Measuring and promoting the success of an Open Science discovery platform through “compass indicators”: the GoTriple case

Stefano De Paoli*, Emilie Blotière, Paula Forbes, Sona Arasteh-Roodsary

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Previous research on indicators for measuring the success of Open Science tends to operate at a macro/global level and very rarely addresses the need to measure success at the level of a single project. However, this previous research has the merit of arguing for the definition of indicators that offer an alternative to more traditional bibliometric measures or indicators that focus on mere performance. This paper is the outcome of work conducted for a specific project that aims to build a discovery platform for social sciences and humanities, the platform GoTriple. GoTriple is designed taking inspiration from Open Science principles and has been built through a user-centered approach. The paper details the practice-led work conducted by the GoTriple team for assessing the meaning of the term success for the project and to identify indicators. To this end, this paper proposes the concept of compass indicators and presents how the project team arrived at the definition of this concept. The paper also highlights a distinction between compass indicators, which are modest measures, and key performance indicators, which tend to be tied up with measurable objectives. Compass indicators are defined as indicators that do not aim to achieve a specified numerical target of success but rather explain the journey of a project toward achieving certain desirable outcomes and offer insights to take action. Compass indicators defined for the project embrace areas such as diversity, inclusivity, collaboration, and the general use of the platform. In the final discussion, the paper offers reflections on the potential relevance of the notion of compass indicators and closes with a discussion of the next steps for this work.
Original languageEnglish
Article number49
Number of pages25
Issue number4
Early online date8 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2022


  • Indicators
  • Open science
  • Discovery
  • Diversity
  • User
  • Social sciences
  • Humanities


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