This has been a year of substantial internal change for ORCID. Our transformational grant from the Helmsley Trust ended in March, and we took the opportunity to re-evaluate our programs. This has led to the creation of our new Engagement team, formed by the merger of our previous Membership and Community teams. As of 1 October, this global team - structured by region (Americas; Asia-Pacific; and Europe, Middle East & Africa) - is providing member support, managing user tickets, and helping to build regional communities of practice.
I am pleased to announce that Matthew Buys is leading the Engagement team. Matt started at ORCID in 2015, hired on using Helmsley Trust funding, to lead our membership efforts in Middle East and Africa. He subsequently took on responsibility for Europe and Canada too, and last year was promoted into the position of Membership Director. In his new role, he is leading a team of 12, six of whom have joined ORCID this year. Each team member is responsible for a specific region or set of countries, and for end-to-end support for members and users in those countries.
Matt is supported by three regional Engagement managers: Ana Heredia is leading our Americas team, and new team member Ivo Wijnbergen is leading our EMEA team. For the time being, Matt will serve as interim lead of our entirely new Asia-Pacific team.
As if that were not enough change, at the same time that we were recruiting and onboarding the new team members and training everyone in their new roles, we also moved onto a new support ticketing system in September, and improved how we are handing badging for our Collect and Connect program.
But wait, yes, there IS MORE.
Alice Meadows, who formerly led the Community team, is moving into a new role as our Communications Director. Alice came to ORCID with Matt in the Helmsley class of 2015. She is very much looking forward to moving into a role where she can focus on her first love. She will be responsible for working with our regional teams to establish and implement our communications strategy, ensuring that we remain on message – and that our message is clear and well-articulated.
At the same time, Laura Paglione has recently left us to start in a new role as an independent consultant. Laura was ORCID employee #2 and ever my unfailing #2, leading our technical team until 2016, when she moved into a new role as Director of Strategic Initiatives. Laura has been an invaluable team member, responsible for more things than I can name easily in a short post: developing the look and feel of the ORCID website and Registry, ensuring we have a solid technical infrastructure, leading efforts to define how to cite (and implement citation of) peer review, and establishing our Trust Program, not to mention doing a huge amount of work on our internal information- sharing platforms including SalesForce and our first user ticketing system. I -- and all of us -- will miss her dearly. I am very happy that she will be making time for ORCID in her consultancy. Look for Laura at Identity Management meetings and leading our 2019 project on person citations.
Clearly, 2018 has seen a lot churn at ORCID. We have not had this level of change since 2015 when we doubled our team size. But amid it all, our goal remains the same: to serve our community effectively. Coming up on our sixth anniversary later this month, we are:
- Growing up, getting closer every day to being fully supported by our membership fees. Thank you to everyone for your ongoing support!
- Growing stronger, with close to 1000 members and well over 5m registered users. We foster the development of communities of practice to scale adoption in regional communities, often working with ORCID consortia to do so. Over half our members now participate in these consortia, which are run by locally-supported community managers.
- Growing more connections, both in volume and variety. We have expanded our data model in API v. 3.0 to support more research information use cases for asserting affiliations and exposing the resources that researchers use. We welcome partners to test the new API in our sandbox. Your feedback is essential!
- Continuing to focus on transparency and trust. We are partnering with identifier providers to ensure that these connections are discoverable and support open research. We are working to define concepts and practice around trusted assertions and FAIR persistent identifiers. Look for more on this in the coming months.
- Encouraging the adoption and use of ORCID as a key component of the broader open research information infrastructure. We will soon be launching a partners program for research information platform providers to make it even easier for organizations to use ORCID, regardless of their size or technical capabilities. More on this soon.
We will continue to engage with our community -- here, on social media, and at the events we host and attend -- to ensure we are meeting your needs as ORCID adoption continues to increase. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome.