Sometimes I would put out a direct call to this network, along the lines of ‘Does anyone have a good example of … ’. In other cases I would post drafts of the content to my blog and receive comments and links to relevant material. Even without these direct appeals this distributed, global peer network represents an invaluable information source, comprising links to resources, commentary on issues, extended debate, use of new methods and technology, and contributions in the form of blog posts, videos and audio
The digital researcher1
Developing The Digital ResearcherNeal SumnerSenior LecturerLearning Development Centre
Aims• To introduce you to the range of digital tools and organisations which can support your research.• To introduce you to the role of social media in developing a research network and online identity• To explore the benefits of developing your online presence.
What kinds of tools are available?• Social networking tools• Social bookmarking, news and social citation• Research, writing and collaboration tools• Blogging and Microblogging tools• Academic and research blogs How can they help?
Why do researchers shy away from social networking?• I’m too old to do social networking…• I don’t have time!• Hey it’s MY research, I’m not sharing it• Only for people with big egos• Too hard to learn all these new technologies…
OK OK….so why use social networking tools?• Keep up-to-date and exchange information on current developments in your research field• Seeking sources of funding and support for your research• Identify potential collaborators and areas of common interest
…and there’s more! • Get involved with disciplinary, cross- disciplinary, cross- institutional and cross- sector research groups • Seek avenues for getting published • Explore career options NB the importance of maintaining clear personal and professional boundaries
How can these technologies support your researchactivities?• keeping records of meetings with supervisors• informal interactions with supervisors, peers and the wider academic community• document sharing and storage• space for personal reflection and peer review• keeping informed about the work of others in your field
Formal dialogue with supervisors • e-mail • Adobe Connect and/or Skype (audio/video conferencing tool which can record meetings and notes) • Google chat (audio/video conferencing tool) • Wikis (wiki software: e.g. Moodle, pbworks, MediaWiki) • Second Life (avatar-based 3D virtual world
Some uses for digital technology as a research tool• Crowd sourcing• Peer review• Collaborative working• Extending your research contacts
Why use Social bookmarking, news and social citationtools?To find out and share what other academics are reading with a view to developing a community in interest, practice and inquiryTo know who is reading the same stuff as you – what other work is going on in your area/discipline?Some popular tools are:• Diigo - www.diigo.com• Mendeley - www.mendeley.com• Zotero - www.zotero.org
Social networking tools• Academia.edu - www.academia.edu (>250,000 members, HE academics)• ResearchGate - www.researchgate.net (>700,000 members, professional scientists, can also join with Facebook or LinkedIn accounts)• Graduate Junction - www.graduatejunction.net 17,272 members, postgraduates• LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com
Diigo (Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Otherstuff)• Much more than a place to keep tabs on your websites• It allows you to share what you have found with others via Twitter, blogs etc.• You can build a personal learning network to see what others are reading• You can set up research groups (public, private or semi- private) and group tag!• Everything on Diigo is there because someone has thought it is worth saving
Mendeley - www.mendeley.com• ‘most likely to change the world for the better’ Guardian, July 2010• A free reference manager and academic social network founded in 2007• Combines a PDF and reference management app with Mendeley Web, an online social network for researchers• What I like best about Mendeley is being able to see what other researchers are reading at the moment. It helps to keep track of trends but also get new ideas and find new connections of bodies of knowledge.• It allows me to add and manage references that I regularly refer to, such as books, newspaper articles, journal articles, web pages and even films. Managing means I can group references around a certain topic and also add notes and tags.• All of this usually takes time but there also is a ‘web importer’ button that allows to easily add an item found on the web.• Extremely helpful is also the instant conversion of citation styles which can be a tedious and time consuming business, such as manually converting from “Chicago” to “Harvard” style”. • Dr. Michael Hohl • School of Art, Design and Architecture • University of Huddersfield
Research, writing and collaboration tools• Wiki - PBworks - http://pbworks.com• Document sharing - Dropbox - www.dropbox.com• Google Docs - http://docs.google.com• Wetpaint - www.wetpaint.com• Wikia - www.wikia.com• Wikispaces - www.wikispaces.com• Zoho Office Suite - www.zoho.com
Examples of academic and research blogs• PhD Blog (dot) Net - http://phdblog.net• http://thethesiswhisperer.wordpress.com/• Research blogging - http://www.researchblogging.org• Academic blog portal - http://www.academicblogs.org
Twitter? …really?• What I had for lunch?• Finding out celebrity gossip?• Collecting stalkers?• …much more!
Great for….• Keeping up to date• New way of communicating• Being part of a wider community• Widening your knowledge & research reach• Promoting what you do
Anything else?• Great for conferences and events (esp. if you are absent)• Gathering ideas… testing the water
Support for researchers • Networked researcher • Thesis whisperer • Vitae • PG toolbox • RIN
Developing your digital identity and reputation• An example from .... Mathematics! http://terrytao.wordpress.com/• http://terrytao.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/internet2.pdf‘Thanks to the internet, the type of insights once reserved for seminars or conference hallways can now be preserved, accumulated… and searched’• http://ssrn.com/• The move towards online journals• Academic reputation building in the blogosphere and twittersphere