Efficiently building knowledge

By: Louise Springthorpe

BMK webinar image 2How much time do you spend adding to your knowledge base? Consider all the tasks involved: searching for data and literature; evaluating their relevance; downloading what you need; and then organizing everything, including your own experimental data, so that you can always find and share a given piece of information when it’s required.

We estimate that researchers spend one to two days per week on such tasks. Fortunately, there are ways to increase efficiency, leaving more time to focus on research projects.

One way is ensuring that information is easy to discover. Elsevier’s research solutions, like ScienceDirect, Scopus, Reaxys and Engineering Village, access high-quality collections of literature and data indexed with dedicated taxonomies. Articles and books are available in electronic formats to support efficient review, and data export is possible in a range of formats suitable for further analytics.

Mendeley is a popular and user-friendly platform for creating your own library. Its collaborative features allow multiple researchers to annotate documents and share information. Elsevier is also refining our text mining tools to improve library searching. For more reliable data capture, management and storage, we offer an ELN and cloud-based platforms, including Mendeley Data.

These cutting-edge solutions reflect Elsevier’s promise to build an ecosystem of solutions and services that help researchers achieve their goals more efficiently.

Join our Build My Knowledge: Effectively collect, organize and retrieve your personal knowledge base webinar where 3 fellow researchers will discuss how they effectively collect, organize and retrieve their personal knowledge base and provide insights on how they keep themselves organized in the era of information overload.

Date: Tuesday 10th September
Time: 10am Los Angeles, 1pm New York, 6pm London

Register here

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Mendeley users can now import directly from Scopus!



We’re constantly looking to expand our web importer so that that it supports as many databases and formats as possible. In September we integrated full-text direct importing functionality from ScienceDirect, and now it’s great to be able to add Scopus – the largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature – to that list as well.

Users can import individual or multiple Scopus documents (subject to entitlements of course) directly to their Mendeley Library. The importer also retrieves all the relevant metadata for the documents you’re viewing, making the whole process of searching and adding those abstracts and citations really smooth and intuitive.

The aim is to keep on adding functionality and features that make your research workflow faster, easier and more efficient. Please give it a try and let us know what you think!

Importing ScienceDirect PDFs into Mendeley



We have recently improved ScienceDirect support with our web importer. This integration means that once a user has been authenticated on www.sciencedirect.com, the Mendeley Importer will recognize that they have the right to access full-text PDFs and enable them to download these directly to their Mendeley Library with just one click.

We understand that importing PDFs and references from the web is an important part of many researchers’ workflow. That’s why we’re aiming to support a wide range of journal websites, search engines, and will carry on bringing out many exciting new features like this one. Watch this space!




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 elsevier.com/postdocfreeaccess

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.