Tagged / BRIAN

Upgrading BRIAN on Monday 23rd September

BRIANBRIAN will be upgraded on Monday 23rd September.  This upgrade beings a new look and feel to BRIAN with a vibrant red banner to emphasise the many changes and improvements. 

This message is for information.  There is nothing you need to do.  All of the existing data will be transferred as part of the upgrade.

Please do not log into BRIAN on Monday 23rd.  In preparation for the upgrade, please do not make any changes to the data in BRIAN after Sunday as doing so may mean your changes are lost. 

There are some configuration changes to be made to add the grant component and research areas, and checks to be performed so please do not log into BRIAN until Tuesday 24th.

At the same time as we have been preparing for the BRIAN upgrade, we have been developing the new Staff Profile Page application.  This will be a major improvement on what we have today.  More on this next week once BRIAN has been updated.

The importance of keeping your job title up to date

It is important to maintain your job title because this information is used in your external profile page.   If you have no job title in the system the external profile page will show ‘n/a’ which is not very helpful.  There are 88 profiles that show ‘n/a’ as the job title. 

If you do not currently have a job title, please take a moment to add one.  If you have changed role recently, please ensure your job title is up to date.

Job titles are maintained using the facility on the intranet home page to ‘Update your contact details’.  From here, you can open the Contact Details Editor screen.  On the Contact Details Editor screen, the lowest field, ‘Title’, holds your job title.  Add a job title or amend the existing entry if required and click on Update.

If you have any queries, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

PS.  If your title (eg Mr, Mrs, Dr, Professor etc) is incorrect, you will need to email HREnquiries@bournemouth.ac.uk to request a change.

Don’t get left behind with the new BU Research Themes


As posted by Matthew Bennett yesterday, the Research Themes have changed.  Information about the changes to each Research Theme can be found here.

Research Themes are captured on BRIAN and so it is important to ensure you are still linked to the correct theme(s) in BRIAN when the new version is released later this month. 

Over the next week, we will be emailing users affected by the revision to the themes to confirm which of the new themes are most relevant to them.  We will map those affeced across to the new themes.  If the new theme is no longer relevant then we will inform them how to change this.

If you don’t already identify any research themes in your BRIAN profile, this is a good chance to add that information.  The new Staff Profile Pages, which will go live in October, will be based around Research Themes and so it is important that you have identified at least one.

How to create the perfect profile


The academic profile in BRIAN can hold a wide range of information about professional activities, publications and (shortly) grants.  As the information in BRIAN is used to populate the profile page which is available to anyone on the web, it is important that there is a minimum set of information that everyone maintains.  This minimum set of information will ensure that everyone’s academic profile contains entries for the same types of data, ensuring a consistent level of information across all profiles within the University.

The profile pages are displayed whenever anyone from inside or outside the University seeks information on a member of academic staff.  The external viewers include other academics who may be seeking collaboration partners, potential students, commercial enterprises investigating research or enterprise possibilities etc.  It is particularly important that those who are potentially being put forward for the REF have full external profiles.

To attain the minimum standard that has been defined for BRIAN, please ensure you have entries in the following areas.

  • Biography
  • Research theme
  • Keywords
  • Qualifications
  • Publications

In line with the new version of BRIAN, we have prepared a document ‘BRIAN – Minimum data requirements‘ containing examples of the information required.  This is especially relevant for the biography where recent examples of engaging biographies demonstrate what can be achieved.

Once the new version of BRIAN is deployed, we will add some more areas to the minimum standard.  These are:

  • Research
  • Grants
  • Photograph

In the new version of BRIAN, you will be able to maintain your photograph yourself.

Academic staff are encouraged to go beyond this minimum level and to record and maintain as much of their academic lives in BRIAN as possible.  We encourage you to use BRIAN as a living academic CV and to ensure that your research information and publications are always up to date.

There is no need to delay in adding and updating your information in BRIAN.  All the information you add to the current version of BRIAN will be carried across to the new version at the end of the month.

At last! Grant records on BRIAN

BRIANAnother feature of the new version of BRIAN, when it is released later this month, will be the ability to record details of grants.

What makes a grant suitable for inclusion in BRIAN?  Well, it must have been awarded but you can include those that have been completed.  It is advisable to only include grants that are significant such as those from prestigious funders, of significant value, etc.  Courses and conferences are not suitable and so should not be included. 

The reason for the above is that the grant information that you put into BRIAN will be displayed in the new staff profile pages (live in October). 

