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Announcing our New, Improved Support System!
ORCID is maturing out of our start-up phase. As we grow, we need to ensure the scalability of our operations; that’s why we decided to move to another help desk system that better supports our continued growth, and enables us to meet our community’s requirements and to optimize your experience.
In 2017, we handled 30,732 tickets from users and members. We’ve already exceeded that volume this year: we’ve answered over 31,000 tickets by the end of August 2018. We do our best to answer all tickets within two business days. As you can see from the chart below (for 2018 to date), we mostly succeed, thanks to the hard work of a small team of colleagues.
However, with our continued growth in membership (expected to reach over 1,000 shortly) and users (now well over 5.2 million), we need to make some changes in our support system to continue to provide you with the support you need.
For the past few months, I’ve been leading a project to research, evaluate, and implement a new support system, and I’m excited to say that we have completed the transition! I want to thank and recognize all the hard work of my ORCID colleagues, who helped to make this transition possible to create a better experience for you.
Our new system, which went live on September 14, has a number of benefits, including support for multiple languages (which we will be rolling out over the coming months), a better user interface, and improved reporting for making smarter decisions so that we can more easily do what is best for our community, so improving our users’ and members’ satisfaction.
The new system will also allow us to spread the responsibility for answering tickets across more staff, with all members of our newly formed global Engagement Team now responsible for tickets from their own members. Our dedicated User Support Specialist will continue to handle most user tickets, again with support from all Engagement Team members.
Unfortunately, one downside of the transition is that the new system is unable to support URL redirects, meaning that any links to our old Knowledge Base articles no longer work. Anyone using the old links will be taken to one of two pages -- see the screenshot below. We have also created a spreadsheet mapping the old page links to the new ones, so that you can update your web pages accordingly.
We look forward to continuing to provide you with great service in the months and years to come!
Recognizing Reviews for Grant Applications Using ORCID - An Interview with Jason Gush, Royal Society Te Apārangi
Peer review is central to many key research workflows: publications, grant applications, promotion and tenure applications, conference submissions, and more. We are delighted that ORCID member Royal Society Te Apārangi is planning to use ORCID to recognize peer review service for Marsden Fund panel reviewers. Learn more about their progress in this interview with Jason Gush, their Programme Manager for Insights & Evaluation, and watch for more updates in the coming months.
First, please can you tell us a bit about the Royal Society Te Apārangi and the Marsden Fund, and your current integration of ORCID via the New Zealand ORCID Hub?
The Royal Society Te Apārangi is a 150-year old non-governmental organization empowered under an Act of Parliament and responsible for supporting and encouraging scholarship in the sciences and humanities, and encouraging an appreciation and awareness of the same in the New Zealand public. As part of these responsibilities, we’re the home for New Zealand’s national academy, distribute medals and awards for research excellence, administer the New Zealand Journal titles, and act as a fund administrator for government, as well as carrying out a range of promotion, education, and expert advice activities.
The Marsden Fund is the largest of the funds we administer and has been in operation for 24 years. It is now somewhat novel, being both entirely for investigator-initiated research and covering the full gamut of research from the humanities through social sciences, the life sciences, physical sciences, to mathematics and the information sciences. With an annual funding round and success rates typically around 10%, getting a Marsden grant is regarded as carrying a fair degree of prestige.
The Society has had the pleasure of being the lead agency for the New Zealand ORCID Consortium since the Consortium’s launch in 2016. Supported by our government, the consortium is ORCID’s most organizationally diverse and has a goal of representing all of New Zealand’s publicly-funded researchers. The Consortium also supported the development of the New Zealand ORCID Hub to enable our diverse members to interact with ORCID. The Hub is a web application with a simple user interface that allows organizations to read from and write to ORCID records with the record holder’s permission. At present, we are using the Hub to assert affiliations for our staff, funding for grant holders, and have just started looking into how we can properly represent the peer review that’s integral to so much of our operation.
What sort of technical work did the Society undertake to enable peer review recognition in the Hub?
Peer review represented a simple extension of the Hub’s functionality. The main complication was the creation of tools to manage the group id referenced in an ORCID peer review. We’re very fortunate to have an able and dedicated development team at the University of Auckland. Together, Radomirs Cirskis and Roshan Pawar got this up and running with v4 of the Hub which launched in May.
We’re excited that the Royal Society Te Apārangi is the first ORCID member to recognize review contributions for funding. What sort of reviews will be recognized?
The Fund sees around 1,200 expressions of interest a year across a broad range of disciplines. To make assessment practical, the Fund is structured into 10 discipline-based panels. Each panel assesses approximately 120 expressions of interest and selects around 24 to invite to submit a full proposal. Those 24 proposals are sent to a target of three (almost exclusively) international referees for comment. The panels meet again to consider the proposals, referee comments, and the investigator rebuttals, to select the 12 that will be successful.
