The Social Science Research Network (SSRN) has recently launched a new specialty network specifically for biology research. SSRN is host to approximately 625,000 papers and 750,000 abstracts. Elsevier acquired SSRN which is a working paper repository and preprint server that is about 20 years old. This acquisition has made it possible for SSRN to redesign its website, making it easier to use and introducing full-text search. SSRN will also be making the integration of Elsevier research products into its platform, such as Mendeley and Pure, possible. It launched the Biology Research Network (BioRN) since it was already hosting many biology papers in areas such as biotechnology, bioethics law, and ecology. In less than a week, BioRN is already hosting 4,500 papers from 6,500 biology researchers.
Building a Dedicated Biology Network
BioRN is the hope of Gregg Gordon, Managing Director of SSRN whose objective is that having a dedicated biology network will make it easier for researchers from different fields to work together. As an example, BioRN will host works in bioethics law that should make it easier for biologists and lawyers to find relevant information. It is expected that BioRN will also make it possible for authors to receive constructive criticism from their peers while enhancing researchers’ reputations. As a preprint server, BioRN gives researchers the opportunity to be acknowledged for early discoveries. It also allows readers to identify top papers and authors via their download and citation metrics.
Biology researchers can create a free SSRN account and as part of the process, they can review their personal information and subscriptions to SSRN’s journals. Once this has been completed, authors can submit their biology research to the SSRN eLibrary under the BioRN classification. Gregg Gordon will be hosting a live webcast about BioRN on June 21 at 1400h Eastern Daily Time. Registration is required for this webinar and can be done here.
The launch of BioRN represents a boost to the biology research community. SSRN choosing to host biology research in a dedicated space (BioRN) should make it easier for interdisciplinary collaborators to find each other. These collaborations could be within various biological fields or between the biological and social sciences. BioRN will also be a place for constructive, informal peer review that should enhance researchers’ reputations and allow them to receive credit for early discoveries. BioRN can also be used by members of the biology research community to share their ideas, receive feedback, and establish collaborations outside of their normal sphere.
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