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August 2015

In our previous post in this guest blog series, we introduced the Altmetric score and details pages, and briefly covered the insights that can be gained from looking at Altmetric data. The aim of this post is to discuss how journal editors can use the data to view, monitor and report on the online attention for the research they publish.

In the last few years altmetrics have been adopted by many institutions, publishers, funders and researchers as a way of tracking and monitoring the online attention, reach, and influence of published work. Increasingly these data are also being used to identify and report on the broader impacts of research to funders and other key stakeholders. In our previous post in this series we gave an overview of what the Altmetric data for each article on SpringerLink can provide, now we’d like to delve into the use cases a little more.

In this post we’ll cover some of the main things to consider when looking to use altmetrics data in your CV and for funding grant applications – including best practice, some tips to get you started, and potential pitfalls to avoid.

Altmetrics have been developed over the last few years as a way of monitoring the online conversations around scholarly research. The data can be used alongside traditional indicators of impact, such as the Impact Factor, to see how an article has been received, shared and communicated beyond the the academic sphere. The aim of this introductory blog post is to provide some context around the data and the sources Altmetric (a London-based provider of altmetrics data) tracks, and to explain some of the insights that can be gained by looking at the data.

As scholarly communication and research evaluation processes evolve, new measures and metrics have developed to help better monitor and report on the online activity that surrounds research outputs. Altmetrics, as these new indicators are known, offer a collated record of this online activity for readers and authors to explore and analyze.

Through August and September we will publish a series of posts authored by some of the team at Altmetric, a data science company who provide such attention data to authors, publishers, institutions and funders. The posts will discuss, amongst other topics, using altmetrics within your C.V.s and grant applications, and how journal editors can make use of the tools.

To kick-start the beginning of this special blog series, we decided to go to, well—the source—of Altmetric directly, by asking founder Euan Adie a few questions.