next generation of scientists to just sit back and hope. Early-career researchers do not need to wait passively for coveted improvements. We can create communities and push for bottom-up change.

ReproducibiliTea is one way to do this. Sam Parsons, Sophia Crüwell and I (all trainees) started this grass-roots journal club in early 2018, at the experimental-psychology department at the University of Oxford, UK. We hoped to promote a stronger open-science community and more prominent conversations about reproducibility. The initiative soon spread, and is now active at more than 27 universities in 8 countries….”