In November 2017, Peerwith and Erasmus University Rotterdam came together for the Partnership Effect pilot. The purpose of the pilot was to investigate how a library could facilitate access to the best and most affordable researcher services for researchers at their institute.
In this case study we look at the partnership between Peerwith and Erasmus University Rotterdam and how facilitators, such as a university library in this instance, can help researchers improve the quality of their scientific work.
A private marketplace with Erasmus experts
Researchers at Erasmus University and the Erasmus Medical Center were invited to sign up for a specially-created Private Marketplace through a landing page on Peerwith. In this marketplace researchers could request services from Peerwith experts, and if they wished, register themselves as an expert to offer services to their peers. The primary goal of the marketplace was to encourage Erasmus researchers to collaborate with and support one another. The marketplace offered a range of researcher services, including; language editing, grant proposal support, and publication and data policy consultancy.
Where services were requested from experts who were outside of the institution the cost was (partially) covered by Erasmus University Rotterdam. Matthijs van Otegem, Director of the Erasmus University Library, talks about why the university joined the pilot, “The library’s mission is to support the creation and exchange of knowledge. We do so by managing scientific content and by offering a broad range of services. This pilot allows us to connect an extensive range of research services, both from within and outside the university, and offer them through a single, user friendly interface. Our researchers can now easily contact experts to support them in the publication process.”
Libraries increasingly play a role in directing researchers to the right researcher services. This partnership pilot between Peerwith and Erasmus University Rotterdam took an ambitious and unique approach to the issue. The private marketplace created by Peerwith ensured researchers had the best and most affordable research services at their fingertips, but more importantly, Peerwith provided a platform where Erasmus researchers could collaborate with and support one another. By allowing Erasmus researchers to sign up as experts, Erasmus authors who were found to often be reluctant to ask for help with their manuscripts were given the security to acquire services from people they trust and can deliberate with.
A wide range of facilitators
As libraries are increasingly going digital the librarian role is evolving and providing access to researcher services is often included in their offerings. However, this idea of a partnership between Peerwith and an institutional facilitator does not just fit the role of a librarian. Other roles within institutions such as; research management, support or administration could also act as gatekeepers between researchers and a Peerwith private marketplace.
Adopting the Cockpit application
The final part of our Erasmus pilot concerned the adoption of the Cockpit application. Just recently launched, Erasmus Rotterdam was an early adopter of the application which gives administrators, such as the librarian, power over their publication budgets and planning. It is a key feature and management console for our Institutional Solutions package, supercharging any pre-publication workflow by providing a helicopter view of all Peerwith products within a private market place, such as the one for Erasmus.
This successful pilot grew into a strong and mutually-beneficial partnership including a private marketplace and adoption of an Institutional Solutions package, including the Cockpit application. As well as helping Erasmus reach their goal of increasing the number of articles their researchers publish in international, indexed, peer-review journals, Peerwith has provided the university with a transparent, efficient and cost-effective pre-publication workflow. This case study shows how facilitators, such as librarians, support, administration or research management, have an important role to play in ensuring researchers have access to high-quality researcher services.