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Get the impact you deserve: harness the power of sharing

Taking a look at some of the many ways in which you can share and promote your research

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As an author, you want to maximize the impact of your work and one of the best ways to do this is by ensuring that you reach the largest audience. Sharing your research and findings can help you make a greater impact in your community, leading to better collaborations and potentially new ideas and innovations. Sharing is great but there are some simple guidelines to follow, which vary depending on how you have published your article and the article version you wish to share. So how do you ensure maximum visibility for your work whilst also observing the small print? Read on to find out.

Supporting you at each stage of the publication process

One of the main areas of complexity for authors revolves around the different versions of an article and the varying rules which determine what you can and cannot do with these. Responsible sharing in line with copyright enables publishers to sustain high quality journals and the services they provide to the research community. Elsevier supports responsible sharing and we adhere to the voluntary sharing principles of the STM Association. What does that mean for you as an author? Let’s look at these different stages of publication and explore what you can do at each…

Article version sharing policy table

Preprint

The motto with preprints is “anytime, anywhere”! You are free to share your preprints on any platform, at any time. Once your article is published, we actively encourage authors to link from the preprint to the formal publication via the article’s digital object identifier (DOI). Millions of researchers have access to ScienceDirect, and so links will help your readers to find, access, cite, and use the best available version of your work. And if you make use of arXiv or RePEc, you also have the option to update your preprint with your accepted manuscript. A word of caution, however: preprints should not be added to or enhanced in any way in order to appear more like, or to substitute for, the final versions of articles. Stay inside these guidelines (and respect any journal-specific policies) and you’re good to go.

Accepted manuscript

When it comes to accepted manuscripts, the golden rule is that you can share your accepted manuscript publicly after the journal’s embargo period. We have a nifty journal embargo finder tool to help you work out when this is. You can immediately deposit your accepted manuscript in your institution’s repository for internal use, although do have to wait for the embargo period to pass before everyone can publicly access it.

We know that you may sometimes need to share your accepted manuscript straight away but we’ve got you covered for this, too. For example, you can upload your accepted manuscript to your non-commercial personal webpage or blog. Need to use your accepted manuscript for internal institutional reasons like classroom teaching? You can! Want to provide copies to students or research collaborators? Go ahead! What’s more, Elsevier also has agreements with commercial partners, to enable you to share your articles in private workgroups. These include platforms such as Zotero, Mendeley and CiteUlike.

Don’t forget that in all of the above cases, you should always ensure that there is a link back to the formal publication via the DOI. In addition, the paper you want to share should bear a CC-BY-NC-ND license (don’t worry, this is easy to do: click here to find out how!). Finally, as with preprints: the paper must not be added to or enhanced in any way to appear more like, or to substitute for, the published journal article.

Published journal article

The policies for sharing published journal articles (PJAs) differ for subscription and gold open access articles so be sure you know what sort of article you are publishing.

Subscription articles

With subscription articles, we encourage you to share a link to your article rather than the full-text. We have even developed a tool to enable you to share full text easily: Share Links. After your article is published Elsevier will send you a ‘Share Link’: a personal, customized short link that provides 50 days’ free access to your newly-published article. Anyone clicking on the Share Link within the 50-day period will be taken directly to the article with no sign up or registration required. Why not use the Share Link on social media, on your institutional webpage or include it in your email signature? The more links there are to your article from a range of relevant sources, the more readers you’ll attract and the higher it will appear on search engine results.

If you are affiliated with a library that subscribes to ScienceDirect you have additional private sharing rights for others’ research accessed under that agreement, for example for classroom teaching, internal training and inclusion of the article for grant funding purposes. In all other cases sharing of published subscription journal articles is by agreement only.

Gold open access licensing and sharing

If your article is published open access, anyone will be able to access your article to read it.  The reuse license you select will determine how others can reuse your article and where you can post it. Elsevier offers two choices of reuse license: CC-BY and CC-BY-NC-ND. A key difference between these two licenses is that one, CC-BY, enables commercial reuse while the other, CC-BY-NC-ND does not. CC-BY articles may be posted on any platform and reused for commercial purposes whereas CC-BY-NC-ND licensed articles may be shared on non-commercial platforms only.

There is no joy in possession without sharing.

- Erasmus

Still have questions?

For further information on responsible sharing and publisher policies that support this, visit the How Can I Share It? website. This useful platform enables authors to search for an article by DOI, an easy way to check where a journal article can be shared in line with the paper’s access and usage rights.

If the question you had still hasn’t been answered here, then do check out our detailed guide to sharing and promoting your article or email us at: permissions@elsevier.com. Otherwise, harness the power of sharing now and ensure you are getting maximum visibility for your research.

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