WSSSPE session on Policy:
Credit, Citation, Impact
Matthew Knepley, Jed Brown,
Lois Curfman McInnes, Barry Smith
Accurately Citing Software
and Algorithms Used in
The PETSc numerical libraries implement hundreds
of published algorithms and can use over 50 optional
external software packages.
When users publish results based on a simulation
involving PETSc, how do they know what
papers they should cite as relevant and
essential to their simulation?
model where the
library itself generates the bibtex items
based on exactly
what algorithms and portions of the code are used
in the application.
Jason Priem, Heather Piwowar
Toward a comprehensive
impact report for every
Alternative metrics, Alternative products
ImpactStory.org (formerly total-impact)
bare-bones support for software today:
Proposal to extend opensource ImpactStory web
(a) text-mine the bulk of the scholarly literature for
mentions of software
(b) track downloads, installations, conversation, and
(c) present impacts in a “research package”
integrating diverse research outputs.
Daniel S. Katz
Citation and Attribution of
Digital Products: Social and
we need to develop and build a set of tools and
(1) register digital products and
those who should be credited for those products
(2) track usage of the products, and
tie this usage to future products.
Product A is a software package equally written by
two authors: map is 50% credit to each.
Product B is a paper that depended on this package,
and the authors assign 10% credit to the package.
Transitive credit: the two authors of software
package Product A now each fairly claim 5%
credit for paper Product B.
If another paper is later written that extends the
product B paper and gives 10% credit to that paper,
the software package developers will also have 0.5%
credit for the new paper.
Neil Chue Hong, Brian Hole,
Software Papers: improving
the reusability and
sustainability of scientific
Journal of Open Research Software
an open access software metajournal
papers describing research software with
high reuse potential
paper and metadata is peer reviewed.
Frank Löffler, Steven R. Brandt,
Gabrielle Allen and Erik Schnetter
Cactus: Issues for
The most severe problem for developers in most
computational sciences currently is that
while most of the work is done creating hopefully
well-written, sustainable software,
the academic success is often exclusively tied to the
solution of the scientiﬁc problem the software was
Any requirement for citation would conﬂict
with its free-software license.
Common Starting Point
We need to improve credit for software that gets used.
people aren’t citing
people don’t know what to cite
software libraries, especially, are getting
the links between software and literature are
this is a source of strength, and needs to be
modelled as such.
make it citeable
track what software it is that people have been using
help people determine what they should cite
Issues undiscussed in these papers
how to get people to cite
- did discuss make it citeable, make it easy to cite
- but what about raising expectations so it is expected?
or push notifications (“have you cited this lately”) ?
or journal or funder requirements for citing
citing a given version, especially as tied to reproducibility
finely-grained authorship for old and large systems
how to sustain these solutions
• For more on the workshop:
• notes: bit.ly/wssspe13