Author: Daniel Cabrera

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Alternative media and metrics for academic promotion.

By Daniel Cabrera (@CabreraERDR)

The moral and societal duty of an academic physician is to advance science, improve the care of his/her patients and share knowledge. Part of this role requires physicians to inform the public debate, responsibly influence policy and help translate complex practice for the public. As Clinician Educators our job is not to create knowledge obscura, trapped in ivory towers and only accessible to the enlightened; the knowledge we create and manage needs to impact our communities.

Academic Promotions and Tenure Committees in our institutions are charged with ensuring that the scholarly work of faculty impacts the academy. These committees aim to provide a promotion system rewarding the influence and significance of research, clinical care and education. The committees reward consistency and excellence.

The current scholarly publication citation system is a surrogate for this impact. The idea of creating an “impact factor” is to