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    ‘Frontier methods’ offer a powerful but accessible approach for measuring efficiency of public sector organisations

‘Frontier methods’ offer a powerful but accessible approach for measuring efficiency of public sector organisations

How can the efficiency of public sector organisations best be measured? Jesse Stroobants and Geert Bouckaert write that while the efficiency of an organisation is typically measured using performance indicators, there are some notable problems with this approach, such as the tendency for different indicators to produce conflicting conclusions on organisational performance. As an alternative, they outline so called ‘frontier methods’, which use […]

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    Let Elsevier Go: The potential savings from cancelling journal subscriptions would cover the Open Access transition.

Let Elsevier Go: The potential savings from cancelling journal subscriptions would cover the Open Access transition.

Dutch universities recently took a stand against publisher Elsevier following failed negotiations over subscription costs. As universities and library budgets worldwide look to transition to open access, these costs must be considered. Cameron Neylon looks at the options for funding the transition to open access and finds that whilst short term access would be an issue, the potential savings from […]

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    Five Minutes with Marieke Guy: “By opening up data, citizens can be more directly informed and involved in decision-making.”

Five Minutes with Marieke Guy: “By opening up data, citizens can be more directly informed and involved in decision-making.”

What exactly is open data and how does it relate to education? Marieke Guy from the Open Knowledge Foundation will be speaking at the LSE this Wednesday 26 November 5-7pm as part of the Learning Technology and Innovation NetworkED series (booking still open). Ahead of her talk she answers a few questions on the opportunities and vulnerabilities involved in providing greater access […]

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    Standards for scientific graphic presentation: Interactive figures could significantly improve understanding of data.

Standards for scientific graphic presentation: Interactive figures could significantly improve understanding of data.

Over the previous hundred years, a lot of work has gone into standardizing the way scientific data is presented. All of this knowledge has been largely forgotten. Jure Triglav wants us to bring the past back to life. Drawing on lessons learned from the New York City subway system and the graphic standards of 1914, he argues for the […]

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    Book Review: Reshaping the University: the Rise of the Regulated Market in Higher Education by David Palfreyman and Ted Tapper

Book Review: Reshaping the University: the Rise of the Regulated Market in Higher Education by David Palfreyman and Ted Tapper

This book focuses on the policy of removing almost entirely public support for the payment of student fees. Although it goes into great detail regarding the emergence of the regulated market as a way of delivering higher education to growing numbers, it does so with little apparent appreciation for what that emergence has required within the universities and in the […]

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    Developing social impact requires the research agenda to move beyond conventional academic boundaries.

Developing social impact requires the research agenda to move beyond conventional academic boundaries.

The Dutch Senate recently passed a new Standard Evaluation Protocol (SEP). The SEP highlights the importance of social impact for research. The new Protocol was developed by the KNAW (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences), VSNU (Association of Dutch universities) and NWO (Dutch Science Council) and is to be used to evaluate academic research from 2015-2021. Based on recent […]

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    Time to abandon the gold standard? Peer review for the REF falls far short of internationally accepted standards.

Time to abandon the gold standard? Peer review for the REF falls far short of internationally accepted standards.

The REF2014 results are set to be published next month. Alongside ongoing reviews of research assessment, Derek Sayer points to the many contradictions of the REF. Metrics may have problems, but a process that gives such extraordinary gatekeeping power to individual panel members is far worse. Ultimately, measuring research quality is fraught with difficulty. Perhaps we should instead be asking which […]

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    Embracing Messiness: Open access offers the chance to creatively experiment with scholarly publishing.

Embracing Messiness: Open access offers the chance to creatively experiment with scholarly publishing.

In the quest for greater access to scholarly work, the discussion has long been characterised as a search, for better or for worse, for the most sustainable model. In this transcript of her recent talk at the Post-Digital Scholar conference, Janneke Adema warns that framing the debate in terms of business models might actually lead to a watered-down version of open […]

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Buzzfeed: A new home for research?

