2:AM Altmetrics in the library

11:20 – 12:35: Altmetrics in the library
Chair: Martijn Roelandse, Manager Publishing Innovation at Springer Science+Business Media

Stacy Konkiel (Altmetric.com) & Sarah Sutton (Emporia State University)

Using altmetrics for collection development and other duties in US academic libraries

As the awareness of altmetrics continues to grow among librarians, some have posited that altmetrics may be useful for library collection development and other day-to-day tasks. In this talk, the presenters will share the preliminary results from a survey of academic librarians in the United States on their practical uses of altmetrics data. We’ll also discuss awareness of altmetrics in general among collection development librarians as compared to other groups of librarians, and the implications of our results for both libraries and the field of altmetrics in general. With this session, we aim to foster a frank discussion among attendees–including bibliometricians, altmetrics app developers, and many non-US librarians–about the realities of altmetrics uptake in academic libraries in the the United States, and how our assumptions can differ from reality.

Kristi Holmes, NWU Understanding impact through alternative metrics: developing library-based assessment services

There’s never been a more critical need to better understand the impact of research efforts. The challenging state of funding models (1) and an enhanced pressure on young investigators to stand out from the crowd magnify this need as well as the perceived value of locally based impact services. These services are leveraged by a diverse range of stakeholders, from individuals to university-level decision makers and strategists. Individuals often wish to better demonstrate impact of published works to promotion committees or describe the impact of research studies to funding agencies when applying for funding or complying with institution-level or federal reporting exercises. Research groups, departments, and institutions often wish to discover how research findings are being used to promote science and gain a better overall view of research publications and outputs.

Libraries are particularly well poised to meet the need to understand a more nuanced view of impact. Libraries are trusted, neutral parties with a tradition of service and support and often act as technology hubs on campus with IT and data expertise. Librarians are trained information professionals with information and searching skills and a keen understanding of the research, education, clinical landscape of their institution. This presentation will discuss general trends in the field, including an overview of resources, assessment frameworks and tools; strategies for partnering with stakeholders; and examples of library based service models, from basic services to highly integrated library-based core research units.

(1) http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.aac5200

Wouter Gerritsma, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Altmetric opportunities for libraries

Just over five years ago the concept of altmetrics was minted. For libraries and librarians this has brought a new plethora of opportunities. In the first place there is the traditional extension role. Outreach opportunities on the subject of altmetrics are manyfold, and librarians could seize the opportunity to become the general information source on altmetrics within their institution. The second area of involvement is the collection and aggregation of altmetric indicators, from single publication to collections of papers on subjects or scientists, departments, faculties or the university as whole. It goes without saying that collecting the indicators is coupled to interpretation and explanation as well. The third component of the altmetric opportunities for libraries are what I call the groundwork. Preparation of the institution’s output in such a way that altmetric indicators are easily collected.

This means that we should assist researches wherever possible with obtaining their ORCiD and making sure that all output in electronic form has persistent identifiers, this is especially true for the grey literature of the university. Think of all the e-theses, working documents, report series and data sets. Collaboration with printing offices et cetera to organize the issue of DOI’s are therefore essential. Having permanent identifiers for these publication will improve their dissemination, increase the citability of those publications, and make it more easy to demonstrate their impact. We should avoid the trap of collecting altmetric indicators of only peer reviewed journal articles since they come easy to use. The ultimate challenge for libraries is to collect altmetric indicators for all output of the university, as managers of the institutional bibliography, libraries are well places to play a pivotal role in the altmetric landscape.

Alenka Princic, TU Delft Library, Netherlands

Alternative metrics at Dutch university libraries

The role of a librarian at many universities and research institutions has changed and is still changing. For most libraries a common thread is the knowledge flow and technological innovations in order to support the researchers in augmenting their academic output, academic visibility and impact. A challenge for the Library however, is how to contribute to the increased visibility of the researchers beyond the obvious publication strategy and how to make it measurable. Alternative metrics makes part of these endeavours. When it comes to altmetrics an obvious role of a library is analysis of the market, comparison of the different tools and advice to the end users; to a lesser extent the implementation of altmetrics at an institutional level. Similarly as several Dutch libraries, the TU Delft Library is currently conducting a comparative analysis of the major tools on the market. The Delft library, however, will make a step further by experimenting with the use of different tools on a pilot scale in order to be able to implement alternative metrics at an institutional level and embed it in the research lifecycle. These plans will be presented at the conference. The situation in the rest of the Netherlands may be somewhat different. Other universities in the Netherlands may approach alternative metrics in a different way and have different visions. Up to now no concrete initiatives have been taken to approach alternative metrics centrally – on a national level. TU Delft is conducting a survey to collect the data from the Dutch university libraries on their approach to altmetrics. In the questionnaire the university libraries are asked about their vision with regard to altmetrics, their goals, barriers, implementation plans, and if already set in place – about their workflows and usage statistics. The results of this survey will be presented as well as some thoughts on future steps at the Dutch university libraries.

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