Researchers’ online visibility: Tensions of visibility, trust and reputation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Purpose – The purpose of this article is to understand what role researchers assign to online representations on the new digital communication sites that have emerged, such as Academia, ResearchGate or Mendeley. How are researchers’ online presentations created, managed, accessed and, more generally, viewed by academic researchers themselves? And how are expectations of the academic reward system navigated and re-shaped in response to the possibilities afforded by social media and other digital tools?
Design/methodology/approach – Focus groups have been used for empirical investigation to learn about the role online representation is assigned by the concerned researchers.
Findings – The study shows that traditional scholarly communication documents are what also scaffolds trust and builds reputation in the new setting. In this sense, the new social network sites reinforce rather than challenge the importance of formal publications.
Originality/value – An understanding of the different ways in which researchers fathom the complex connection between reputation and trust in relation to online visibility as a measure of, or at least an attempt at, publicity (either within academia or outside it) is essential. This article emphasizes the need to tell different stories by exploring how researchers understand their own practices and reasons for them.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Information Studies


  • scholarly communication
Original languageEnglish
JournalOnline Information Review
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Oct 15
Publication categoryResearch

Total downloads

No data available

Related projects

Sara Kjellberg, Helena Francke, Jutta Haider & Olof Sundin


Project: Research

Cathrine V. Felix, Emmanuel Genot, Erik J Olsson, George Masterton, Kristoffer Ahlstrom-Vij, Rasmus Kraemmer Rendsvig, Sille Obelitz Søe, Ylva von Gerber, Jonas Fransson, Cecilia Andersson, Jutta Haider, Lars Ilshammar, Linnéa Lindsköld, Olof Sundin, Sara Kjellberg & Hanna Carlsson

Swedish Research Council


Project: Research

View all (3)