Another useful feature is that you can mark a grant as a favourite.  Grants marked in this way appear on the home page of your external profile and have increased visibility.

Grant information can be added to BRIAN in the same way as you add publication or professional activity information.   The mandatory information required to enter a grant consists of: PI name, project title, funder name, start and end date, value and status (awarded, in progress or completed).  Other information can also be captured.  Grants can be linked to other BU staff and also to your publications.

More guidance will be provided at the launch of the new version of BRIAN.  In the interim, please give some thought to any grants that would be suitable for your BRIAN profile.

Using BRIAN to record your research activity

BRIANWhen the new version of BRIAN is released later this month, a new Research field will be included.

The research field is intended to be used to capture information on your research projects, themes, areas of interest etc.  Use this field to provide up to date information on your current activities and future plans such as conference presentations, attendance etc.

It is important that you update your research information on a regular basis to ensure your profile page contains the most recent information.  Bi-weekly/weekly updates are ideal.  The research information will appear on the front page of the new staff profile pages so it will be easily visible outside BU.

The maximum number of characters for this information is 2,000.

Here is an example of how a research entry could look:

I am currently conducting a research study examining the use of digital imagery in news reporting during times of crisis.

My most recent book, Great Expectations, was published by Chapman and Hall, in June 2013.

My overseas work is largely based in Peru where I am involved in the evaluation of a community-based project funded by Amantani.  This involves connecting communities, and in particular, school aged children with global changes.  I will be visiting Lima and Arequipa in October ’13 to continue with my research and hope to establish a network with Guayaquil in Ecuador.

I am organising a conference to be held on 13th November 2013 on the ‘Transparency and accountability of journalism’.  Applications for papers to be submitted will be open on 1st October.  More details can be found here: www.journo.conf@BU.ac.uk

If you are interested in journalism in countries in conflict then please contact me for potential collaboration opportunities at joe.bloggs@BU.ac.uk

If you have time in the next couple of weeks, please prepare your research entry so that it can be pasted into BRIAN when the new Research field becomes available.

New look BRIAN

When the new version of BRIAN is released on 23 September 2013, you will notice several improvements in the look and feel of the application.















BRIAN continues to provide information on your publications and professional activities,  With the new version, we will also be introducing the ability for you to enter information on significant grants that you have won.  Look out for more information on grants on Wednesday.

The new BRIAN homepage includes a new navigation menu on the left side of the screen.  The My Profile options presents the information in BRIAN in a CV format and importantly includes the ability to upload and maintain your own profile picture.  You will only be able to upload one picture at a time but you can change your profile pictures as often as you wish. Explore allows you to search the information in BRIAN and save searches for re-use.

We will be showcasing some of the new features of BRIAN in a series of posts this week.  We will also be organising some training in BRIAN on both campuses in early October to help any new or existing BRIAN users get to grips with the application and how it can help you.

If you have any comments, feedback or items you would like us to feature on the blog, please contact us at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk

Tomorrow we will explain the changes being made to the recording of your current research activities in BRIAN.

First Impressions

Let’s face it when BRIAN was launched last year the staff profile pages, which drew information from it and were written in something called VIVO, were less than satisfactory!  Lots of technical problems with the input data from BRIAN and its presentation was not up to BU’s normal standard.  You expressed your concerns in no uncertain terms and we have now put it right.  Working with academic colleagues IT and M&C have worked hard over the summer to construct a completely new interface, not in an obscure computer code but in something we can maintain and evolve easily ourselves.  They have done a brilliant piece of work, so BRIAN has a new set of external clothes and they rock!

After all, first impressions count and the staff pages are a crucial portal through which we present our academic achievements and expertise; and in reverse it is a lens for the world to view and search the wonderful talent that exists here at BU.  The new pages go live at the start of October 2013; they are finished and ready but there is an upgrade to BRIAN due in September which needs to be installed first.

 The improvements include:

 –       A more professional look and feel

–       The opportunity to showcase selected publications

–       Users can upload their own photo (via BRIAN)

–       Improved searching by name, keyword

–       Closer integration with the research themes

–       Fixing the technical problems we have experienced

Since we have developed this interface ourselves here at BU we can develop it further and continue to respond to your feedback.  The BRIAN team are managing the development of the replacement.  If you would like to know more about the project, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

 The staff profile pages will continue to use data drawn from BRIAN so please keep updating your content in BRIAN since a profile is only as good as the input!  There should be no impact on staff during the switch to the new pages, although there may be minor disruption to the availability of the profile pages during the transition.  Let me know what you think of the new pages?

