The Connected Leiden Researcher

Tips and Tricks with Coen van Hasselt

Tips and Tricks with Coen van Hasselt

Coen van Hasselt is a pharmacology researcher at the Leiden Academic Centre for Drug Research. Coen was one of the researchers Leiden University Libraries interviewed last year as part of a survey on reference manager use. As he was one of the enthusiastic Mendeley users, when the time came for this month's interview he seemed like a logical choice. I was especially curious to find out why he chose Mendeley over any of the other reference managers availabe.

Why Mendeley? Why not any of the other available reference managers, such as Zotero and EndNote?

I am using Mendely since 2009 because of features such as cross-platform availability (e.g. Windows/Linux/Mac), synchronization of references and PDFs across devices, and LaTeX support. And of course the fact that it is free software. There is also a paid version which offers a bit more space for PDFs and more shared groups, but I don’t need those features. Endnote and reference manager don’t have these features and are also not free.  At the time of choosing a reference manager Mendeley’s features appeared a bit better than Zotero, although I guess it is a close call.

What value does it add for you?

I work from a couple of different computers/locations. The task of having access to collected articles and allowing to add them to manuscripts works perfectly using Mendeley, so I guess this is its main value to me.

How does Mendeley work for you?

I add publications either from PubMed or publishers website to my Mendeley library mostly using the ‘add-to-mendeley’ button in my web browser. I usually order/sort articles by adding them to folders associated with specific projects (one article can be in multiple folders).  For most publications I also add the PDF. When writing reviews I usually add some notes to the reference to add some key points of the publication. I sometimes use the functions in Mendeley to mark or annotate key points in the PDF of an article.

Do you use any other social media as part of your professional activities?

I am using Research Gate. I am not really using any of the social media features of Mendeley.

Tips? Tricks?

Not really. Mostly everything is pretty straightforward!

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