Planning Guide for Research Institutions

ORCID adoption heralds a paradigm shift from repetitive, isolated workflows, to harnessing the full benefits of interoperability and digital technology in the research and scholarly communication ecosystem. Effective ORCID adoption requires three equally important components:

  • Stakeholder support – partnering with internal stakeholders to make decisions about how to get the most value from ORCID
  • Technical integration – configuring institutional system(s) to connect with the ORCID registry via the ORCID API (application programming interface)
  • Outreach and education – encouraging individual researchers at your institution to register for an ORCID iD and use it whenever possible

This brief guide outlines considerations and suggestions for how to make the most of ORCID membership across your organization. Additional ORCID member resources and examples are available at https://members.orcid.org/resources and on the ORCID US Community Resources page.

Use the ORCID US Community Planning Worksheet to keep notes as you start to plan.

Step 1: Stakeholder Support

Build a business case

To get the most value from your ORCID integration(s), you'll likely need support from key stakeholders across your institution with an understanding of the ORCID benefits for a research institution, including the ability to:

  • Reduce administrative burden via automated, interoperable workflows (enter once, re- use often)
  • Assess and measure impact by maintaining connections with affiliated researchers' activities (even after they leave the institution)
  • Control appearance of institution name and assert trustworthy affiliations onto individuals’ ORCID records
  • Help your affiliated researchers manage name disambiguation, keep track of their contributions and affiliations, and save time

Considerations:

  • ORCID records can contain information about your researchers’ education, employment, funding, works and other contributions. How might your institution benefit from gathering and asserting this kind of data and activities?
  • What efficiencies or cost savings could be gained?
  • How will you assess the impact of your integration(s)?

Identify stakeholders

Strategic ORCID integrations often require planning with multiple stakeholders, and the best approach will vary based on your local context. Two general patterns have emerged for strategic ORCID planning: 1) forming a cross-institutional ORCID group to plan for comprehensive, organization-wide adoption, and 2) forming a library-centric ORCID group to spearhead ORCID integration in library systems that can then be used to demonstrate the value of ORCID to other organizational stakeholders. Common stakeholders at a research institution include:

Stakeholder

Example Goal

Library

Integrate an institutional repository or data management system with ORCID to track and more easily manage submissions

Graduate School

​Assess program impact and student activities after graduation by connecting with ORCID

​Research Office

Configure a Current Research Information System (CRIS) to use ORCID data for faculty evaluations, promotion, and tenure

​Grants Office

Utilize ORCID to streamline the grant management process

Central IT

Leverage ORCID in multiple campus systems to streamline information flow and system maintenance

​Human Resources

Connect campus ID management system with ORCID for more robust personnel tracking and assessmen

Considerations:

  • Do stakeholders know about ORCID?
  • Do stakeholders know what benefits ORCID can provide for their department/unit and institution as a whole?
  • Do stakeholders understand the benefits of ORCID for individual researchers?
  • Are there specific academic departments that should be included in planning and outreach?

For additional ideas, see our blog on partnering with internal stakeholders to adopt ORCID.

Step 2: Technical Integration

Determine which systems to integrate with ORCID

Depending on your goals, one or more systems will need to be configured to work with ORCID via the ORCID API. Use the ORCID API Basics & Benefits webinar recording to learn more.

  • Are you using a third-party system already capable of integrating with ORCID?
  • Are you planning to design your own custom integration with a local system?
  • If your vendor systems do not support ORCID yet, and you do not have the resources to do a custom ORCID integration, consider using the ORCID Affiliation Manager tool to enable adding affiliations to your researchers’ ORCID records.

Considerations:

  • How many different systems do you want to integrate with ORCID, and how will various systems interact? (ORCID US Community members get 5 API credentials)
  • What do you want to be able to do/achieve with your integration?
    • Do you want to read data from ORCID records, write data to ORCID records, or both?
    • What ORCID information would be useful to each stakeholder group and/or useful to all stakeholders?
    • What reports would be helpful for each stakeholder group?
    • How would information flow between systems?
    • What resources can be drawn upon from across different stakeholder groups?
  • Who will work on the integration(s) and when will the work take place?
  • Where/how will you store secure data retrieved from ORCID records?
  • Where/how will you store information to be written to ORCID records?
  • What client name will you use for each integration?
  • Contact orcidus@lyrasis.org to set up a consultation and discuss options for meeting ORCID requirements with your custom integration.

Configure systems to work with ORCID API

Implementation efforts will vary across organizations based on the resources available. ORCID integrations begin in a sandbox environment before moving to production. Whether you are developing your own software systems or integrating with vendor systems, make sure to follow the guidelines of ORCID's best practices: https://members.orcid.org/api/member-api-credentials-check-list. At the most basic level, your software should be able to:

  • Use OAuth 2.0 to authenticate a researcher's ORCID iD
  • Store ORCID data securely
  • Create a consistent user experience by displaying the green ORCID iD icon
  • Communicate why your institution collects authenticated iDs and how this benefits your researchers

Integration Resources:

Additional information about the ORCID API: https://members.orcid.org/api

Step 3: Outreach

To ensure that all stakeholders reap the full benefits of ORCID, individual researchers must register and use their ORCID iDs. Researchers must go through an authentication process to grant permission for institutional systems to connect with their iD record. Spreading the word about ORCID to researchers requires ongoing outreach, education, and training. Outreach to individuals can take place before, during, and after the technical integration process, to:

  1. Raise awareness about ORCID's benefits (building anticipation)
  2. Encourage researchers to create their ORCID iD and authorize permission for your system(s) to connect (promoting action), and
  3. Promote ongoing recognition and use of ORCID (spreading awareness)

Outreach Resources:

Considerations:

  • Who is your target audience for the initial rollout? Common initial audiences include faculty and/or students from a specific department, or new faculty/students. Including an introduction to ORCID at new employee and/or new student orientation is a good idea.
  • Who will be leading and conducting the outreach efforts?
  • What outreach materials and format(s) might best reach your audience?
  • Who will answer researchers’ questions about ORCID at your institution?

Conclusion

As you work through the steps of ORCID adoption, stay tuned to the ORCID US listserv, and keep in touch with the ORCID US Community through the ORCID US members discussion forum. If you need any assistance along the way, or to join the members discussion forum, send an email to orcidus@lyrasis.org.

Acknowledgements

This document was inspired by the work of the Australian Access Federation and the Royal Society Te Apārangi, and shaped by ideas and feedback from staff at the University of Oregon Libraries, Stanford University, Georgia Tech Libraries, and Florida State University Libraries.

Have ideas on how to improve this document? Please contact orcidus@lyrasis.org.

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