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Posts Tagged ‘ORCID’

Reflections on the ORCID Outreach Meeting

Posted by Brian Kelly on 24 May 2013

Cameron Neylon summarises the meetings

Cameron Neylon, PLoS, summarises the meetings

Yesterday I attended an ORCID Outreach Meeting which was held at the University of Oxford. As described in Wikipedia ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) is a “nonproprietary alphanumeric code to uniquely identify scientific and other academic authors. This addresses the problem that a particular author’s contributions to the scientific literature can be hard to electronically recognize as most personal names are not unique, they can change (such as with marriage), have cultural differences in name order, contain inconsistent use of first-name abbreviations and employ different writing systems.” The outreach meeting provided an opportunity to hear about take-up of ORCID IDs, see examples of systens which are being developed to manage or exploit ORCID IDs and to hear about plans for further activities.

The half-day meeting was held at St Anne’s College, University of Oxford. In the afternoon a meeting on “Getting Credit for your Work: A Symposium on Research Attribution” was co-hosted with Dryad, a curated resource that makes the data underlying scientific publications discoverable, freely reusable, and citable.

I enjoyed the meeting and found it useful to see how ORCID adoption is growing steadily, but also to see the demonstrations which illustrated how ORCID is being used by a variety of organisations. However, as was discussed during the meeting, there is a need to go beyond the early adopters in order to ensure that take-up of ORCID IDs continues.

I was pleased the the slides used by the speakers were made available on Slideshare and that this was done shortly on the day of the event. I’ve embedded the slides which were used during the morning’s event below. Note that these are also available from the ORCIDSlides Slideshare account.

Presentations by ORCID Staff


Status and Plans, Laure Haak, ORCID Executive Director

ORCID Outreach, Rebecca Bryant, ORCID Director of Community

Technical Update, Laura Paglione, ORCID Technical Director

Integration Demos


Integrating ORCID in Profiles and Screen Shots [remote presentation],
Chris Dorney, Boston University

Capturing ORCID iDs in the manuscript submission and production process, Paul Peters, Hindawi Publishing

Linking ORCID and DataCite, Mummi Thorisson, ODIN

Using ORCID iDs to support institutional reporting systems, Thorsten Hoellrigl, Avedas

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Why I’m Now Embedding ORCID Metadata in PDFs

Posted by Brian Kelly on 28 January 2013

“Every PDF needs a title”

The day after announcing a post on Reflections on the Discussion on the Quality of Embedded Metadata in PDFs I received a tweet from @community which alerted me to a blog post on SEO Action for PDF files on the Adobe blog. The post describes an extension for use in Acrobat X Pro which automates the settings of the properties of the PDF file in accordance with guidelines which can enhance the discoverability of PDF files by Google. The guidelines, which had been published way back in August 2009, were based on experiments which demonstrated improvements in Google’s indexing of PDF files. The article’s main conclusion was that “Every PDF needs a title“:

In terms of PDF files, the blue underlined text in Google’s search results comes from one of two places. First, Google looks in the “Title” document information field. If it finds nothing, Google’s indexer tries to guess the document’s title by scanning the text on the first few pages. This usually doesn’t work, producing incorrect and improperly formatted results.

In addition to this advice, the article also suggested use of other metadata fields including author, subjects and keywords.

Metadata For Peer-Reviewed Papers

Although I ensure that I provide the correct title for my peer-reviewed papers when I create them in MS Word I was unsure whether I included the names of the co-authors or made use of other metadata fields.

Metadata fields in MS WordOn Friday 25 January 2013 I decided to update the metadata for one of my papers, “Developing A Holistic Approach For E-Learning Accessibility” which was the first paper myself, Lawrie Phipps and Elaine Swift wrote back in 2004

I added a number of tags to the paper and used the Comments field to provide the abstract. In addition the publication details were added to the Status field.

