Q: What is the HEADT Centre?

A: The Humboldt Elsevier Advanced Data & Text (HEADT) Centre is a joint project of Humboldt-Innovation GmbH, the technology transfer office of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and the scientific information provider Elsevier. The HEADT Centre will explore innovative ways to serve researchers and practitioners through new technologies and analytics in the fields of research integrity and text and data mining. It is an independent cooperative venture of Humboldt-Innovation and Elsevier to help researchers and practitioners to excel.

Q: What are the goals and purposes of the HEADT Centre?

A: Through the HEADT Centre, experts from Elsevier and scientists from Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin will explore innovative ways to serve the needs of researchers and practitioners. The Centre´s researchers will help to address pressing issues around text and data mining (TDM) and research integrity.

Q: How did the idea of the HEADT Centre originate?

A: Researchers at Elsevier and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin have been in regular dialogue over the past two years. The idea of the Centre gradually developed as it became clear that there was an alignment with regard to respective future strategies in the field of text and data mining.

Q: What does the HEADT Centre’s organizational structure look like?

A: Johann-Christoph Freytag, Professor for Databases and Information Systems at the Humboldt-Universität and Professor Michael Seadle, Director of the Berlin School of Library and Information Science and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities I at Humboldt-Universität are leading the HEADT Centre on behalf of Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. The HEADT Centre currently consists of two research projects, and an administrative unit, whose function it is to coordinate, and to support future grant applications and national and international collaborations. Prof. Freytag and Prof. Seadle each will head a project within the HEADT Centre. Dr. Flavio Villanustre, Vice President of Technology Architecture and Product for LexisNexis and lead of the High Performance Computing Cluster (HPCC) Systems at Elsevier, and Dr. IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg, Senior Vice President of Research Integrity at Elsevier, are supporting the projects as Elsevier experts. A doctoral student/a post-doc plus a student will assist each project. As part of this collaboration, academics from Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin can explore the idea of initiating research projects. Melanie Rügenhagen will manage the HEADT Centre.

The Centre is implemented by Humboldt-Innovation GmbH, the technology transfer unit of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

Q: What are the first two research projects about?

A: The HEADT Centre will look at research integrity issues such as plagiarism, image manipulation and data falsification and fabrication, which are urgent international challenges for both universities and publishers (Prof. Michael Seadle supported by Dr. IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg). The second project will look at providing scalable infrastructure aimed at improving computer-aided discovery in order to make this kind of information mining more efficient. New algorithms for improving and speeding up similarity searches will be developed (Prof. Johann-Christoph Freytag supported by Dr. Flavio Villanustre).

Q: How does this collaboration benefit German and international scholarship?

A: Difficult scholarly questions can be answered with the help of big data. Therefore, it is important to identify ways in which big data usage can support research productivity. The HEADT Centre will help researchers and the scholarly community to understand better how to exploit text and data mining tools and strategies, and to develop better approaches to question around research integrity and reproducibility.

Q: What are plans for the future?

A: The HEADT Centre will be funded by Elsevier during the first three years with up to 1 Mio EUR in total. It is the purpose of the HEADT Centre to develop and uncover new external funding opportunities and international as well as national collaborations with the intention to become self-sustaining after the first three years.

Q: How is Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin involved in this collaboration?

A: The collaboration will draw on Humboldt-Universität’s data and text research strengths in key areas like digital resources, data quality, semantic web, big data as well as research integrity. On the other hand, Elsevier will provide expertise and value through internal experts and through access to Elsevier’s world-class research data and large scale technology via text and data mining platforms including HPCC Systems and ScienceDirect.

Q: How and why is Elsevier involved in this collaboration?

A: Elsevier is a world-leading provider of scientific, technical and medical information solutions and services. The company believes linking analytics and scientific content is one of the key enablers to serve better scientists and practitioners. Elsevier has made several sizeable investments related to analytics and technology. With the HEADT Centre, Elsevier supports scientific research and finding ways to address issues around research integrity.

Q: Can academics and experts outside of Humboldt-Innovation and Elsevier cooperate with the HEADT Centre?

A: Yes, the HEADT Centre has plans to expand; both partners hope to announce additional projects in the near future.

Q: Will Humboldt-Universität’s existing content and licenses be impacted by this initiative?

A: No.

Q: Will academic freedom be impacted in any way by this collaboration?

A: No, the academic freedom of Humboldt-Universität`s researchers will not be affected in any way by the collaboration. Humboldt-Universität`s researchers working with the HEADT Centre have complete freedom to carry out their work in an academically responsible and transparent manner. The signed contract guarantees academic freedom.

Q: How will results be published? Will Humboldt-Universität´s academics only be able to publish with Elsevier as a result of this collaboration?

A: Researchers at the HEADT Centre will publish their findings in peer-reviewed journals according to normal publishing procedures. Humboldt-Universität´s academics working on HEADT Centre related projects will be free to publish their results in any journal they choose.

Q: How will the HEADT Centre benefit Elsevier? How will it benefit Elsevier customers?

A: Elsevier is transitioning to a provider of digital scientific information and knowledge, and the HEADT Centre is reflecting the strategic intent of Elsevier to develop further solutions to help researchers in academia and industry.

The HEADT Centre works for the good of the research community as a whole, developing analytical methods and approaches, which can be used at the institutional and government level, and contributing to best practice in emerging areas like TDM and research integrity. Researchers, administrators and students worldwide are likely to be impacted positively by this work.

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