Meeting researchers at their point of need to accelerate discovery [Podcast]

Tune in to learn how discovery platforms can best meet the needs of researchers during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Improving the researcher experience is crucial to accelerating output and impact. However, researchers’ needs and pain points are changing right across the research workflow.

In this episode of our Future of Research podcast, we discuss how the global pandemic and changing nature of research has impacted scholars across all career stages and disciplines. We ask Dr. Rob Poolman, Vice President of the Web of Science™ product platform, and Nina Chang, Web of Science Product Manager, what this means for discovery platforms today, and how the Web of Science is evolving to meet these challenges.

Dr. Poolman and Nina Chang discuss how research has become more interdisciplinary over the years. This means academics not only need to keep abreast of the new research published in their field, but also access to the foundational papers in adjacent topics that they’re less familiar with.

This is one of the greatest strengths [of the Web of Science]: our careful selection policy that ensures we keep an eye on all the important research that’s being published in the scholarly ecosystem. We also marry that with our times cited count, which helps the researcher have a very easy way to manage the information overload.” 

– Nina Chang

The pair also explain how the COVID-19 outbreak has brought a new level of transparency to the scientific process and accelerated the timeliness of information. This has both benefits and hurdles for the research community as a whole, but has put early-career researchers in a particularly vulnerable position.

General work stoppage has thrown a tremendous wrench at early-career researchers in terms of their ability to establish themselves. […] A lot of these researchers are on specific, time-boxed projects and yet they find themselves unable to go to the lab because everything is under lockdown. There are instances where funders are extending the timelines of grants, but researchers might need to choose between getting paid and extending their grant.” 

– Nina Chang

Listen in as Dr. Poolman and Nina Chang discuss the key role of discovery platforms in this changing research landscape. They say a big part of delivering support and accelerating research is ensuring comprehensive and reliable content. This is especially when it comes to new content, like preprints. It’s also about improving the lines of communication between different groups of researchers working on the same topic, and providing a personalized and proactive user experience with seamless connectivity between products.

Researchers need and want to be as efficient as possible when using discovery platforms like the Web of Science[…]. For us, that means flipping the user experience from being reactive to proactive, and getting data and relevant content to researchers as quickly as possible to maximize the use of time.” 

– Dr. Poolman

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View our Future of Research lineup

Our new podcast series explores the trends impacting the global research landscape. We also discuss how the Web of Science can help you successfully navigate them. Our next episode, “Demonstrating real-world outcomes and the future of research evaluation” looks at the current challenges research evaluators face. You will learn best practices for measuring the real-world outcomes of research. In addition, we also reveal new indicators and predictive methodologies on the horizon. Learn more about our podcast lineup here.