With referees currently anonymous, the review contributions that we are most interested and able to assert is the service performed by the panellists.
By making peer review recognition available to Marsden Fund Panelists, what are you hoping to accomplish, and what challenges have you faced?
Peer review is such an important part of our processes, so we’re after a clear, clean, and authoritative way of unambiguously asserting that a particular individual has given this service. We’re hoping this is of value to panelists. Given that we’re often approached to confirm that they have served on a panel for other assessment processes, we want to give panelists the ability to share this information themselves.
The socialization of asserting what is already public information therefore is expected to be trivial. Instead, our biggest challenge has been attempting to fit this role into ORCID’s model representation of peer review. Conversely, that model would fit relatively nicely were the Fund, or indeed any of the Society’s processes, to offer referees the opportunity to be open about their identity; however, that is definitely not the case at present.
What approaches did you consider, for example, in terms of recognizing peer reviews versus service affiliation?
Our initial thoughts were to assert these roles in the peer review section of the panelist’s ORCID record, both because we thought we could make it work and, with v2.1 of the ORCID API, this was the only game in town. However, getting to grips with the peer review model showed that this wasn’t really suited to what we wanted to assert, i.e. where an identifiable work is the subject of an identifiable review. After discussions with the ORCID team, we’ve decided instead to wait for v3.0’s service affiliations.
What has the reaction been so far from researchers about the option to have their review work for the Society recognized in their ORCID record?
It is too soon to say as it’s still early days yet. Part of pursuing this was seeking the approval of the Marsden Fund Council which governs the fund, and they have been supportive of both this activity and of funding assertions in ORCID.
What challenges did being the first to work on recognizing peer review in funding pose, and what advice would you give other funders that would like to link and recognize peer review?
Peer review is the newest of the sections of the ORCID record, and, at least in v2.1, is solidly geared around the concept of a reviewer composing a review for a subject on behalf of a review group. As a funder, the challenges were that the subject must be one of ORCID’s work types, while review groups can be one of: publisher; institution; journal; conference; newspaper; newsletter; magazine; or peer review service. Neither really suits a funding organization, where the subject would not be a work but a grant, proposal, or application. The fact that so much of contestable funding review is blinded also makes the strict application of ORCID’s peer review model impractical for us at the moment.
If the Society moved toward open review, or at least more open than currently, the peer review approach would be worth revisiting. For other funders, once ORCID has subject types and organization types which fit, then it is definitely possible if they’re practicing open review; however, service affiliations are looking to be a much more universally applicable approach in the interim.
Looking ahead, is peer review recognition a part of the ORCID roadmap for other New Zealand members using the ORCID Hub?
All major public research funders in New Zealand are part of our consortium, and this is something that they can pursue using the Hub. I’d definitely hope to see this kind of recognition extended to our other funders given the value that we receive from peer reviewers’ service.
What’s new with peer review on ORCID
ORCID has provided peer review functionality for going on three years. Peer review recognition is part of our broader commitment to improve recognition for all research contributions. It’s something that reviewers feel strongly about too. In Publons’ recently published 2018 Global State of Peer Review survey, 85% of respondents indicated that peer review contributions should be both required and recognized by their institutions; and 83% indicated that greater recognition and career incentives for peer review would have a positive effect on the community.
We continue to improve our peer review functionality based on your feedback. Review activities now group in an ORCID record based on a shared group ID and review identifier, much as works do. If your organization asserts reviews directly on ORCID records and also provides review history to other parties, such as review recognition services, you can share the group ID and review identifier you use to ensure that the review correctly groups on the ORCID record.
A new way to recognize review service
In 2017, we called on the ORCID community to help us expand our affiliations section to better encompass the range of professional activities researchers engage in. The new affiliations are being launched this month in the ORCID record interface and will also be available to ORCID member organizations testing the first release candidate of our API 3.0.
Service, one of the six new affiliations on the ORCID record, recognizes any donation of a researcher’s time, time, money, or other resources to an organization or community, including voluntary work such as being a review editor or participating in a review panel. It can be used in combination with peer review activity to provide a more complete recognition of the total review contribution of a researcher.
Each service affiliation requires information about the service organization, including its organization identifier; and information about the duration of service, including the date it started. We also recommend adding more detail about the organization, such as the name of the journal or panel where the review service was performed, and the role of the reviewer or their title, for example Review Editor or Review Committee Chair.
Users will be able to add information themselves about their service to an organization as a reviewer, review editor, and more, directly in their ORCID record. ORCID member organizations testing API 3.0 will be able to add these service affiliations with their researchers’ permission.
