With an overwhelmingly large number of researchers publishing important work annually, it might seem impossible to make an impact in your field and be seen by fellow researchers. However, there are tools that are created with the purpose of connecting scholars from the same field and establishing a network of like-minded researchers. Such websites help researchers post their work and share their publications with others in the field, which leads to them reaching the relevant people and increasing the impact of their work. One such platform is Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID).
ORCID is an “open, non-profit, community-driven initiative” that provides a network for people that participate in research and scholarship. The platform specifically allows for uniquely identified contributions that are across different disciplines and fields, countries and time periods (Lyrasis, n.d.b). ORCID also allows you to specifically identify yourself with your work. This might seem unimportant at first, but when researchers look back at their work, their names seem to appear in many different variations. For example, Joseph Visconto may appear as J.M. Visconto or J Visconto. ORCID allows you to reliably connect your publications and contributions with your name and its variations (Cambridge University Press, n.d.).
ORCID specifically establishes these connections using three main services:
1) The ORCID ID: A unique, digital identifier that is free of charge for all researchers and scholars on the platform
2) An ORCID record of previous work and contributions that is connected to the ORCID ID
3) Application Programming Interfaces (APIs): This program, as well as other services that support communities of researchers on the platform, enable interoperability that allows members and organizations to allow connections to their affiliations and contributions (Lyrasis, n.d.b).
ORCID also allows you to showcase more than just your publications. Researchers have used the platform’s profile page to collect and display the activities that they have engaged in throughout their careers. For example, an ORCID profile page can show institutions where a researcher has worked, the funding or grants they have received, and any peer reviews contributed. This makes an ORCID profile a great way to showcase your career’s contributions to apply for future grant funding or research positions (Cambridge University Press, n.d.). This is especially helpful given the fact that over 130 organizations in the US, 70+ publishers, many funders, and over 8 million researchers around the world use ORCID (Lyrasis, n.d.a).
There are three key benefits to using ORCID’s services:
1) Discoverability and Visibility: By allowing other scholars to easily find the work you have authored and contributed to, ORCID allows reliable researcher connections that will lead to future collaborations.
2) Convenience: As more organizations and institutions use ORCID, providing your unique ORCID ID will allow them to view your career’s work and activities without you having to retype your information numerous times.
3) Keeping Track: An ORCID profile is an ideal place to keep all your career’s contributions in one spot while updating it regularly as you contribute more to your field (Cambridge University Press, n.d.).
How Do I Get an ORCID ID?
Getting an ORCID ID is a fairly simple process that only takes minutes. All one needs to do is register through the ORCID website to get a unique ORCID identifier. Then, you would enhance your ORCID profile by adding your professional information and linking it to other platforms, such as Scopus and LinkedIn. Now, you would be able to use your ORCID identifier for any publications you submit, grants you apply for, as additional hyperlinks on a webpage, and anywhere else to ensure that you get credit for your work (Cambridge University Press, n.d.).
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