Scopus Now Features Mendeley Readership Stats!


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A new feature on Scopus now shows users what the Mendeley readership statistics are for a specific article. The beta version has just gone live last week, and now it’s possible not only to see how many times a paper has been downloaded to a user’s Mendeley library, but also to view a handy breakdown by demographics such as what discipline those researchers belong to, what their academic status is, and their country of origin.

These stats will automatically show up on the Scopus Documents Details pages if at least one Mendeley user has saved the document to their library, together with a link back to the record on Mendeley (if not, then nothing will show up for that document, similar to the way that the Scopus widget works).

Since 2012, Scopus has shown information, but the added Mendeley demographic breakdown adds another layer to that, giving a much more comprehensive view of an article’s impact, available instantly at a glance.  This means that when trawling through hundreds of abstracts (something that as a PhD student I have to do on a regular basis, so I feel your pain) you can quickly gauge which papers might be most relevant by seeing how many colleagues in your discipline have the document in their Mendeley library.

As well as saving you time, the feature enhances citation metrics because Mendeley readership demonstrates alternative types of academic influence. Research has shown some evidence supporting the fact that Mendeley readership counts correlate to some extent with future citations. On the other hand, the most read article on Mendeley, “How to choose a good scientific problem” (Alon, 2009), with nearly 55 thousand Mendeley readers, only has 5 citations on Scopus. It’s therefore not too unreasonable to think that you’d be in a much better position to make an informed decision about that paper’s impact if given both types of readership stats rather than just the one!



More details are available on the Scopus Blog  and you can also email the Scopus team with your feedback!

Free access to Science Direct for early career researchers

Research is not always a linear path, especially in a market squeezed by shrinking grant availability, changing job paths, and fewer permanent career positions.

Compounding the issue for early career researchers between positions is the lack of access to resources like current and archived research.

Elsevier is seeking to alleviate the pressures for between-jobs researchers by continuing a program to help early career researchers who are between positions stay up-to-date on their respective fields. The Postdoc Free Access Program grants complimentary access to books and journals on ScienceDirect for up to six months.

More details from Elsevier:

Post-Doc Free Access Programme: Back by popular demand.

Stay current in your field–even in an uncertain job market

In November 2012 and again in June 2013 we launched a programme to support young scholars in between jobs or looking for their first postdoctoral position. Applicants who qualified were granted up to 6 months free access to all our journals and books on ScienceDirect and able to use this access to work on grant applications and research project.

We were delighted with the response we got from the community; both from post-doctoral organisations who forwarded the application form link and from researchers who qualified for the free access.

One of the recipients of the 2012 program, Daniele Vergara of the University of Salento in Italy, wrote: “As a postdoc fellow in biological sciences, this program [gave] me the chance to maintain a vital scientific network, to read papers and write grants. In the absence of help from government and local institutions, the Elsevier program was a great experience, an innovative way to support postdocs during their research career.”

As the international economic situation continues to be challenging for scientists starting their career, we have decided to bring back this program. In order to give even more people the option to apply we have extended the application period to 7 months.

How to get the Free Access Passport

To qualify, candidates must complete a form verifying their credentials by September 30, 2014. Once approved, they will receive a personal code allowing access to ScienceDirect.

Qualifying criteria are:

  • Postdoctoral researchers who have received their PhD within in the past five years.

  • Candidates must have completed the last research position (either PhD research or a postdoc or equivalent) on or after January 1, 2014, or have a position that will end before October 1, 2014.

Applicants should submit a scanned image of a letter from their last academic mentor or advisor that states the position held and the date on which the position ended or will end. For more on the program and an application, visit

If you take part in this program, or did last year, share your stories with us! We would love to hear from you.


Read journal articles for free at your local library with Access to Research




A new service has been launched in the UK to give the public access to academic content through their local libraries, free of charge. Access to Research is a search interface available at participating public libraries which retrieves relevant results from across the platforms of many different publishers, thousands of journals, and millions of articles. Once you identify a relevant article, the user can then click through to the relevant publisher’s platform, where they can read it at no cost to them or to their library.

This is a joint effort by the Publishers Licensing Society, the Publishers Association and the Society of Chief Librarians, supported by 17 publishers, including Elsevier, who have helped develop the program and are contributing their content free of charge for the initiative. Elsevier is contributing access to more than 1,500 journals, including The Lancet and Cell Press titles.

From an initial low-key technical trial with 250 public libraries, the service has now been rolled out across the UK for an extended two-year pilot, during which the Publisher Licencing Society will look to gather information about data usage and demand to help assess how best to meet the access gaps. To mark the start of this two-year pilot, an event was held in Lewisham, one of the local authorities participating in the pilot. Publishers, librarians and the many stakeholders who contributed their time and expertise to building Access to Research got together at the beautiful Library at Deptford Lounge to talk about their journey and what the next steps in developing the program will look like.

David Willetts, the Minister for Universities and Science, called it a “great, exciting role for our public libraries” and said at the event that this was all about publishers and public libraries coming together to provide access to research content.

