Social networks

Termcat's definition of social network is a platform that allows interaction, sharing and exchange of informaton, the internet community that gathers to do so is also known as social network.

The global increase  in the use of social networks has brought changes in the way people relate to each other and communicate with each other. These changes have also reached the science field. The scientific community uses increasingly these tools in order to share and obtain information, but also to stay connected and create synergy with other researchers.

There is a wide diversity of social networks. There are generic social networks and also specialized social networks aimed to researchers. Each one has differents focuses, aims and objectives. It must be remembered that they are private business initiatives and therefore it is not recommended to use them as repositories, as they do not check on copyright.  When you upload a document in social networks:

  1. you must make sure it complies with copyright and
  2. remember that publishing in a social network is not publishing open access as you will not  be complying with any requirements from research funding agencies or with any current legislation if you intend to publish documents resulting from research funded by these agencies

If you want to use social networds as a means to disseminate research you are advised to provide links to documents stored in a repository (preferably an open access one).

Generic social networks

Generic social networks are well-known universal platforms with high degrees of penetration. The most common ones are:

Enllaç a Linkedin



LinkedIn: it is the most widely used platform in the professional world. It is a vertical social network, meaning it is targeted to people with specific interests or a certain category of users, in this case professionals.


   Enllaç a Facebook


Facebook: this is a horizontal social network, that is, it is targeted to all kinds of users and it is not restricted to a particular subject area. Facebook allows you to create groups, share information, debate, etc.


   Enllaç a Instagram               

Instagram: this is also a horizontal social network. It is freely accessed network where  users can share pictures and videos.


   Enllaç a Twitter


it is a platform where users send short messages that may include images, videos or links. It is also a horizontal free access network.  Researchers  use it mainly  to disseminate recent publications or events in which they take part.


Scholarly social networks

Scholarly social networks are aimed to researchers, so that they can share their research and resources. A profile can be created and managed, as well as selecting publication metrics. The main Scholarly social networks are:

   Enllaç a Research Gate

ResearchGate: is a well-established social network aimed to the research community. It has a semantic search engine working in the top scholarly databases. There is also a section with questions and answers and a tool to search job and cooperation offers.

   Enllaç a this network allows researchers to interact with messages, take part in forums, select areas of interest and activate notifications.


   Enllaç a Mendeley              

Mendeley: this is a free web and desktop reference management application with a social profile to manage and share bibliographic references and scientific documents, find articles and cooperate.

   Enllaç a Labroots


Labroots: this social networks offers a diversity of virtual education events (conferences, seminars…), as well as webinars and scientific news.


   Enllaç a Google Scholar Citations Google Scholar Citations:

this search engine provides a way for authors to keep track of citations to their articles. Authors can also create their own profile, that will be seen with the results retrieved by Google Scholar when a name search is conducted.

Further information: