Helping SU Colleges and Institutes Demonstrate Their Impact
Republished from © 2023 Elsevier B.V.
By Emily Hart, Liaison Librarian and Research Impact Lead at Syracuse University Libraries
Since 2020, the Research Impact Team at Syracuse University Libraries has been making great strides toward improving the research reputation of Syracuse University and supporting its research enterprise. Inspired by the example of the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, the Research Impact Team has developed a series of ‘use cases’ designed to illustrate a deep understanding of research impact, metrics and reporting needs across campus. Here is the first use case in a series.
A major focus for SU is interdisciplinary research, and over the past few years SU has opened several big centers and institutes whose research groups draw on faculty from multiple university departments and colleges; for example, the BioInspired Institute and the Aging Studies Institute. As these groups are both new and diverse, finding effective ways to track and report on their impact is complex, resulting in their faculty and research development professionals seeking the Research Impact Team’s support.
Questions they ask the team include:
- What are we producing?
- What are we excelling at?
- What attention does our work receive?
- Who are our internal and external collaborators?
They are interested in metrics and in setting up profiles at the group level to help them share their unique stories and broader impact. Because they are new, they do not have a way to look at their outputs and activities in a cohesive way, especially given the number of departments involved and the different processes they use to track research activities. And they may not have the resources and support staff to monitor those activities. That is where the Libraries can help.
The Research Impact Team uses a suite of tools to support these institutes, including Scopus and Pure. The team has created custom groups for the researchers in Pure, which allow the team to track the institutes’ performance, and then the team uses the Pure reporting module to answer questions about their research activities. One thing the researchers often want to know is who they are collaborating with across the university and externally – for example, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry or Upstate Medical University. Faculty from these colleges sit in the University’s institutes and the team needs to be able to report on their contributions. So, in addition to using the research institute instances set up in Pure, the team might also pull data from Scopus on those external researchers and combine the datasets.
For more information or to inquire about support from the Research Impact Team, email firstname.lastname@example.org.