What is Altmetric?

Researchers, institutions and funders are increasingly concerned about the impact of their work and return on their investment.

Altmetric_rgb The company Altmetric LLP tracks the online attention surrounding a research output and provides an additional indicator of the impact of scholarly publications. They do this by collecting article level metrics and the online conversations around research papers by tracking a selection of online indicators (both scholarly and nonscholarly) to give a measurement of digital impact and reach. “Mentions” that contain links to any version of the same paper are picked up and collated. The result is the Altmetric attention score, which is the attention gathered from these sources and captured in a round, colorful badge, often called a “donut”. Altmetric badges are now on the article level for all Karger journals on www.karger.com.

General background for alternative metrics

The traditional methods of counting citations and downloads to measure impact are no longer sufficient in measuring the broader scope of research output, particularly with regard to its impact beyond research communities. As a result, there has been a desire in the scholarly community to gain a better understanding of the reach and attention a paper receives beyond academia.
“Altmetrics”, or alternative metrics, have evolved to help answer those questions by tracking and collating mentions and shares of academic research papers and other outputs (such as datasets) across traditional and social media outlets, blogs, public policy documents, postpublication peer-review forums, and online reference managers.

Altmetric Attention Score

The score is a quantitative measure of the attention that a scholarly article has received. It is derived from 3 main factors:
Volume: The score for an article rises as more people mention it
Sources: Each category of mention contributes a different base amount to the final score
Authors: How often the author of each mention talks about scholarly articles influences the contribution of the mention

On the Karger platform, the overall score for each article is displayed in the Article Tools section in the top right corner of the Abstract page:

Abstract Page

Clicking on the Altmetric badge will bring you to the article details page, which will show you each mention of the paper. The ring-shaped donut visualization will differ in color depending on what sources the article has mentions from – blue for Twitter, yellow for blogs, red for mainstream media sources, etc.

article details page

How does Altmetric benefit me?

The Altmetric data available for journal articles allows you to:
  • See the attention that each article is receiving from nontraditional sources, including:
    – Mainstream and social media
    – Published policy documents
    – Online reference managers
    – Postpublication peer-review forums
  • Explore the conversations surrounding the content
  • Identify recent papers your peers think are interesting

What can I do with this data?

Altmetric can be useful to researchers who would like to build their online presence, demonstrate the broader impacts of their work, and increase their chances of receiving grant funding. To make the most of the data around your articles you might like to:
  • Use the Altmetric details page to identify coverage and wider dissemination of your research that you can evidence in CVs or funding applications
  • See who is talking about your research – identify potential new collaborators and build relationships with key influencers
  • Monitor other research in your field, and know how it has been received amongst a broader audience
  • Manage your online reputation – respond to commentary about your work and actively engage in the conversation

Missing mentions

If you spot any mentions missing for a paper, please use this form to report this to Altmetric, who will review your suggestions and add them where applicable. You can find more information about why some mentions may not have been picked up here.
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