Upgrading BRIAN

In line with our commitment to provide applications that meet users’ and the University’s needs, we will be upgrading BRIAN next month.

The upgrade is scheduled for 23rd September 13.  The upgrade contains a number of improvements.  These include:

–       New, more intuitive look and feel

–       Users can upload their own photos

Importantly for the University, the upgrade includes enhancements that are required for the REF submission due in November.

The upgrade of BRIAN is linked to a new version of the external staff profile pages.  More information on this will be available shortly.

The BRIAN team are managing the upgrade.  If you would like to know more, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

We will keep you posted on the upgrade and how it impacts users in the coming weeks.

How do I…, Why does it…, I can’t seem to…, What just happened?

Here are the latest BRIAN FAQs (BRIAN is BU’s publications managment system and much more), which also include information on the external profile pages (the information input on BRIAN feeds through to your profile page, giving you complete control over the content). 

The FAQs may provide the answer to something that’s been bugging you for a while.   If not, the FAQs include the link to the latest guidance documents and videos so that you can find out more about how to use BRIAN.  

If you still can’t find the answer to your query then please email us at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about BRIAN this week

We are running two BRIAN training sessions on Friday 21st June 2013.  These  are hands-on sessions open to all academics and PGR students who want to learn more about BRIAN.

11:00 – 12:00    Studland House            S103

14:00 – 15:00    Christchurch House       CG21

If you would like to attend, please email David Biggins at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk to reserve your place.

BRIAN Training – 21st June

We are running two BRIAN training sessions on Friday 21st June 2013.  These  are hands-on sessions open to all academics and PGR students who want to learn more about BRIAN.

11:00 – 12:00    Studland House            S103

14:00 – 15:00    Christchurch House       CG21

If you would like to attend, please email David Biggins at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk to reserve your place.

Open access publishing – common minsunderstandings!

open access logo, Public Library of ScienceReflecting on the experience of our recent mock REF exercise I noted that there were some negative views towards open access publishing that were expressed during the process. This is a little concerning considering the UK government is planning to make all outputs arising from publicly-funded research available via open access outlets by 2014 and considering the open access mandates the major research funders have as part of the terms of their grant funding (including the research councils, the Wellcome Trust and the European Commission).  In addition, the four UK funding councils are currently consulting with the sector regarding their proposal to introduce a requirement for all outputs submitted to the post-2014 REF exercise to be published on an open access basis, wherever the concept of open access is relevant.  As an institution and as individual researchers we need to ensure that we are able to comply with these requirements and that we are able to positively embrace open access publishing.

I did a bit of research and came across an excellent article by Peter Suber, Director of the Harvard Open Access Project.  In the article, Peter addresses the common misunderstandings and misconceptions about open access publishing, many of which we part of the concerns raised during the recent mock REF exercises.  I’ve selected the ones I most frequently hear and provided a summary below, and would urge you to read the article in full here – A Field Guide to Misunderstandings About Open Access.

1. “All open access is gold open access” – not at all! Gold open access refers to open access through journals and green open access is via repositories.  Suber notes that researchers often overlook the existence of green open access or think they will not be permitted by their publisher to deposit a copy of their paper in an open source repository.  At BU we have our own institutional repository, BURO, and BU researchers can add the full-text version of their papers via BRIAN.  Suber notes that between 50-70+% of journal publishers give permission for postprint achiving in repositories.  BRIAN will check the copyright of the publisher for you and let you know which version of your paper can be added to BURO. Easy peasy!

2. “Open access is about bypassing peer review” – not true!  The goal of open access is to remove access barriers, not quality filters.  Open access journals can, and usually do, use the same peer review processes, the same standards, and even the same reviewers as traditional print journals.  Many traditional print journals offer an open access route as part of publishing in their journal (hybrid publishing).

3. “Authors must choose between prestigious publication and open access” – incorrect!  There are two reasons why open access is compatible with prestige:  a gold reason and a green one.  First, a growing number of open access journals have already earned high levels of prestige, and others are earning it.  Do your part to move things along as an editor, referee, reader, and as an author, by submitting your best work to suitable open access journals.  In the meantime consider the second reason.  Most traditional print journals allow open access archiving, such as in an institutional repository.