Uptake in peer review on ORCID
Now that our API 2.0 is in full use,all ORCID members are able to use the peer review functionality; usage has increased significantly as a result. More than 25 thousand ORCID records now have at least one peer review -- a 133% increase over 2017. And more than 535,500 peer reviews have now been asserted on ORCID records, a 266% increase over the 148,100 reviews posted in 2017. Publons continue to be responsible for the vast majority (512,700), but assertions by other organizations are increasing rapidly. See our chart below for more details and the statistics page for the latest updates:
Number of iDs with peer reviews
Number of peer review items
Visible to everyone
Visible to trusted parties
Visible to only the user
Number of peer review groups
Number of unique DOIs
Top five organizations posting
peer reviews (number of reviews posted)
American Geophysical Union (4,365)
The Society for Neuroscience (257)
American Geophysical Union (7,792)
The Society for Neuroscience (490)
Organizations currently asserting reviews directly are predominately using third-party systems, with an even split between F1000’s Open Research platform and eJournalPress. Other systems which currently support peer review assertions directly to ORCID records include Aries Systems’ Editorial Manager and River Valley Technologies’ ReView.
We are delighted to see our community making more use of our peer review functionality and hope to see uptake continue to increase in the coming months and years.
Characterizing the Adoption of ORCID iDs
Adoption of ORCID is increasing among institutions, publishers, and funders, as well as researchers – there are now over five million registered users. However, although the number of users is growing steadily, there is a danger that researchers sign up for an ORCID iD, but then fail to make best use of it and of the associated record. Many institutions therefore run advocacy programs and work hard to increase the benefits that ORCID adoption brings their researchers.
Under their Library & Information Science Research Grants scheme, OCLC and ALISE have funded a project at the University of St. Andrews to research ORCID iD uptake and adoption. The Characterizing the Adoption of ORCID iDs project launched in March 2018 and runs through to February 2019. It is based on a pilot study carried out in 2017 that investigated the adoption and use of ORCID iDs by researchers at the University of St. Andrews and identified key use cases and new avenues for advocacy.
Looking for case study institutions
The OCLC/ALISE project is currently conducting a survey at three case study organizations and is looking for up to five further case study institutions to participate, by disseminating a 10-minute online survey of all staff and research students at your institution.
What are the benefits for organizations taking part?
You get a ready-made and tested methodology to run the survey at your institution.
The survey and analysis can be tailored to your institution.
The survey results can help you with either planning ORCID-related advocacy activities or with evaluating them.
By collecting data that are comparable to other institutions, you will also be able to see how ORCID iD advocacy, adoption and usage at your institution compares to that at other institutions.
The project can also serve as a mechanism for exchanging information about good practice between institutions.
Where will the results be reported?
The project will present its findings as a final report at presentations in various venues such as the 2019 ALISE Annual Conference. The datasets generated will be published in a suitable repository under a Creative Commons license.
How to get involved
If your institution is interested in participating – or if you’d just like to learn more – please contact Alex at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrating #PeerReviewWeek18 at ORCID!
Welcome to the fourth Peer Review Week, which runs from September 10-14. As one of the founding organizations of this annual event in honor of peer review, we are delighted to announce a few of our own celebrations, which we hope you'll enjoy!
The theme of this year's Peer Review Week is Diversity in Review. We welcome all to join the celebrations, and especially organizations outside the publishing community. If you are affiliated with a research funder, a research institution, or other organization, please join us in celebrating how you use and recognize peer review!
This year we're holding two webinars featuring an overview of ORCID’s peer review functionality plus regional community use cases. Our webinar for the Americas/Europe/Middle East/Africa regions kicked off the week. Held today, September 10, we welcomed Liz Allen of F1000, Stephanie Dawson of ScienceOpen, and Joris van Rossum of Digital Science and Brigitte Shull of Cambridge University Press from the Blockchain Peer Review Project to discuss reviews in their community -- we will share the slides and recording later this week. Our webinar for the Asia-Pacific region ends the week. Held September 14, we welcome Jason Gush of the Royal Society Te Apārangi, Kerry Kroffe of PLOS, and Andrew Harrison of Publons to share how they have implemented -- or are planning to implement -- peer review. Registration is free and we strongly encourage you to attend if you're interested in recognizing your reviewers' contributions by connecting their review activities to their ORCID records. We’ll also share the recordings afterwards.
Finally, we will be celebrating Peer Review Week with a series of blog posts: an update on ORCID's peer review functionality and use; an interview with the Royal Society Te Apārangi on their experience implementing peer review; and more!
Need additional resources to jazz up your own Peer Review Week celebrations? This year's Peer Review Week Organizing Committee, including ORCID, has created some great Peer Review Week Event In A Box resources for you to use and adapt. And if you haven't yet done so, please share your plans so that they can be included on the PRW calendar.
As well as the celebrations here at ORCID, many other individuals and organizations globally have organized events and activities for #PeerReviewWeek18, including several ORCID members. Check out this list for more information - and we hope you'll join in by following @PeerRevWeek and the hashtags #PeerReviewWeek18, and #PeerRevDiversityInclusion.