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    Data carpentry is a skilled, hands-on craft and will form a major part of data science in the future.

Data carpentry is a skilled, hands-on craft and will form a major part of data science in the future.

As data science becomes all the more relevant and indeed, profitable, attention has been placed on the value of cleaning a data set. David Mimno unpicks the term and the process and suggests that data carpentry may be a more suitable description. There is no such thing as pure or clean data buried in a thin layer of non-clean data. In […]

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    Academia and storytelling are not incompatible – how to reduce the risks and gain control of your research narrative.

Academia and storytelling are not incompatible – how to reduce the risks and gain control of your research narrative.

Rigorous research and attention-grabbing storytelling are very different trades and it is clear there are professional and personal risks for academics looking to translate complex data into bite-size stories. But Cheryl Brumley argues the narrative arc and rigorous research are not inherently incompatible and steps can be taken to minimise the associated risks. By focusing on new audiences and by maintaining […]

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    Reconceptualising risk in research: The call to do no harm goes far beyond the field.

Reconceptualising risk in research: The call to do no harm goes far beyond the field.

A session at the Royal Geographical Society’s annual conference will explore the physical, emotional and reputational risks involved in doing research, with the hope that this will in turn, provide a starting point for a more comprehensive framework for understanding how risk operates. Amiera Sawas will be co-chairing the session and writes here on her experiences with risks in […]

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    Podcasts can ‘level the playing field’ for researchers looking to break the mould and share accessible findings.

Podcasts can ‘level the playing field’ for researchers looking to break the mould and share accessible findings.

Viva Voce is a website platform that allows social science researchers to set up five minute podcasts about their research. Gemma Sou argues podcasts are an ideal medium for early career researchers as social media tend to mirror the academic environment, with CV-like publication lists and stratified networks. By literally giving researchers a voice, findings can be brought to life […]

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    Wikimedia community are a digital age success and natural allies for academic communication and research engagement.

Wikimedia community are a digital age success and natural allies for academic communication and research engagement.

Wikimedians and the wider open information community are academics’ natural allies in knowledge creation, dissemination, research engagement and ultimately justifying public research funding. Cameron Neylon argues there is much these ‘amateurs’ can teach us about managing information at scale and making it accessible and usable. Scholarly knowledge is special because of the validation and assessment processes it goes though. But […]

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    Book Review: Society and the Internet: How Networks of Information and Communication are Changing our Lives

Book Review: Society and the Internet: How Networks of Information and Communication are Changing our Lives

This book brings together research that addresses some of the most significant cultural, economic, and political roles of the Internet. Peter Webster finds that individually, the essays in this volume are uniformly strong: lucid, cogent and concise, and accompanied with useful lists of further reading. As a whole, the volume prompts fertile reflections on the method and purpose of the new discipline […]

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    Impact Round-Up 9th August: Research recommendations, open data outcomes, and keeping open access simple.

Impact Round-Up 9th August: Research recommendations, open data outcomes, and keeping open access simple.

Managing Editor Sierra Williams presents a round-up of popular stories from around the web on higher education, academic impact, and trends in scholarly communication.

Jennifer Lin at PLOS announced an exciting new recommendations feature to be implemented across the PLOS journals in Diving into the haystack to make more hay? at the PLOS Tech Blog. Linking up with figshare, the Related Content tab on […]

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    How-to guide to using web automation tools to collate impact evidence from social media.

How-to guide to using web automation tools to collate impact evidence from social media.

