In 2011, Mark Hahnel was a PhD student in stem cell biology at Imperial College London. He wanted to share research outputs with other scholars in formats other than a traditional peer-reviewed paper, including datasets, media, and negative results. When he couldn’t find a platform that would do this, Hahnel created Figshare.
Figshare is a digital repository that can assist researchers with sharing the results of their research. Beyond allowing researchers to share papers, Figshare enables users to share any kind of academic research output in any format including figures, datasets, videos, images, code, theses, posters, and presentations.
Outputs published in Figshare are:
- Citable, since they are assigned a DOI
- Shareable, since they are licensed under Creative Commons
- Discoverable, since you can include tags and metadata that are searchable
Figshare is an advocate for open science and is helping to facilitate the sharing of information between researchers. It also seeks to provide authors with credit for their work, by making their research outputs citable and by tracking views and downloads for all outputs published on Figshare. For example, the poster that inspired this series of blog posts, 101 Innovations in Scholarly Communication – the Changing Research Workflow by Bianca Kramer and Jeroen Bosman has received over 11,000 views and over 2,000 downloads on Figshare.
Next week is the final week of this series, and we will examine five tools for assessment.