Yesterday saw an important milestone in the progress of the ORCID researcher and contributor identifier initiative, as the service was launched to the public. You can now register for an ORCID and use the built-in CrossRef search to choose publications that you have written to link to your identifier.
Following on from the launch, the ORCID team hosted a meeting today in Berlin to celebrate the launch and to share news about recent developments in the work of the ORCID team and the broader ORCID stakeholder community.
Howard Ratner gave an overview of the history of ORCID to date to kick off the meeting. The initiative started back in 2009 (we reported on the first stakeholder meeting in this blog post). The first phase of ORCID is aimed squarely at individual researchers and by lunchtime today over 850 people had signed up for an identifier in the system. Future phases will look at options for importing records from other trusted sources and conversations with ORCID representatives at the meeting today confirmed our feeling that the disambiguated data within Names would be a good set for ORCID to work with, especially as the records already contain ISNIs (International Standard Name Identifiers) which are in the same form as ORCIDs. Watch this space for updates on that!
A number of systems which had implemented some kind of ORCID integration were demonstrated at the meeting, including ImpactStory, a site which measures the bookmarking, sharing and saving of publications, slideshows and data sets from a range of different websites, including ORCID, SlideShare, Dryad, GitHub and Google Scholar.
After a keynote from JISC’s Josh Brown, a panel session in the afternoon discussed the relationship between international initiatives such as ORCID and ISNI and specialist or national services operating in the same space. Magchiel Bijsterbosch of the SURF foundation in the Netherlands talked about the situation there, where there is a fairly mature author identification system. Magchiel raised a number of challenges faced by national systems but concluded that there would probably still be a role for such systems in the area of disambiguation. There was some consensus in the meeting that ORCID might want to delegate disambiguation to the wider community, particularly to local experts, rather than attempt to take on this role itself for the whole world.