With such diffuse streams of web activity and academic engagement, there is a great need for simple ways to capture and record this valuable data, whether for personal use or reporting purposes. Alistair Brown provides an overview on useful automation tools that streamline the process. Over time, depending on the scope of your search and social media activity, setting up these […]

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    Capturing the value of university-business collaboration in education requires flexible approach to measurement tools

Capturing the value of university-business collaboration in education requires flexible approach to measurement tools

Co-operation between businesses and universities is now firmly on the agenda. However, co-operation in the field of education plays something of a runner-up to co-operation in the field of research, particularly when it comes to valuing and measuring the outcomes of this. Adrian Healy recently led an exploratory study for the European Commission’s Directorate General of Education and Culture, examining […]

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    Audible Impact Episode 3: Big Data and the Future of the Social Sciences

Audible Impact Episode 3: Big Data and the Future of the Social Sciences

 

In this podcast, Professor Patrick Dunleavy talks about how big data will affect the future of the social sciences. Say goodbye to academic siloes as we enter into a new age of cross/multi/and inter-disciplinary research. In this changing landscape, the old boundaries between physical, social and data science disintegrate. Here Professor Dunleavy talks about the Social Science of Human-Dominated […]

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    The Open Educational Resources Impact Map: researching impact through openness and collaboration.

The Open Educational Resources Impact Map: researching impact through openness and collaboration.

Much sharing and use of open educational resources (OER) is relatively informal, difficult to observe, and part of a wider pattern of open activity. What the open education movement needs is a way to draw together disparate fragments of evidence into a coherent analytic framework. Rob Farrow provides background on a project devoted to consolidating efforts of OER practitioners […]

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    Focus and credibility will help academic blogs thrive but negative perceptions must be challenged.

Focus and credibility will help academic blogs thrive but negative perceptions must be challenged.

Whilst academic involvement in blogging is on the rise, it may not yet be considered standard academic practice. Many universities remain cautious due to perceived risks associated with lack of content control. Achilleas Kostoulas finds the openness and equality of blogs is fundamentally more democratic than other forms of scholarly debate. Here he reflects on some of the basic questions relating to […]

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    Book Review: Heidegger and the Media by David Gunkel and Paul A. Taylor

Book Review: Heidegger and the Media by David Gunkel and Paul A. Taylor

Martin Heidegger has been largely ignored within communications studies, but this book aims to show the relevance of his work for the field. David Gunkel and Paul A. Taylor analyse Heidegger’s theory of language and its relevance to communications studies, and assess Heidegger’s legacy for future developments in media theory. Niall Flynn finds this a clear and thought-provoking read, though a touch more […]

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    Future-looking research on public sector reform will help address challenges brought on by the financial crisis.

Future-looking research on public sector reform will help address challenges brought on by the financial crisis.

What challenges do austerity policies pose for effective public administration across Europe? Dion Curry writes on the views of citizens and public sector executives on trends within public administration over the last five years. He notes that while perceptions of recent developments are complex and at times contradictory, it is important that academics and practitioners work together to generate evidence-based public […]

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    Low visibility of Latin American repositories in Google Scholar: technical incompatibility or lack of web strategy?

Low visibility of Latin American repositories in Google Scholar: technical incompatibility or lack of web strategy?

The content in many repositories in Latin America fail to come up in systematic searches largely due to the inadequate use of domain names and metadata schema, find Enrique Orduña-Malea and Emilio Delgado-López-Cózar. Institutional repositories are ultimately websites and concepts such as usability, information architecture, search engine optimization, among others, should be considered in their primary design. In a context like […]

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    The Impact Factor and Its Discontents: Reading list on controversies and shortcomings of the Journal Impact Factor.

The Impact Factor and Its Discontents: Reading list on controversies and shortcomings of the Journal Impact Factor.

Thomson Reuters have released the annual round of updates to their ranked list of journals by journal impact factor (JIF) in yesterday’s Journal Citation Reports. Impact Factors have come under increasing scrutiny in recent years for their lack of transparency and for misleading attempts at research assessment. Last year the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) took a groundbreaking stance […]

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    Replication of government research uncovers shaky evidence on relationship between school and degree performance.

Replication of government research uncovers shaky evidence on relationship between school and degree performance.

Interested in the statistical analysis used to justify the Department of Education’s reforms, Ron Johnston, Kelvyn Jones, David Manley, Tony Hoare and Richard Harris requested the data related to school performance and degree results via a Freedom of Information request. One year later the dataset was finally made available and they were able to identify some substantial flaws in the government research including sample […]

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