An interesting thing about contemporary media is just how much of it is factual. From journalism to social media, YouTube to reality TV we are surrounded by media that claims to be true. Often this content has a definite agenda; it wants to persuade us, make us click, join in and pass it on. How can we understand our […]
The lack of reward mechanisms for public scholarship severely limits the future of public engagement in the academy.
Scholars are increasingly expected to consider the wider public in their teaching and research activities, but with little to negative promotion incentive. In fact, finds Christopher Meyers, much of what academics do does not fit into the standard boxes of teaching, scholarship and service. Perhaps it’s time to replace these categories with a single holistic and qualitative standard: High quality teacher-scholars, wherein all of one’s professional activities […]
Research assessment, altmetrics and tools for determining impact: Reading list for #HEFCEmetrics review launch.
David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, has announced that HEFCE are arranging an independent review of the role of metrics in research assessment and management. The Impact blog welcomes this review and will look to encourage wider discussion and debate on how research is currently assessed and how it could be in years to come. Over the last […]
HEFCE announces Open Access policy for the next REF in the UK: Why this Open Access policy will be a game-changer.
With the final consultation period now over, the Open Access policy for the next REF has been released. Alma Swan looks at the rollout which requires the deposit of articles into repositories and finds this is pragmatic but good policymaking. With that simple requirement, the culture in British universities can be shifted towards open access. Swan also notes areas where […]
The h-index attempts to measure the productivity and impact of the published work of scholar. But reducing scholarly work to a number in this way has significant limitations. Stacy Konkiel highlights four specific reasons the h-index fails to capture a complete picture of research impact. Furthermore, there are a variety of new altmetrics tools out there focusing on how to […]
This book explores the possibility of drawing upon a punk ethos to inspire sociology and to cultivate a vibrant future for the discipline. Aiming to fire the sociological imaginations of sociologists at any stage of their careers, from new students to established professors, it uses punk to think creatively about what sociology is and how it might be conducted. Dave […]
Celebrating art and interpretation that take on social challenges, Doris Sommer looks to steer the humanities back to engagement with the world. Among the cases that she covers are top-down initiatives of political leaders, such as those launched by Antanas Mockus, former mayor of Bogotá, Colombia, and also bottom-up movements like the Theatre of the Oppressed created by the Brazilian director, writer, […]
Impact Round-Up 22nd March: Data journalism, code as a research object, and the cure for impact factor mania.
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.
The high-profile launch of Nate Silver’s new FiveThirtyEight site (manifesto here), along with similar journalistic ventures like Vox Media, and The Upshot, provide the background for this week’s top recommended read by economist Allison Schrager. The problem with data journalism (Quartz), imparts […]
Business education can revive itself by building links with the public sector and embracing policy relevance.
Business schools have operated under the same pedagogical model for the past 30 years, making them a prime target for innovation. Mark Esposito pinpoints the emergence of a possible nexus between business schools and policy makers – a connection yet to be fully explored but with massive potential to help address complex problems of the future. While private and public […]
Open data sheds light on how universities are minority providers of commissioned research to government.
Anyone under the impression that universities are the dominant suppliers to government of commissioned research, advice, and knowledge, think again. Open data on government spending shows the relative dominance of other suppliers and mediators of knowledge to government – not least the private sector and think tanks. Simon Bastow presents some preliminary government-wide data.
Moves towards more transparent and open […]
From STEM to STEAM: The potential for arts to facilitate innovation, literacy and participatory democracy.
The value of the arts goes far beyond its monetary returns. Malaika Cunningham outlines how the arts play a huge role in boosting proficiency within STEM subjects. Creative thinking is needed for truly excellent scientists, engineers and mathematicians, and how better to foster this than a rounded education, which includes arts subjects? Arts education fosters a literate and innovative workforce and strengthens the […]
What do policymakers want from researchers? Blogs, elevator pitches and good old fashioned press mentions.
Duncan Green provides short and sweet translations of some of the key findings from a recent survey looking at how US policymakers use and value international studies research. The findings point to the importance of blogging, but also to the sustained influence of traditional print media. The future of evidence-informed networks may require a more engaged look at what policymakers […]
Impact Round-Up 22nd February: Channels of academic influence, visualisations and turning raw data into actionable knowledge.
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. This week, there was much discussion around Nicholas Kristof’s plea in the New York Times, Professors, We Need You and his mid-week addendum, Bridging the Moat Around Universities. Here is a comprehensive Roundup of Responses to Kristof’s Call for Professors in the […]
Engagement with academic research is thriving but more could be done to improve understanding of quantitative data.
Significant change has taken place in the UK and abroad in how academic knowledge is communicated, accessed and written, but persistent stereotypes of the unengaged, obscure professor are still widespread, evidenced most recently by last week’s New York Times article by Nicholas Kristof. Pat Thomson finds Kristof’s piece fails to account for the wealth of hybrid spaces for journalists, academics and the […]
Impact Round-Up 15th February: In gratitude to Stuart Hall, #publishperish14 and the fallacy of web objectivity.
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. In gratitude to Stuart Hall, a socialist intellectual who taught us to confront the political with a smile by Ben Carrington at Africa is a Country: Hall is also the figure that most makes apparent the critical distinction between […]
Improving on “Access to Research”: Restrictive access and licensing fail to meet the needs of the 21st century.
Major academic publishers have supported an initiative equipping public libraries with free access to a number of subscription journal articles. Cameron Neylon argues this Access to Research scheme is an empty political gesture that fails to meet the needs of the UK public. By web scraping the information provided by the initiative’s site, Neylon shows that the scope of the service […]
Coventry University have devoted time, talent and resources to come up with an embedded management tool to help academics plan and capture the impact of their research. Julie Bayley discusses the lessons learnt through the process of creating a functional, self-service solution that appeals to administrators and academics. As we head away from REF 2014, the HE community is […]
Why do academics choose useless titles for articles and chapters? Four steps to getting a better title.
An informative title for an article or chapter maximizes the likelihood that your audience correctly remembers enough about your arguments to re-discover what they are looking for. Without embedded cues, your work will sit undisturbed on other scholars’ PDF libraries, or languish unread among hundreds of millions of other documents on the Web. Patrick Dunleavy presents examples of frequently used […]