“In future you’ll just be able to walk down to your local public library and access whatever it is that you want to find, any research.”


Sarah Faulder, CEO of the Publishers Licencing Society, said that the scheme currently provided access to over 8,400 journal titles, which meant more than 1.5 million articles available to the public. Since there is no remote access to the service, it is hoped that this will encourage more people to make use of their local library facilities to discover and research that content. The scheme is open to all local authorities throughout the UK.

“This is just the start. There will be more published content made available and more local authorities signing up. “We’re also looking at what more might need to be done to train librarians and to support them in guiding users to find what they’re looking for and managing issues in information literacy that the service will raise with those less experienced in using academic publications.”

Janene Cox of the Society of Chief Librarians explained that Access to Research was setup in response to the recommendations made by the Finch Group, which explored how access to publicly funded research could be expanded, and would now form a key part of libraries’ information and digital offers.

“Public libraries have always been about learning. Charles Dickens called it “betterment” and it remains a vital part of the library’s function. I do believe that public libraries have never faced such challenging times, but we do provide access to, and the curation of, a huge amount of resources, and a digital age means that people can move seamlessly through websites and content, which support their personal learning journey. The public library, whether that be a physical or virtual space, is trusted, it’s safe, engaging and creative.”

There was then a live demo of the Access to Research search mechanism, which is powered by Summon, a software platform widely used in universities. The aim was to simplify the mechanism so that it resembled a common search engine interface such as Google.

“What we’re doing is giving a very fast service, for users to be able to search for something they’re interested in and deliver results.” Explained Phill Hall “What we want to do is to deliver a single search box. Inside that search box is all the content that publishers will have provided. The results come directly from articles on individual publishers’ websites, and when you click on it, it goes to those individual articles on the websites. The search box doesn’t differentiate where the content comes from. If the search term fits within the content that’s there, we deliver it.”

Will this help to disseminate academic knowledge to people who would not normally have access to it? Would you find it useful to have access to journals at your local library? Let us know your thoughts, get in touch by leaving a comment below!

Export directly from Scopus and Science Direct!



You know that nice feeling you get when things just work? Well, here at Mendeley we love coming up with ways to make that happen for researchers everywhere, and building features that save them time is usually a good way to go about it.

As a PhD student myself, I know that one of the biggest time drains when doing your research can be the process of finding, processing and organizing your relevant citations and papers. Having to download each one individually before adding them to Mendeley was a big frustration when doing my literature review, and many academics in our community shared similar experiences.

That’s why the Mendeley team put a lot of work in building an improved Web Importer that was released last June and then integrating it with Science Direct and Scopus (as well as most other sites!) to make the process of putting those papers and references in your Mendeley library as smooth and painless as possible, just as it should be.

To give Mendeley users even more options though, we’ve also worked with Elsevier to build the “Export to Mendeley” functionalities right into the Scopus and Science Direct platforms, which means that you don’t even have to install the web importer to send articles and citations to Mendeley, and you can also choose which folder in your library they should go into.







The fact that this is all done without you having to navigate away from your search results or article pages will hopefully speed up the research workflow for our users, and help them spend more time reading and writing papers rather than wrestling with them. Please let us know how this new feature works for you, and leave any suggestions in the comments below!



Researchers can stay up-to-date between jobs with free access to ScienceDirect



These are tough times for everybody and researchers are no exception. In the UK, for example, a recent report by Vitae suggests that although those with a doctoral qualification are more “recession proof,” they are increasingly being employed on shorter, fixed-term contracts. The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) also found that Australian scientists are finding it difficult to find jobs in their fields of expertise after graduating, and those that do find work struggle to transition from short-term positions into permanent careers.

The difficulty is compounded by the fact that researchers have to constantly dedicate large chunks of their time to putting together grant applications, which jeopardises their ability to publish and therefore their chances of being awarded those grants.

In between projects, researchers can also find themselves denied access to published research, which is usually dependent on being employed within an institution. This could prove disastrous to their careers, as it can effectively stop their research in its tracks and make securing a job even more challenging.

This is why Elsevier is extending the Postdoc Free Access Program they piloted last year, which granted complimentary access to books and journals on ScienceDirect to 64 unemployed researchers. After taking on board feedback from researchers, Elsevier decided to expand and relax the inclusion criteria, meaning many more people will be able to benefit this time around.

If you completed your PhD within the past 5 years and don’t currently hold a research position, you have until August 31st, 2013 to apply for a Free Access Passport. You’ll need to fill in a form to verify your credentials, and you must have completed your last research position (either your PhD research or a postdoc or equivalent) on or after 31 December 2012 or have a position that will be completed before 31st August 2013. Applicants should submit a scanned image of a letter from their last academic mentor or advisor that states the position held and the date on which the position ended or will end. Once approved, you will receive a personal code granting free access to over 2,500 peer-reviewed journals and 11,000 books on ScienceDirect for up to 6 months. For more on the program and an application, visit

Read the full article on Elsevier Connect for more details on how to access the program and stories of researchers who’ve participated so far. We’d also like to hear your thoughts and suggestions on whether you think this type of initiative is helpful.