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    How the Digital Humanities are using Slack to support and build a geographically dispersed intellectual community.

How the Digital Humanities are using Slack to support and build a geographically dispersed intellectual community.

Slack is a web platform aimed at improving team communication and offers some promising features for academic communities. Amanda Visconti shares the experiences of the Digital Humanities Slack. With chat rooms organised by theme, users share resources with colleagues, discuss specific theories or projects, and find out more about what people are working on. With a code of conduct in […]

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    Join the team! The LSE Impact Blog is looking for a new editor.

Join the team! The LSE Impact Blog is looking for a new editor.

The Impact Blog is currently recruiting for the position of Editor. This is a great opportunity to join our team and help shape the future of scholarly communication! The Communications Division at LSE is seeking a highly motivated and enthusiastic individual with experience working with academic writing and a keen interest in digital scholarship and academic impact to work as […]

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    Hootsuite for academia? How to increase the visibility, downloads and impact of publications using Kudos

Hootsuite for academia? How to increase the visibility, downloads and impact of publications using Kudos

Kudos is a web-based service that aims to increase the visibility of academic publications and their eventual impact. Charlie Rapple provides background on why Kudos was created and what the team have learned since its launch in 2014. The service looks to provide a clear picture to researchers, publishers and institutions of how to optimise their communications activity. Recent investigations […]

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    How should academics interact with policy makers? Lessons on building a long-term advocacy strategy.

How should academics interact with policy makers? Lessons on building a long-term advocacy strategy.

What can academics learn from how civil society organisations and NGOs approach policy impact? Julia Himmrich argues that academics have a lot to gain from embracing the practices of long-term advocacy. Advocacy is about establishing relationships and creating a community of experts both in and outside of government who can give informed input on policies. Being more aware of the […]

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    Conference rage: How did something as truly awful as panel discussions become the default format?

Conference rage: How did something as truly awful as panel discussions become the default format?

The relatively low impact of many academic conferences suggests it may be time for a rethink, argues Duncan Green. ‘Manels’ (male only panels) are an outrage, but why not go for complete abolition, rather than mere gender balance? With people reading out papers, terrible powerpoints crammed with too many words, or illegible graphics, it is time for innovation in format. We […]

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    “We should expect more, not less of our profession”: Responses to ‘Should academics be expected to change policy?’

“We should expect more, not less of our profession”: Responses to ‘Should academics be expected to change policy?’

James Lloyd’s recent post “Should academics be expected to change policy? Six reasons why it is unrealistic for research to drive policy change” has received considerable attention in research and policy circles since it was first published two weeks ago. Drawing on their respective experiences with research impact in policymaking, Chris Neff, Paul Smyth and Luke Craven each offer […]

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    Are we seeing a new ‘inequality paradigm’ in social science?

Are we seeing a new ‘inequality paradigm’ in social science?

Social scientists have long been concerned with inequality, yet the focus has often been on its theoretical and political aspects. This is now starting to change, writes Mike Savage. Thanks to research interventions by scholars, together with attempts to institutionalise  cross-disciplinary work, the focus is shifting from normative debates and towards the more technical, empirical and historical problems of inequality.

The […]

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    0 is the magic number: Why small numbers matter just as much as large ones when we talk about altmetrics.

0 is the magic number: Why small numbers matter just as much as large ones when we talk about altmetrics.

The problem many detractors have with altmetrics as a concept is that it seems heavily focused on numbers that may or may not be meaningful. Andy Tattersall sees this as a legitimate concern but argues researchers should consider further what can be gained from these scores, or indeed, the lack of one. In a world increasingly governed by impact and […]

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    Book Review: Academic Diary: Or Why Higher Education Still Matters by Les Back

Book Review: Academic Diary: Or Why Higher Education Still Matters by Les Back

Presenting a collection of diary-style entries as though from a single academic year, Les Back chronicles three decades of his career in Academic Diary: Or Why Higher Education Still Matters. The book offers witty and thought-provoking insight into such topics as writing, PhD supervision, viva examiners and dealing with academic colleagues, as well as reflecting on some of the serious […]

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    Is it really that difficult to find women to talk about the EU Referendum?

