[Miscellany] LinkedIn as a research tool, tips for writing non-fiction, and reading at the dinner table

  1. LinkedIn as a research tool and source of insight

Much has been written about the value of Twitter, Facebook and review platforms (e.g., Trip Advisor) as sources of insight (for instance, about customers and their habits). Yet, LinkedIn is not usually thought of in the same pool of useful research tools.


LinkedIn can be a great source of insight about your competitors – for instance, studying the profiles of their newest recruits can give us insight into changes in strategic direction, as I wrote here. And, according to this post by Dr Daniela Duca, in the LSE Impact Blog, LinkedIn can also be used to:

  • Find and recruit participants for research and experiments
  • Study people’s behaviour and identity
  • Study how data is used for hiring and recruiting purposes
  • Complement other data sources


LinkedIn doesn’t make it easy for researchers to use their data. For instance, the API’s terms and conditions specify that it can’t be used to collect data for research purposes. Nonetheless, this could be a very valuable source. Do check Duca’s post, if you want to learn more about the data available and how to use them.



  1. Tips for writing non-fiction

Those of us keen to make academic writing more accessible and interesting to the general public, may find the tips shared in this short (around 15 mans) podcast useful. It was produced by the team behind the Nine Dots prize.


The podcast is focused on those intending to submit to the Nine Dots Prize. However, I think that the advice is relevant generally. It includes tips on style, getting the reader’s attention, using personal examples, when to edit, productivity, etc…



  1. Books at the dinner table

These holidays, we drifted into the habit of reading a book, while we were waiting for our meals to arrive, at the restaurant. Definitely not the best table manners. Maybe even not the best parenting skills. But I loved this habit: a peaceful moment in the day, and made the waiting time fly by.



I am now focused on some preparation work for a bid that I am intending to submit, and which is due in the middle of August. What does the week have in store for you?

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