Dimensions – our database for the research cycle

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Digital Science just released their latest baby! Dimensions is a database for the research cycle – grants, articles, patents, and clinical trials. It’s also augmented with the Altmetric data, which means that attentions (from news outlet, social medias, and policy document) can be directly seen. Funders and research organisations are also integral part of the product (using GRID), which means it’s possible to explore research funded by specific funders, the articles subsequently published, along with patents and clinical trials.

Some of us at Digital Science produced some quick analyses of the data. The results are published today: A Guide to the Dimensions Data Approach.

I wrote the two first analyses:

  • Research cycle of Parkinson’s research: funders, publications and clinical trials around 12,000 research grants
  • International network of funding in Arts and Humanities

Dimensions is a unique database to create that kind of analyses.

Research cycle of Parkinson’s research

I wanted to show the link between funders, length of grants, the number of times the resulting publications were cited, and clinical trials. I only considered the largest funders: mainly US and UK based. The graph is described in more length in the report, so here I will only talk about the data.

The link between funders and publications can only be made through the acknowledgment written by the authors. If it is missing or poorly referenced, we cannot make that link and can explain the difference between some funders. Acknowledgements are notoriously poorly written, and can explain some of the differences between funders we can see here.


International network of funding in Arts and Humanities

The Arts and Humanities are not known for their large international projects. However, there are still some exchanges between countries, especially around European countries. Another interesting interpretation from this network is also that US funders do not fund the same research organisations (read more in the report).