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*metrics – MEasuring The Reliability and perceptions of Indicators for interactions with sCientific productS

On 1 January 2017 the DFG-funded project *metrics - MEasuring The Reliability and Perceptions of Indicators for interactions with sCientific productS has been launched. The partners (Göttingen State and University Library (SUB Göttingen), ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, GESIS Leibniz-Institute for the Social Sciences and Verbundzentrale des gemeinsamen Bibliotheksverbunds (VZG) - common library network of seven German federal states) discussed the objectives and activities for the next two years in a kick-off meeting on 1 and 2 February 2017 in Göttingen.


The main objective of the *metrics – MEasuring The Reliability and perceptions of Indicators for interactions with sCientific productS project is to develop a deeper understanding of *metrics (aka altmetrics / social media metrics), in terms of their general significance and their perception amongst stakeholders. Key considerations will include the quality of *metrics’ underlying data (in terms of validity and reliability), the historical context within which *metrics arose, as well as their ability to adequately assess scientific outputs against the background of disciplinary specificities. The project’s findings will benefit *metrics users and will contribute to the greater openness and transparency of *metrics initiatives.


During the two-year-term, partners will conduct explorative user and usage studies. Social media platforms will be evaluated and the technical foundations of *metrics will be assessed. This work will be supported by a scientific committee and accompanied by community building and public relations activities, the creation of new links with national and international initiatives (e.g. Confederation of Open Access Repositories - COAR, National Information Standards Organisation - NISO) and the establishment of a *metrics information platform.

Project Partners will be involved in the following work packages:

  • Capture the status quo and exploratory user- and usage studies: The social media services that are popular in science, their users and the usage of these services are evaluated by means of exploratory studies and recorded in cooperation with the scientific community in a social media registry. Based on the considered functional and subject-related specifications the project aims to give recommendations for standardization.
  • Technology analysis for the collection and provision of *metrics: Based on the data of the exploratory studies, the existing *metrics aggregation software will be evaluated in order to provide the most complete data base possible. After technical adjustments have been made, the *metrics should be provided and the degree of coverage and the rating of the aggregators should be tested as well as the integration by content partners (proof-of-concept).
  • Community networking and project management: Besides the project management, which will be accomplished in this work package the results of the project will be communicated to the national and international library, repository and *metrics community via the bilingual (german/english) information platform *metrics. In the beginning and at the end of the project, the *metrics topic will be presented in workshops to interested members of libraries, research institutions and scientific communities to gather feedback.

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