Career Tips & Advice

What Mendeley can do for you and your career

One of the most common things we hear from grad students and postdocs after showing them Mendeley is "Why didn't someone show me this earlier!"

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One of the most common things we hear from grad students and postdocs after showing them Mendeley is "Why didn't someone show me this earlier!" Once you hear about what Mendeley can do, though, you might decide to keep it a secret and just let your colleagues or your PI think you are better at finding papers than they are. Here's a brief summary of what Mendeley can do for you:


Tired of downloading and renaming PDFs from ScienceDirect-32.pdf to something more readable? Let Mendeley do the work for you! Mendeley automatically extracts metadata from PDFs and turns them into a searchable library. The file organizer can automatically rename and organize your papers on your hard drive however you'd like, so all you have to do is download the PDF and let Mendeley take it from there. Importing papers from online databases is just as easy using the Web Importer to pull in the document using your web browser of choice, and we can also read and write common reference formats such as RIS and BibTeX.


How many times do all the important papers on YFG1 need to be searched out and collected by new people entering the field? Wouldn't it be great if there was one place you could go to find all the latest research in your research topic already collected? With hundreds of thousands of groups on Mendeley web, chances are that you'll find a group which has done just that. You can find and join a public group, or create a private group to share papers and notes with just your colleagues.


Mendeley can help you find the best research through the same technology that Netflix helps you find a great movie. Searching our catalog allows you to find hidden gems using unique features such as ranking by readership, filtering for open access or full-text availability, date ranges, and more. On each paper's page in our catalog we surface related papers and popular groups and tags, to add a bit of helpful serendipity to your search, but it doesn't stop there. Hundreds of developers take advantage of our Open API to build cool new tools that leverage our open data or to integrate Mendeley into their app. Check out Impact Story ( or to see this in action, or look for us on your favorite site.


When it finally comes time to write up is when you really reap the rewards of making Mendeley part of your research workflow.

Adding citations to your manuscript in any of over 6000 styles is as easy as search, point, and click and Mendeley will generate your bibliography automatically, keeping the whole document in sync as you insert sections or move things around. Working with collaborators is simple too. All the information needed to work with the references is embedded in your document, so you can send it to a co-author and any references you added will be available for them as well.

What are some cool tools I wish existed when I was in grad school?

Mendeley for sure, but also Science Exchange, Figshare, and Microryza would have really made my PhD much better.

Author biography

Dr. William GunnDr. William Gunn is the Head of Academic Outreach for Mendeley, a research management tool for collaboration and discovery. Dr. Gunn attended Tulane University as a Louisiana Board of Regents Fellow, receiving his Ph.D in Biomedical Science from the Center for Gene Therapy at Tulane University in 2008. His research involved dissecting the molecular mechanism of bone metastasis in multiple myeloma and resulted in a novel treatment approach employing mesenchymal stem cells, the body's own reparative forces. Frustrated with the inefficiencies of the modern research process, he left academia and established the biology program at Genalyte, a novel diagnostics startup. At Mendeley, he works to make research more impactful and reproducible and is an expert on altmetrics, reproducibility, and open access.

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