Month: July 2015

A compilation of videos and slides from #ReCon_15

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(All pictures are Public Domain and videos are CC-BY)

Session 1

Beyond the paper: publishing data, software & more

Moderated by Joanna Young

Researchers around the world are producing large quantities of data, images and information every day. In addition, they are writing software, building databases, producing videos, images and other forms of media. How can we manage and share this properly? How can we ensure that researchers receive credit for different outputs?

Scott Edmunds – “Beyond dead trees: publishing digital research objects”


Post internet, the world quite literally is our oyster. Big data, open data, uploading, downloading are just a few of the terms that we take for granted in an online age. SLIDES

Arfon Smith – “Predicting the future of publishing” SLIDES


Stephanie Dawson – “The Big Picture: Open Access content aggregators as drivers of impact” SLIDES


How do researchers identify the most relevant papers from roughly 1.8 million articles published in ca. 28,000 scholarly journals each year? And how does discovery lead to “impact”? Established aggregators have traditionally depended on citation counts as the principle measure of relevance. As the Open Access movement sets increasing amounts of data (articles and references) free on the internet, new ways to collect, rate and rank content across publishers are being developed for and by the digital generation. The crux of the Open Access movement may well not be its moral imperative or its new business model, but the myriad of projects which can build on access to structured digital information. How will new Open Access aggregators with novel, open measurements of impact affect the current publishing landscape? Case study: the ScienceOpen platform currently aggregates 1.5 million Open Access articles and is developing tools to showcase excellent research across publishers via editorial selection in Collections.


Peter Burnhill – “Where data and journal content collide: what does it mean to ‘publish your data’?SLIDES


Session 2

Moderated by Graham Steel

Digital communities and social networks for educators and researchers

There has been a rapid rise in the number of digital communities and social networks designed for researchers/educators. How are we using these communities? Are we starting to use them more for collaborations? What are the key benefits of these networks, platforms and communities? This session will explore how we currently use these and how we might use them in the future.

Hello Edinburgh from Mendeley

Fran Ayers from our Sponsor, Mendeley SLIDES


Steve Wheeler – “The Future is Open: Education in the digital age” SLIDES


The advent of the World Wide Web, and the popular emergence of social media have together forged new opportunities for education. The so called democratisation of knowledge has been promoted by the open nature of the Web and amplified by social networks and sharing services. What does this mean for education and how can it be harnessed appropriately for education? In this presentation Steve will explore the open nature of the web, its dangers as well as its benefits and discuss a number of new and emerging characteristics such as the wisdom of crowds, rhizomatic learning, and open scholarship. Openness also includes open software, open practices and open publishing, as well as the rise of Massive Open Online Courses and open learning. What will these mean for the future of education, and what new skills and literacies will teachers and students need to make the most of these opportunities?

Session 3

Moderated by Joanna Young

Altmetrics, analytics and tracking engagement

Citations, H-Indexes, Journal Impact Factor, article downloads, tweets… several metrics now exist to measure research. Researchers, departments, institutions and journals can track engagement at the journal, article and individual levels. How will these diverse range of metrics be used in future?

Euan Adie – “Seven Lessons: what we’ve learned from trying to measure impactSLIDES


Anna Clements – “So where does the University Library fit in : Digital Research services at the University of St Andrews” SLIDES


Anna’s talk includes Snowball metrics – but also largely looking at how we generally have responded to, and perhaps now leading on, the changes in funder mandates, publisher policies and technological advances affecting the research process.

Kaveh Bazargan – “Letting go of 350 years’ legacy – painful but essential” SLIDES


Kaveh showed how publishing can be more accurate, faster and much cheaper, by using online systems, allowing authors and journal editors to work more enjoyably, and letting the computer do the work.

Session 4

Moderated by Graham Steel

Incentives and impact

As research communication and academia evolve, how will researchers have to adapt? Impact is now a component of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) but how will this affect how research is performed and disseminated? What effect will this have on research careers? What incentives are required and how can researchers optimise their impact?

Stephen Curry – “Re-thinking research with a view to impact: an academic perspective” SLIDES


In this talk, Stephen picked up on issues of metrics, altmetrics (both considered in the HEFCE metrics review) and the whole interaction between academic publishing and our mis-firing culture of incentives, with particular mention of the need to encourage academics to be more accountable to the public that funds them.

Martin Fenner – “Moving beyond the impact factor, what changes are needed at the government, university and individual levels?” SLIDES

It is widely accepted that Journal Impact Factor (JIF) has its many flaws. With this in mind, what are the alternatives to JIF and where are we headed in this regard?   

Ian Viney – “Capturing and understanding research impact on an international scale” SLIDES


Research councils have encouraged the detailed collection of feedback on research output, from researchers across the UK, using the Researchfish system.  This approach has built a national dataset, supported by 100 UK research organisations, containing 1.1 million reports of output linked to £40bn of public and charity research funding.  Funding agencies outside the UK are beginning to use Researchfish with new subscribers in Canada and Denmark.  Dr Viney will outline RCUK plans to improve and extend the evidence of research progress, productivity and quality.  Analysis of this data is increasingly being used in “science of science policy” studies to better understand what leads to impact and to improve research evaluation and strategy development.  Dr Viney will summarise some of these projects and their main findings to date.

Panel Discussion featuring: Euan Adie (Altmetric), Martin Fenner (PLOS), Ian Viney (MRC) & Stephen Curry (ICL)



Many thanks to our Audio/Visual assistant for the day, Peter Doris of Nexus Digital Media for filming the Conference.

peter doris