4. “Open access makes sense for second-rate work, but not for first-rate work” – again, not true!   The idea behind this misunderstanding is this:  the best work generally winds up in the best journals, where it has the best chance of being seen.  At least it should be steered toward the best journals, where it will have the best chance of being seen.  When we add the suggestion that this path doesn’t allow open access, or that open access can’t improve upon it, then an idea that was largely true becomes completely false.  It assumes that the best journals are never open access (not true – Nature, Science and IEEE for example all offer open access options); that only journals can deliver open access (not true – green open access); that the best journals never allow open access archiving (not true – see SherpaRomeo, Science for example permits achiving of post-print of the publisher’s PDF); and that open access archiving can’t increase the visibility and impact of work published in the best journals (not true). 

Suber notes 20 other common misunderstandings about open access and his article is well worth reading!

At Bournemouth University we are committed to supporting the open access movement and have been running the BU Open Access Publishing Fund for two years now and will continue into 2013-14.  For information on accessing the Fund please visit this page – BU OAPF.

We’re interested to hear your thoughts on open access publishing!  Have you tried it, are your sceptical, are you a supporter?

Student co-authors to be captured on BRIAN

It is now possible to capture on BRIAN if a BU student has co-authored your publication.  This information is important in monitoring our strategic KPIs. 

If you have any publications which you know a BU student has co-authored, please can you ensure that not only are they in the list of authors for that publication, but that they are also added to the ‘co-author student’ field (it’s as simple as adding a name)?  This will enable the student details to be captured in the publication reports.

Many thanks for your assitance.

New to BRIAN?

If you are new to BU, have missed the Brian training sessions or just need a refresher, the BRIAN team is looking to run some training sessions for academics to help you gain the most from BRIAN.  The session covers how to set up and maintain your BRIAN profile,  how to ensure your details are correct, how to request a photo is uploaded, how BRIAN links to your external staff profile and lots more. 

These are hands-on sessions being run on both the Lansdowne and Talbot Campuses or one-to-one.  To register your interest, please email the BRIAN team (BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk).

New to BRIAN?

If you are new to BU, have missed the Brian training sessions or just need a refresher, the BRIAN team is looking to run some training sessions for academics to help you gain the most from BRIAN.  The session covers how to set up and maintain your BRIAN profile,  how to ensure your details are correct, how to request a photo is uploaded, how BRIAN links to your external staff profile and lots more. 

These are hands-on sessions being run on both the Lansdowne and Talbot Campuses or one-to-one.  To register your interest, please email the BRIAN team (BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk).

BRIAN – Depositing Full Text Articles

Full Text Articles should be uploaded through BRIAN to comply with Bournemouth University Academic Publications Policy on Open Access.

As most publishers allow the Accepted Version of journal articles to be made available this is the version we recommend authors deposit via BRIAN. The Accepted Version is the author-created final version that incorporates referee comments and is accepted for publication. It should not have the publisher’s typesetting or logo applied.

Supplementary files of various file formats can also be deposited as files or as zipped folders.  A listing of publishers, their journals and policy on archiving in BURO is provided by theSHERPA/RoMEO project; see http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo.php.  BURO staff will liaise with the copyright holder regarding the inclusion of full text for other publication types.

Depositing files step by step

When in BRIAN, click on ‘my publications’ to see your full list of publications.  Each record will show a summary screen and below the title of each record you will see a set of six tabs. Click on the ‘Full text’ tab (the second tab from the right).


Click on the link ‘Manage full text’ where it says ‘Manage full text for this publication’.  The File management box will open. Browse and select the file(s) you wish to deposit. Click on Upload’. As indicated above, please include your final version in the first instance.

Books are rarely allowed, although some publishers will permit the use of a sample chapter.  BURO staff can liaise with the publishers on your behalf to check permissions.

Click on ‘Grant’   to confirm you are depositing the file(s) for possible dissemination via BURO. This process does not transfer copyright to BURO.  When you have deposited the files you wish to transfer to BURO click on ‘Home’ in the top left hand corner of the screen to return to your BRIAN profile home page.

If you have any queries about BRIAN, please contact BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk/.  If you require help assessing whether an open access version of your work can be contributed to BURO please contact your Subject Library Team or SAS-BURO@bournemouth.ac.uk.

Academic Profile Pages

Please accept our apologies whilst the Academic Profile Pages are still incorrect.  IT are working on correcting the pages.  There are issues around random question marks and brackets being added to text, as well as names.  Please bear with us whilst the work is carried out on the profile pages and we apologise for any inconvenience caused.