Whilst updating the metadata it occurred to me that it would be useful to include the ORCID ID for the authors as this will be less volatile than the author’s email address (one of the co-authors was based at the University of Bath when the paper was published but subsequently moved to Nottingham Trent University).

alt text for images in MS WordIn addition to the resource discovery metadata for the paper I also remembered that I should ensure that images in the paper contained appropriate alt text so that image descriptions are available to those who may make use of a screen reader. Fortunately we had done this for the paper, but I have to admit that this isn’t necessarily done for all of my research papers.

Having updated the metadata for the paper and embedded images I then created the PDF from MS Word. I noticed that the Save As PDF option in MS Word enabled a number of options to be specified, including Save As ISO-19005 (PDF/A).

As described in Wikipedia PDF/A is “an ISO-standardized version of the Portable Document Format (PDF) specialized for the digital preservation of electronic documents“. The articles goes on to explain that “PDF/A differs from PDF by omitting features ill-suited to long-term archiving, such as font linking (as opposed to font embedding)“.

Savie as PDF option in MS WordSince the digital preservation of peer-reviewed publications is important I ensured that I saved the paper in PDF/A format, using the Save As option illustrated.

Approaches to Embedded Metadata Embedded in PDFs

What practices should be used in providing the metadata to be created in the original authoring tool (MS Word, in my case) which will then be available in the PDF version of the paper? Here’s a summary of the approaches I have used:

Title: The title of the paper

Tags: My preferred tags about the content and my organisation.

Comments: The abstract of the paper, normally taken from the abstract provided in the paper.

Author: First Name Surname (ORCID: ORCID ID) e.g. Brian Kelly (ORCID: 0000-0001-5875-8744)

The title field will be obvious. The tags will reflect keywords which I feel will enhance access to the document (and I choose less than five). I am using the comments field to host the abstract for the paper. Finally the author field contains the full name followed by ORCID: ORCID ID (in brackets). I feel that this is a pragmatic approach to ensuring that the significant information which will be indexed by Google is found in the metadata fields which are available through my authoring tool (MS Word).

But could this cause problems? Might Google think my name is Mr Orcid or Mr 0000-0001-5875-8744? Might other indexing and aggregation tools have problems as I am misusing the semantics of these metadata tools? My feeling is that Google will be capable of understanding the content and it is better to have such quality metadata (which I have chosen) rather than no metadata. But are other researchers embedding ORCID IDs in PDFs? In order to answer this question I have using Google’s advanced search capability to search for “ORCID” in PDF resources across a number of domains, as summarised below.search for "ORCID" in PDFs in ac.uk domain

Domain Results Date Current Results
All 3,840 28 Jan 2013 Try it
.ac.uk   109 28 Jan 2013 Try it
bath.ac.uk       0 28 Jan 2013 Try it

These numbers are low – and when you realise that the results include PDFs which contain the string “ORCID” in the text of the pages (as illustrated) it seems clear that there is little evidence that ORCID IDs are being embedded in PDFs yet.

So before I embed ORCID IDs in my other papers I would welcome feedback on this proposal. Is it desirable to include the ORCID IDs of authors in the PDF versions of papers? If so, is the approach I have taken to be recommended to others? Or might it be desirable to provided richer structured metadata in PDF files, using the XMP (Extensible Metadata Platform) standard? But if this is felt to be desirable, how would it fit into the workflow, given that it appears difficult to persuade authors to provide metadata for their papers in any case?


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Why Every Researcher Should Sign Up For Their ORCID ID

Posted by Brian Kelly on 9 January 2013

JISC news item about ORCIDI was pleased to see the news item published by the Jisc earlier today which announced UK specialists welcome launch of ORCID as tool to identify researchers.

