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Empowering Graduate Student Research: Linking ORCID Identifiers to Theses and Dissertations

April 3, 2014

In the past few weeks, we've seen some exciting new integrations that link ORCID identifiers with graduate student thesis and dissertation information. These developments, coming from the British Library and Texas A&M University, help connect scholars with their important, early career publications. A master's thesis or doctoral dissertation is often a researcher's first publication, but it often lacks the visibility of more formally published materials. Integration of ORCID identifiers in the electronic thesis and dissertation (ETD) process helps to raise the visibility of these important contributions and also can provide a verifiable link with the student's graduate institution.

Tools to Link Theses with ORCID Identifiers

The British Library maintains the EThOS database, a national record of the more then 350,000 doctoral theses awarded by UK Higher Education institutions. EThOS supports the UK Government’s principle that publications resulting from publicly-funded research should be made openly accessible to the public, providing opportunities for further research.

As part of the European Commission-supported ODIN Project, the British Library have now made it possible for researchers and scholars to import their thesis listed in the EThOS database into their ORCID record using a newly-developed search and link wizard. The tool currently pulls the thesis metadata from EThOS and pushes it into ORCID, but in the future it will also attach the user's ORCID iD to the EThOS record. By linking to document identifiers such as the EThOS persistent identifier assigned by the British Library, the ORCID-EThOS import tool increases the discoverability and visibility of the early work of researchers and scholars.

Researchers may also link to their graduate work using a new figshare metadata enhancement that distinguishes theses and dissertations from other datasets and documents. Figshare was an ORCID Early Adopter; this recent addition of "thesis" to the list of figshare research output types allows users can upload their thesis or dissertation, obtain a DOI, and link it to their ORCID identifier.

To read the full blog post by Rebecca Bryant, visit here.