“Research impact; what does it mean? We as researchers are increasingly getting judged, and then hired and fired, based on our research performance. The 2014 UK research excellence framework (REF) include a metric on impact. We are told that going forward research impact is going to be increasingly important. It is a great pity we can’t rely in the tried and tested way of assessing research impact based on citations and longevity of research over time. Short-term impact may turn out to be a fad; i.e. pop science, and disappear with time. In comparison transformational discoveries stand the the test of time; they are adopted and become entrenched in our culture.”
Dinsmore et al. Alternative Perspectives on Impact: The Potential of ALMs and Altmetrics to Inform Fundersabout Research Impact. PLoS Biol. 2014 Nov 25;12(11):e1002003.
More evidence of the meaning and validity of ALMs and altmetrics, coupled with greater consistency and transparency in their presentation, would enable research funders to explore their potential value and identify appropriate use cases.