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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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    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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    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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    Four things policy-makers need to know about social media data and real time analytics.

Four things policy-makers need to know about social media data and real time analytics.

The retention and protection of social media data has attracted renewed attention from policy-makers in the UK and across the EU. Having studied the complexity of how social media data operate in contexts of crisis, Ella McPherson provided evidence to a select committee on what lessons can be learned on the ethical and methodological complications of social media analysis. The summary points […]

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    Twitter and blogs are not add-ons to academic research, but a simple reflection of the passion that underpins it.

Twitter and blogs are not add-ons to academic research, but a simple reflection of the passion that underpins it.

The role of the academic humanist has always been a public one – however mediated through teaching and publication, argues Tim Hitchcock. As central means to participate in public conversations, Twitter and blogging just make good academic sense. Hitchcock looks at how these new platforms are facilitating academic collaboration, teaching and public engagement. What starts as a blog, ends as an academic […]

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    Book Review: The War on Learning: Gaining Ground in the Digital University

Book Review: The War on Learning: Gaining Ground in the Digital University

In The War on Learning, Elizabeth Losh analyses recent trends in post-secondary education and the rhetoric around them. In an effort to identify educational technologies that might actually work, she looks at strategies including MOOCs, the gamification of subject matter, remix pedagogy, video lectures, and educational virtual worlds. Losh’s work is valuable reading for students and parents trying to make sense of when current […]

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    Higher Education community responds to cabinet reshuffle, but it is too soon to foretell David Willetts’ legacy.

Higher Education community responds to cabinet reshuffle, but it is too soon to foretell David Willetts’ legacy.

Following David Willetts’ resignation as part of the UK government’s cabinet reshuffle, Greg Clark MP has today been announced as the new Minister for Universities and Science. Steven Jones looks at the flurry of comment taking place on Twitter about the reshuffle, the government’s higher education initiatives over the past four years, and what might prove to be the lasting legacy of […]

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    Altmetrics may be able to help in evaluating societal reach, but research significance must be peer reviewed.

Altmetrics may be able to help in evaluating societal reach, but research significance must be peer reviewed.

Social media indicators of scholarly communication, or commonly referenced as altmetrics, are still far from being adopted as part of everyday research evaluation, but they already have stated value in indicating what is interesting and popular. Kim Holmberg argues these indicators have exciting potential for measuring the impact of public outreach. But further research is necessary to fully understand their value and possible […]

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    The Philosophy of Data Science (series) – Rob Kitchin: “Big data should complement small data, not replace them.”

The Philosophy of Data Science (series) – Rob Kitchin: “Big data should complement small data, not replace them.”

Over the coming weeks we will be featuring a series of interviews conducted by Mark Carrigan on the nature of ‘big data’ and the opportunities and challenges presented for scholarship with its growing influence. In this first interview, Rob Kitchin elaborates on the specific characteristics of big data, the hype and hubris surrounding its advent, and the distinction between data-driven science and empiricism.

What […]

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    Survey findings point to the benefits and risks associated with academics using social media.

Survey findings point to the benefits and risks associated with academics using social media.

While the advantages of social media are increasingly recognised by academics and universities, potential negative aspects need to be identified and managed by individuals and their institutions. Deborah Lupton presents the findings from her survey which underscore how social media can facilitate connection and sharing of material, however the speed and rapid churn of ideas, as well as the use of social media for […]

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Book Review: Going Viral by Karine Nahon and Jeff Hemsley

In Going, Viral Karine Nahon and Jeff Hemsley look to uncover the factors that make tweets, videos, and news stories go viral online. They analyze the characteristics of networks that shape virality, including the crucial role of gatekeepers who control the flow of information and connect networks to one another. This concise and insightful book targets a niche topic in the studies of digital […]

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    Five Minutes with Anne Barron and Mary Evans: “Academics seldom have the opportunity to discuss issues about their profession”

Five Minutes with Anne Barron and Mary Evans: “Academics seldom have the opportunity to discuss issues about their profession”

To mark the thirtieth anniversary of the death of social theorist Michel Foucault, Anne Barron and Mary Evans have organised a conference in late June for academics to reflect on his legacy in relation to higher education. Governing Academic Life will create an interdisciplinary space to discuss the public university, neoliberalism, academic publishing, and assessment measurement. Managing Editor Sierra Williams […]

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    Publicly available data from Twitter is public evidence and does not necessarily constitute an “ethical dilemma”.

Publicly available data from Twitter is public evidence and does not necessarily constitute an “ethical dilemma”.

An article in Scientific American suggests further ethical considerations should be made for research derived from Twitter data. Ernesto Priego questions first the extent to which Twitter will actually release all of its valuable data and also argues archiving and disseminating information from Twitter and other public archives does not have to be cause for an “ethical dilemma” so long […]

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Big data brings new power to open-source intelligence

The story of Eliot Higgins, a blogger who exploits publicly accessible material to piece together important facts about the Syrian conflict, offers a unique insight into the enormous potential of open-source intelligence. Matthew Moran describes how the networked society has spawned new analytical approaches and opportunities. 

In November 2013, the New Yorker published a profile of Eliot Higgins – or Brown Moses as he is known to almost 17,000 Twitter followers. […]

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    Video abstracts are a low-barrier means for publishers to extend the shelf life of research.

Video abstracts are a low-barrier means for publishers to extend the shelf life of research.

Similar to a standard article abstract, video abstracts typically cover key information on the background of the article’s study, methods used, results and discussion of impact.  However, Scott Spicer finds video abstracts extend the possible reach of research by providing the author a platform to communicate their research through a low-barrier, personalized, media-rich medium, in ways that would have been […]

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