The emergence of the alternative metric that can make the measurement of world academic production more fair and egalitarian

Nadia Vanti, Professora, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Gestão da Informação e do Conhecimento, Departamento de Ciência da Informação, Natal, RN, Brazil

Social networks have promoted greater community access to all types of communication, including scientific communication. It is necessary to create an alternative method that contemplates the measurement of scientific production not only in the academic environment, but also in other areas. Altimetry is the area of Metric Studies that, starting from the analysis of the flow of information and knowledge in social networks, emerges as a new way of measuring the impact and influence that academic activities have achieved on different platforms.

Nadia Vanti, Professor of the Department of Information Science, Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, and Elías Sanz Casado, Professor of the School of Humanities, Communication and Documentation, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, in an article published in the third number of the 28th issue of the journal TransInformação, explain how the metric was developed, its antecedents and associated concepts. The authors also describe the applications of Altimetry and how it can help to measure the influence or social impact of activities or scientific production and how it shapes the academic field itself. Thus, an alternative metric that complements the traditional ones may allow the counting of citations or references of international academic production to be more fair and egalitarian, consequently, leading to a more democratic science.

In a dialogue with other researchers working on the theme, Vanti and Casado also address other issues of no less importance such as data sources, tools and counting models, and provide examples that facilitate the understanding of the potentialities and limitations of Altimetry.

This study was supported by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES).

To read this article, access

VANTI, N.; SANZ-CASADO, E. Altmetrics: Social media metrics for a more democratic Science. Transinformação [online]. 2016, vol. 28, n. 3, pp. 349-358. [viewed 13 January 2017]. ISSN 2318-0889. DOI: 10.1590/2318-08892016000300009. Available from:

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Transinfromação – TINF:


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The emergence of the alternative metric that can make the measurement of world academic production more fair and egalitarian [online]. SciELO in Perspective: Humanities, 2017 [viewed ]. Available from:


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