New Kudos service helps researchers boost their visibility and impact

Author: Dr. Inez van Korlaar

Researchers are increasingly evaluated not only by the number of articles they have published but also by their impact.

Traditionally, the impact of publications is measured by citations. However, not only does it take a while for citations to begin accumulating, they also provide a limited picture of an article's reach. For that reason, other metrics – such as readership figures, social media mentions, and captures and shares on academic networks – are proving increasingly popular. And the result is that you as authors are required to play an ever more active role in making sure your work receives the attention it deserves.

That is where a new service called Kudos comes in.

What is Kudos?

KudosIn the words of its founders, Kudos was developed to help researchers, their institutions and funders "measure, monitor and maximize" the visibility and impact of their published articles. It does this by focusing on three core principles:

  • Readers are increasingly struggling to filter the growing quantity of published research.
  • Information that supports the ability of users to filter their searches – such as lay summaries and impact statements – often exists but is not made public.
  • Authors are in the best position to increase the awareness and impact of their work, but they don't always know how.


Kudos provides a platform for:

  • Assembling and creating information to help search filtering.
  • Sharing information to drive discovery.
  • Measuring and monitoring the effect of both activities. 


 Philip GalePhilip Gale, Professor of Supramolecular Chemistry and Head of the School of Chemistry at the University of Southampton, has been involved in the project pilot and has found the service really useful. He said: "It not only helps me improve the visibility of my papers, by highlighting them to my social network, but also provides a way of widening the audience for the work by linking a lay summary of the work to the paper."

After a successful alpha release phase in partnership with AIP Publishing, the Royal Society of Chemistry and Taylor & Francis, Kudos is ready to take the next step and has signed up additional publishers, including Elsevier, for their beta phase. During this beta phase, which runs from April–December this year, we will test the tool with 22 journals.

Elsevier journals participating in the Kudos initiative are:

American Heart Journal

MethodsX

Evolution and Human Behavior

Journal of Research in Personality

Journal of Molecular Biology

Cognition

The Journal of the Economics of Ageing

Journal of Archaeological Science

Journal of Consumer Psychology

Science of the Total Environment

Leukemia Research Reports

Journal of Human Evolution

Thrombosis Research

Fertility and Sterility

Journal of Functional Foods

Journal of Adolescent Health

Animal Behavior

Virology

Appetite

Vaccine

Neuroimage

Resuscitation

How Kudos works

Following publication of their articles, authors from participating journals will receive an email asking them to log on to the Kudos platform. On the platform, they will be led through various steps that prompt them to explain their article; add context via links to other content such as images and data; and share their article via social networks and email.

The Kudos platform, which is free for authors, allows authors to see the effect of their actions on altmetrics (via Altmetric.com) and data about the usage of their article on Elsevier's ScienceDirect.

The alpha pilot site for Kudos was launched in September last year and during the three-month pilot period more than 5,500 authors registered. They have claimed articles, enhanced them with additional metadata (such as a short title and lay summary) and links to related resources, and shared them via email and social networks, which has led to increased usage of those articles.

During the beta phase, Kudos is working with a much wider group of publishers, articles and authors, which will enable them to undertake more rigorous analysis of the effectiveness of the service, and to explore variables such as subscription versus open access.

AudioSlides allow authors to make mini-webcasts about their papers

Last year, Elsevier's Article of the Future team launched a novel approach to helping authors ensure their research gets the attention it deserves - AudioSlides.

AudioSlides are 5-minute webcast-style presentations created by the authors of journal articles. Using a blend of slides (PDF and PowerPoint) and voice-over, you can explain your research in your own words. The resulting presentation appears alongside your published article on ScienceDirect and, like the abstract, can be viewed by subscribers and non-subscribers alike.

Because AudioSlides presentations are made available under a Creative Commons open-access license, you can also embed them on your personal or institutional websites.

The team has also recently made it possible for you to download your presentations in mp4/movie format so you can promote them through other channels, such as YouTube, or in presentations at workshops and conferences.

Since the initiative was launched, more than 1,760 AudioSlides presentations have been created.

Author biography

Dr. Inez van KorlaarDr. Inez van Korlaar
DIRECTOR OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Inez van Korlaar (@InezvKorlaar) joined Elsevier in 2006. After three years in publishing, she moved to the marketing communications department of STM Journals. In her current role she is responsible for global marketing communication projects, which includes outreach to researchers in their role as an author. She has a PhD in health psychology from Leiden University in The Netherlands and is based in Amsterdam.