April 18, 2024

Transforming Research with Persistent Identifiers

Persistent Identifiers


Introduction to Persistent Identifiers

In our recent webinar, experts from key organizations discussed the transformative potential of Persistent Identifiers (PIDs) in advancing research transparency and efficiency. These unique, alphanumeric strings are crucial for connecting and tracking research elements across the global scholarly ecosystem, fundamentally changing how data is managed and shared.


Alice Meadows and the Role of PIDs in Scholarly Communication

Alice Meadows, co-founder of the MoreBrains Cooperative and webinar moderator, set the stage by explaining the foundational role of PIDs in scholarly communication. She emphasized that PIDs enable unique identification and reliable linkage between researchers, institutions, and their outputs, thus forming the backbone of an open research infrastructure. This system not only enhances data integrity but also facilitates seamless collaborations across geographical and disciplinary boundaries.

Alice discussed how PIDs are used to manage the complexities inherent in the research landscape, where duplicate names and titles can lead to confusion and misattribution. By implementing PIDs, the research community can ensure that each contribution is uniquely identified and correctly attributed, thereby supporting accurate tracking and recognition of scholarly work.


ORCID’s Contribution to Enhancing Researcher Visibility

Shawna Sadler from ORCID highlighted the organization’s role in assigning unique identifiers to individuals, thereby solving the critical issue of researcher identity within the academic community. ORCID IDs are now integral to many researchers’ workflows, embedded in systems like Altum’s Proposal Central, where an impressive 80% adoption rate showcases their importance.

Shawna underscored the benefits of ORCID IDs in linking researchers with their contributions and funding sources, facilitating a more comprehensive understanding of their research impact. This integration not only simplifies administrative processes but also enhances the visibility and traceability of researchers’ careers.


ROR and the Importance of Organizational Identification

Amanda French discussed the Research Organization Registry (ROR) and its impact on clarifying and distinguishing among research organizations. Similar to how ORCID resolves individual identities, ROR focuses on disambiguating institutions, which is vital for accurate data tracking and attribution in research outputs.

ROR IDs ensure that institutions’ contributions are properly recognized in the research ecosystem, enhancing their ability to track output and impact effectively. Amanda highlighted how these identifiers are crucial for linking grants and publications to specific institutions, thus improving data accuracy and institutional accountability.


Crossref’s Role in Interlinking Research Outputs

Isaac Farley from Crossref elaborated on how the organization uses DOIs to interlink various research outputs across multiple platforms. Crossref’s role as a metadata hub enables the creation of rich, interconnected records that enhance the discoverability and citation of scholarly work.

Crossref facilitates a more interconnected scholarly communication environment by ensuring that all forms of research outputs are properly linked to their creators and funding sources. This connectivity is crucial for fostering an integrated research landscape where information flows seamlessly across platforms and borders.


DataCite’s Focus on Diverse Research Outputs

Xiaoli Chen from DataCite discussed how their platform addresses the need for identifying and linking a wide range of research outputs beyond traditional publications, such as datasets, software, and other non-traditional products. By assigning DOIs to these varied outputs, DataCite ensures they are recognized and traceable within the scholarly record.

DataCite’s efforts underscore the importance of inclusivity in scholarly communications, acknowledging and attributing all forms of scholarly outputs. This broad recognition supports a richer, more diverse academic ecosystem that values all contributions to knowledge.


Conclusion: A Unified Call for PID Integration

The webinar concluded with a powerful call to action for integrating PIDs across all facets of the research process. The speakers collectively emphasized the need for a unified approach to adopting PIDs, highlighting the benefits of such an integration for enhancing research transparency, efficiency, and collaboration.

The adoption of PIDs represents a significant shift towards a more connected and transparent research environment. By supporting every aspect of the research lifecycle, from proposal submission to final publication and beyond, PIDs ensure that the global research community is well-equipped to meet the challenges and opportunities of the digital age.

If you missed the live session or would like to revisit the insightful discussions, we invite you to watch the webinar on demand. Access the full recording to gain a deeper understanding of how Persistent Identifiers can transform your research practices and outcomes.