Jeff Knezovich shares his experience using the online news portal Buzzfeed to share the latest research findings. For topics not usually at the front-and-centre, Buzzfeed provides a quick and easy way to bring people up to speed. Buzzfeed’s ‘splainer (short for ‘explainer’) format was very well received, with the post accessed ten times more than the PDF and research website […]

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    Economics is becoming an elite subject for elite UK universities

Economics is becoming an elite subject for elite UK universities

UK universities have had to become much more responsive to changes in the pattern of demand and compete with one another for different revenue streams. James Johnston and Alan Reeves ask how this has played out in relation to the undergraduate economics degree, finding that new universities have retreated from offering economics programmes even as student numbers rose substantially. The authors argue that the role of research […]

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    With Twitter’s poor signal-to-noise ratio, should social academia look to less corporate and more localised networks?

With Twitter’s poor signal-to-noise ratio, should social academia look to less corporate and more localised networks?

Social media platforms have become primary means for scholars to reach public audiences, but are scholars becoming overly reliant on sub-optimal corporate networks? With Twitter for example, it’s becoming harder to sift through the stream to find the really good stuff. Kris Shaffer is hoping others will join him in writing in more open, more user-controlled domains, as well as […]

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    Mobility Really Matters: Dynamism in the Higher Ed workplace will help institutions retain quality staff.

Mobility Really Matters: Dynamism in the Higher Ed workplace will help institutions retain quality staff.

Whilst the career route is well defined and understood for academic staff, the continual development of non-academic staff is less well defined. Dr Paul Greatrix looks at some emerging experiences across UK higher education and notes the positive benefits to those universities embracing managed staff rotation. Mobility and dynamism of staff is in the interest of both professional staff and […]

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November 12th, 2014|Higher Education|0 Comments|
  • 1280px-A_researcher_working_with_delicate_resource_at_The_National_Archives
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    Everyday webpages as scholarly source material: Interrogating the archived UK Web.

Everyday webpages as scholarly source material: Interrogating the archived UK Web.

With the advances in web analysis, Adam Crymble hails the opportunity for historians to turn to the Internet as a rich source in itself. But are historians trained to take advantage of this new opportunity? Corpus linguistics, data manipulation, clustering algorithms, and distant reading will be valuable skills for dealing with this new body of historical data.

The second talk […]

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    Book Review: Open Access and the Humanities: Contexts, Controversies and the Future by Martin Eve

Book Review: Open Access and the Humanities: Contexts, Controversies and the Future by Martin Eve

Martin Eve’s new book is essential reading for anyone interested in the future of open access and scholarly communication in the humanities. With chapters on digital economics, open licensing, and technological innovations, the book represents a rallying call for researchers to shape the future of open scholarly communication and public engagement, writes Jonathan Gray.

This review originally appeared on LSE Review of Books.
Open Access and […]

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    Comment, discuss, review: An essential guide to post-publication review sites.

Comment, discuss, review: An essential guide to post-publication review sites.

Andy Tattersall continues his discussion of post-publication peer review and provides an overview of the main tools and sites, from publisher platforms to independent forums, offering some kind of comment, discussion or review system for scholarly content.

Academic debate using the many Web 2.0 and social media tools freely available has only been embraced by a small percentage of academics. Interesting […]

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    “I only come here for the comments” – Exploring the controversy of post-publication peer review.

“I only come here for the comments” – Exploring the controversy of post-publication peer review.

The journal publishing model has long been criticised for being out of touch with modern, online communication trends. In the age of rapid-fire discussion, what hope is there for sustained, productive, peer review? Andy Tattersall looks at the shortcomings and opportunities of post-publication review online and picks apart the differences between reviewing, discussing and commenting in a scholarly context.

This […]

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    What makes a successful research project blog? Forums for generating ideas fare better than sharing final results.

What makes a successful research project blog? Forums for generating ideas fare better than sharing final results.

Coordinating a research project blog has many benefits, but it can lead to some difficulties in practice. Pat Thomson reflects on the types of project blogs in her experience worked better than others. The ones aimed at developing ideas and connecting with external partners were very useful. But the presentation of core findings were a concern to some funders. Furthermore, when […]

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This work by LSE Impact of Social Sciences blog is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported.