The personal research portal: web 2.0 driven individual commitment with open access for development
Type of work: Communication
Categories:Digital Literacy | Knowledge Management | Social Media & Social Software | Usage & Uptake
There is unchallenged evidence that both researchers and research interests in developing countries are underrepresented in mainstream academic publishing systems. Reasons are many but publishing costs, research infrastructure financing and the vicious circle of researcher invisibility are among the most mentioned. Efforts have been made to mitigate this situation, being open access to scholarly literature – open access journals, self-archiving in institutional repositories – an increasingly common and successful approach.
It is our opinion that focus has been put on institutional initiatives, but the concept and tools around the web 2.0 seem to bring clear opportunities so that researchers, acting as individuals, can also contribute, to build a broader personal presence on the Internet and a better diffusion for their work, interests and publications.
By using a mesh of social software applications, we here propose the concept of the Personal Research Portal as a means to create a digital identity for the researcher – tied to his digital public notebook and personal repository – and a virtual network of colleagues working in the same field. Complementary to formal publishing or taking part in congresses, the Personal Research Portal would be a knowledge management system that would enhance reading, storing and creating at both the private and public levels, helping to bridge the academic digital divide.