The news item describes how:

Jisc joins organisations from across the UK higher education network to welcome the launch of the Open Researcher and Contributor Identifier (ORCID).

and goes on to describe the benefits which ORCID can provide:

There are more academic articles being published than ever before and more authors working together. In order to be able to identify an author correctly a unique identifier is needed that can then link to each author’s publications. ORCID provides this link and if widely used would:

  • Ensure researchers get credit for their own work
  • Ensure researchers and learners looking for information will be able to find academic papers more accurately
  • Enable better management of researcher publication records, making it easier for them to create CVs, reduce form filling and improve reporting to funders
  • Create a means of linking information between institutions and systems internationally
  • Enable researchers to keep track of their own work with funders, publishers and institutions around the world.

It also provides researchers with their own ORCID. Researchers are able to control how much information it holds about them and who that is shared with. The adoption of ORCID is a solution to the current challenges of being able to search for work accurately. By researchers volunteering to adopt its usage it could improve discoverability and accurate referencing.

As described in a post which explained Why You Should Do More Than Simply Claiming Your ORCID ID I feel it is important that researchers claim their ORCID ID (I will use two words as I suspect that this will less ambiguous than ‘claiming an ORCID‘). The post gave the reasons why I feel that researchers should do more than simply claim their ORCID ID and go on to include their ORCID IDs together with the ORCID IDs of their co-authors in references to their papers. The reason I gave for doing this was to minimise the risks of losing connections with co-authors, who may have changed their affiliation and thus no longer have their original email address and institutional Web presence.

In light of the recent Announcement: UKOLN – Looking Ahead which described how the Jisc “will only provide core funding to the UKOLN Innovation Support Centre, up to July 2013 but not beyond” there will clearly be a need for myself and my colleagues to minimise the risks of losing the connections with our research outputs. Since the first bullet point of the benefits which ORCID can provide is to:

Ensure researchers get credit for their own work

it would appear that claiming an ORCID ID should be a priority for researchers whose position in their host institution is uncertain. But doesn’t this apply to everyone? From one perspective this might be relevant in light of funding uncertainties in the sector which are compounded by last month’s announcement of the “Huge Drop in Students Starting University“. But beyond the current economic situation, every researcher will, at some stage, leave their host institution (whether to take up a new post elsewhere, retirement, redundancy or death in service).

It would appear that every researcher who wishes to ensure that they get credit for their own work, and can ensure that such credit can be managed when they leave their current institution should benefit from claiming an ORCID ID. As described in the post claiming an ORCID ID “is a painless exercise, taking about 30 seconds to complete” so this is something which all researchers should be able to do.

In the Jisc news item Neil Jacobs, programme director, Jisc commented: “We recognise that this is only the start and that work needs to be done to implement ORCID in the UK. However, we have a solid beginning and we look forward to working with our partners across the sector to build on it.

As is clear from the ORCID Knowledge base many suggestions have been made on ways in which the service can be enhanced. But the simplest action lies in the hands of the individual researchers: sign up for an ORCID ID!


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Why You Should Do More Than Simply Claiming Your ORCID ID

Posted by Brian Kelly on 19 November 2012

Background to ORCID

Last week the SpotOn London 2012 conference (#solo12) included a session entitled ORCID – Why Do We Need a Unique Researcher ID? As described in the abstract for the session:

Open Researcher & Contributor ID (ORCID) provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher. Through integration with key research workflows and other identifiers, ORCID supports automated linkages between you and your professional activities, ensuring that your work is recognized. The ORCID service launched in October 2012 and in this hands-on workshop we will demonstrate the different tools that already use the ORCID identifier, from manuscript submission to altmetrics for your publications. The focus will be on working with these tools so that at the end of the workshop you will have registered for your personal ORCID (if you didn’t have one already), started creating your ORCID record, and explored cool ways to use your ORCID to connect your research back to you. Wide usage and adoption of a researcher naming standard is a key component of effective research communication. Such a standard is fundamental to improving data quality and system interoperability, and ultimately will reduce the amount of time individuals spend maintaining their professional record—freeing time for research itself.

As described in a recent post on Observing Growth In Popularity of ORCID: An SEO Analysis we can already observe take-up in use of ORCID since its launch last month.