Is it really that difficult to find women to talk about the EU Referendum?

The significant absence of expert women’s voices from media debates and academic events related to the EU Referendum has been widely reported. Roberta Guerrina, Toni Haastrup, Katharine Wright share a list of women EU experts and argue there are in fact many women voices on these issues and they are not difficult to find. More work needs to be done by political […]

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    Accuracy, Transparency and Improv! Best practices for building trust between scientists and communications staff

Accuracy, Transparency and Improv! Best practices for building trust between scientists and communications staff

Researchers are increasingly considering the communication of their work, but it is equally worth considering the many actors at universities and external organisations that are already engaged in these activities. Often, misunderstandings and unclear objectives of the collaboration lead to a breakdown in trust. Aaron Huertas looks at how scientists and communications staff can build effective relationships.  

A lot of […]

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    How to read and understand a scientific paper: a guide for non-scientists

How to read and understand a scientific paper: a guide for non-scientists

From vaccinations to climate change, getting science wrong has very real consequences. But journal articles, a primary way science is communicated in academia, are a different format to newspaper articles or blogs and require a level of skill and undoubtedly a greater amount of patience. Here Jennifer Raff has prepared a helpful guide for non-scientists on how to read a scientific paper. These steps […]

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    Taking Culture Seriously: How can we build positive change and coherent practice within our research communities?

Taking Culture Seriously: How can we build positive change and coherent practice within our research communities?

Change in higher education often progresses slowly. If scholars are serious about wanting to change disciplinary and institutional cultures and not merely to wait for Cultural Change to magically happen, Cameron Neylon argues we need to consider the differing approaches to how certain cultures operate, interact and eventually change. Ultimately, change in higher education requires a variety of levers […]

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    Algorithmic accountability in scholarship: what we can learn from #DeleteAcademiaEdu

Algorithmic accountability in scholarship: what we can learn from #DeleteAcademiaEdu

The controversy surrounding Academia.edu highlights the flaws and limitations of existing scholarly infrastructures. Jean-Christophe Plantin explores the intersection of algorithms, academic research and platforms for scholarly publications. He argues that there is a need to develop a values-centred approach in the development of article-sharing platforms, with suitably designed algorithms.

The networking and article-sharing platform academia.edu has been at the centre of a controversy in […]

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    Why do university-managed blogs matter? On the importance of public, open and networked digital infrastructure.

Why do university-managed blogs matter? On the importance of public, open and networked digital infrastructure.

Academic blogging is increasingly valued by academics and institutions as a worthwhile activity. But universities are still struggling to provide the right balance of infrastructure and services to support their academics’ online presence. As universities look to external providers to extend the reach of scholarly ideas, what might be lost by not investing in in-house efforts? Sierra Williams identifies […]

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    Nine things you need to know about copyright: A good practice guide for administrators, librarians and academics.

Nine things you need to know about copyright: A good practice guide for administrators, librarians and academics.

It is impossible to work in a university and avoid coming into contact with copyright at some point, especially given the ease with which online content can be copied, pasted, streamed, downloaded and shared. Chris Morrison and Jane Secker provide a helpful explainer of copyright in universities and break down the complexity of how copyright works in practice.

The Association […]

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    Ten years on, how are universities using Twitter to engage with their communities? #LoveTwitter LSE Round-Up

Ten years on, how are universities using Twitter to engage with their communities? #LoveTwitter LSE Round-Up

Amy Mollett, Social Media Manager at the London School of Economics, rounds up how LSE currently uses Twitter for sharing research, interacting with students and alumni, and promoting events. She also looks at what the future of academic social media might look like. For #LoveTwitter day she digs into the altmetrics and shares the most tweeted about pieces of […]

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