NISO June Virtual Conference: Transforming Assessment: Alternative Metrics and Other Trends

Virtual conferences are 5-6 hour conferences held online in webinar-like formats, with occasional breaks in the schedule for participants. The longer length allows the depth of coverage of a conference coupled with the convenience of a webinar.

Date: June 18, 2014

Time: 11:00 am - 5:00 pm Eastern

Event webpage:


For decades, the landscape of assessment has been reasonably stable with traditional metrics, primarily the Journal Impact Factor (JIF), now provided by Thomson-Reuters. The JIF has served the community reasonably well for many decades, but with the growth of social media, open access mandates, and greater emphasis on articles over the journal "package," new methods of assessing quality and impact have exploded on the scene. The current metrics focus on the journal also leaves out a wide variety of non-traditional output of research such as data sets, software, visualization tools, or performance recordings, which are as—or even more—important than the journal article in some disciplines.

The new "alternative metrics" are not without their own issues. As with any new measures, different interpretations of the definitions exist, the metrics are inconsistently applied, or data from comprehensive ranges of sources are limited. NISO initiated a project in 2013 to identify issues around the new altmetrics that could be solved with standards or best practices. Phase 2 of the project is to develop the prioritized standards and recommended practices identified by the community.

This Virtual Conference will explore the range of new metrics forms and the infrastructure necessary to create reliable measures across the range of platforms, publishers, and authors. It will also discuss the current status of the NISO Altmetrics Initiative and what standards or best practices may be forthcoming in this area.


·         Keynote Address: Altmetrics at the Portfolio Level – Paul Groth, Ph.D., Assistant Professor at the VU University Amsterdam

·         Snowball Metrics: University-Owned Benchmarking to Reveal Strengths within All Activities – Dr. Lisa Colledge, Snowball Metrics Program Director, Elsevier

·         The Intersection between Library Management and Informatics Scholarship: Understanding, Assessing and Reporting Research Impact – Kristi L. Holmes, Ph.D., Director, Galter Health Sciences Library, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine

·         What Do Alternative Metrics and the 'Flight of the Bumblebee' Have in Common? – Martha Kyrillidou, Senior Director of Statistics and Service Quality Programs, Association of Research Libraries (ARL)

·         Identifying the Invisible Impact of Scholarly Publications: A Multi-Disciplinary Analysis Using Altmetrics – Ehsan Mohammadi, Ph.D. Candidate, Wolverhampton University

·         A Publisher's Perspective on Using Altmetrics – TBA

·         Virginia Tech’s Response to Research Data Needs: The Center for Digital Research and Scholarship –
Julie G. Speer, Associate Dean for Research and Informatics, University Libraries, Virginia Tech

·         NISO Altmetrics Initiative: A Project Update  – Martin Fenner, Technical Lead for the PLOS Article-Level Metrics project

·         Conference Roundtable: Finding Acceptance and Value: Why Altmetrics Matter


Registration is per site (access for one computer) and closes at 4:00 pm Eastern on June 17, 2014 (the day before the virtual conference). Discounts are available for NISO members and students. All virtual conference registrants receive access to the recorded version for one year.

Can't make it on the day of the virtual conference? All registrants receive access to the recorded version for one year. Take advantage of the Virtual Conference subscription package ( for all six of the 2014 Virtual Conferences and save 33%. (Previously held 2014 virtual conferences available in recorded versions.)

For more information and to register, visit the event webpage:


Cynthia Hodgson

Technical Editor / Consultant

National Information Standards Organization






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