Claiming an ORCID ID

Shortly after the launch I claimed my ORCID ID: 0000-0001-5875-8744. As suggested on the ORCID home page this is a painless exercise, taking about 30 seconds to complete.

I then added addition information including details of my research papers. Citation information for my papers were added automatically once I had associated my ORCID ID with my Scopus account. I then had to individually change the visibility of these items from Private to Public in order that the records were including in the public display of my ORCID profile.

The final thing I did was to add links to my key Web resources, including the UKOLN Web site, my UK Web Focus blog and my LinkedIn profile.

If you a researcher and have published peer-reviewed papers I would recommend claiming of your ORCID ID. But beyond investing 30 seconds in claiming the ID I would also suggest that you should associate your ORCID ID with your papers and then make them public (note it has been suggested that the display should be public by default). I would also recommend that your ORCID record should provide links so that others can find out more about you and your research activities, including your current contact details.

Using An ORCID Record

Maintaining Links, As Author Affiliations Changes

I would suggest, however, that researchers should do more than simply claim their ORCID ID. I recently realised recently that I was in danger of losing contact with people I have co-authored papers with since writing my first peer-reviewed paper back in 1999. This has always been a danger in light of the turn-over in affiliations for those working as researchers and will become even more relevant in light of cutbacks in higher education.

I have therefore started to make contact with co-authors and have invited them to claim their ORCID ID. I will include this information in citation records which I maintain. As an example the papers tab on this blog contains details of papers I have published and includes links to further information for each of the papers.

I have recently begun updating the citation details with links to the ORCID ID for my co-authors when I have been notified of their ORCID ID.

An example for the paper on A Challenge to Web Accessibility Metrics and Guidelines: Putting People and Processes First is illustrated, for which ORCID IDs for three of the four authors are available.

In this case the co-authors are still based at same institution. However for a paper on Developing Countries; Developing Experiences: Approaches to Accessibility for the Real World written by three of the four same authors, Sarah Lewthwaite was at the time based at the University of Nottingham. The page containing the citation information has Sarah’s institutional details from when the paper was published (and the paper itself will have the email details for this institution which will no longer work). However the ORCID ID will continue to be valid, and can be updated with any new organisational details and email address.

Supporting Resource Discovery

Since claiming my ORCID ID I have found that a Google search for ‘Brian Kelly ORCID includes my ORCID record in the first page of results, as illustrated. And whilst finding the page probably reflects a personalised view of my Google search results, it did occur to my that a search for ‘researcher’s name ORCID’ may become a quick way of finding research publications for an individual. Since my initial experiments tended to find results related to the Orcid flower I realised that use of ‘ORCID ID’ may provide a useful disambiguation term. I have therefore decided to use this structure in my Web resources, even if pedants point out the redundancy in use of ‘ID’ since ORCID stands for Open Researcher & Contributor ID. After all, we talk about the Sahara Desert even though Sahara means desert.

If a search for ‘name ORCID ID’ becomes a means of helping to find details for a researcher’s publication record might it also be useful for finding the papers themselves?

As illustrated, a Google search for ‘A Challenge to Web Accessibility Metrics and Guidelines: Putting People and Processes First finds the item in the institutional repository, an article posted on this blog and, in third place, the information provided in my ORCID record.

Although it should again be mentioned that these findings may be skewed by Google personalisation features (I was logged into Google when carrying out the search and used the PC in my office) the point to be made is that content held in ORCID will be found by Google.

In addition, the visibility of the ORCID Web site is likely to be enhanced as more people link to ORCID from their Web sites, especially high-ranking Web sites. This may mean that the early adopters who claim an ORCID ID in its early stages of development will gain benefits through their peers finding their published research papers – something likely to be of particularly important within the UK higher education sector in the run-up to REF 2014.

Why would you not claim your ORCID ID? Why would you not make use of your ORCID record as I have suggested? And if any of my co-authors read this post, feel free to get in touch and let me have details of your ORCID ID.


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