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Measuring societal impact and relevance

Measuring societal impact and relevance: tools & services

VU Library is developing two kinds of services for research groups to demonstrate societal impact and relevance of research in annual reporting and SEP-evaluations.

1. Societal impact of and societal attention for your publications
You can use Altmetric Explorer to find out where your research is mentioned in places such as policy documents, patents, the press, blogs and on social media.
This will allow you to analyse the social impact of your research department over time and provide evidence of your social impact for evaluation reports.
If you wish, Altmetric will alert you when your research is mentioned in important sources.
Use this Altmetric Explorer Invite Link to register an account.
Tip: you can only register when logged on to the campus network, and to do so you must use your or email address.
Once you have created an account, you can save your searches and use them to create alerts and live dashboards.
Useful links:
•    Visit the VU and VUmc Altmetric Explorer: go to
•    Further explanation of Altmetric Explorer
•    Further explanation of Altmetric Score
•    Register your own Altmetric account using the Altmetric Explorer Invite Link

2. Societal relevance
This analysis method uses policy themes (e.g. sustainable development goals) instead of research fields to classify research output.
VU Library is developing do it yourself guides and can help you to demonstrate the contribution of your research department to policy themes.

Sharing knowledge & best practices
To keep up to date with developments and new methods in metrics VU Library participates in (inter)national networks in order to share knowledge and best practices.

  • International: AurorA Societal Impact & Relevance of Research
    A project to measure societal relevant research based on global challenges such as UN: Sustainable Development Goals and EU: Societal Challenges.
  • Research Intelligence Network Netherlands.
    A national expertise network with CWTS, where bibliometric experts share knowledge and best practises.