The Comfort Pursuit

‘Tech 4’ Academic Networking: Academia.edu

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Photo by Luke Chesser, sourced from Unsplash

Similarly to ResearchGate,  Academia.edu has as its main purpose to facilitate the exchange of papers and research informationI discovered Academia.edu by chance when searching for a paper on Google Scholar which linked to the researcher’s profile on Academia.edu. I had to subscribe to have access to the paper, so I did.

Despite being pro open access and encouraging researchers to share their articles, last December many papers made available on Academia.edu got a takedown notice from Elsevier. The reason seems obvious: violation of copyright agreement.

We issue takedown notices from time to time when the final version of published journal articles is posted on unauthorized public websites. (Elsevier Website)

If compared to ResearchGate I find some advantages in Academia.edu such as the possibility of sharing talks, teaching documents, conference presentations, thesis chapters, blogs and websites articles, and of making your CV available. As a disadvantage it does not seem to be as popular as ResearchGate for discussing research ideas and therefore it is more limited for networking.

I mentioned in last week’s Tech4 article that depending on where you are in the world one or the other platform might be more used and therefore more useful for networking. From my experience it seems that in New Zealand researchers use more ResearchGate, and some have their account active making part in discussions. I also have noticed Academia.edu is more popular than ResearchGate in Brazil and some Spanish speaking countries, but overall it is less active. I haven’t seen many researches feeding discussions on Academia.edu.

Academic production is a slow process – fair enough – and it is difficult to keep academic profiles ‘active’ just based on publications. It doesn’t seem enough to ‘follow’ researchers and perhaps the way to keep these platforms interesting is to focus on discussions, so at this stage ResearchGate does sound more appealing to me. I still use both because I am interested in researches being developed in my home country as well as in the English speaking world, so I always search on both websites.

Do you use any academic networking website? Which is your favourite?

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Further reading:

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