Measuring societal impact beyond standard publication metrics


The methods for measuring society impact beyond standard publication metrics are improving, writes Chris Woolston for Nature, but several challenges remain. Woolston speaks to policy researchers in Europe and the UK who emphasize the importance of embracing a broad view of research impact that recognizes scientists for their contributions to society. However, this can only be done with the introduction of a system to measure and track impact in a reliable manner. As Woolston describes the approaches used by organizations to track impact, he highlights examples such as tracking citations in policies, assessing innovation beyond patent counts, and contribution mapping by academic and non-academic staff.