Who Shares Health and Medical Scholarly Articles on Facebook?

Document Type



Over a million journal articles had been shared on public Facebook pages by 2017, but little is known about who is sharing (posting links to) these papers and whether mention counts could be an impact indicator. This study classified users who had posted about 749 links on Facebook before October 2017 mentioning 500 medical and health-related research articles, obtained using data. Most accounts (68%) belonged to groups, including online communities, journals, academic organizations, and societies. Of individual profiles, academics accounted for only 4%, but the largest group were health care professionals (16%). More than half (58%) of all Facebook accounts examined were not academic. The non-academic dominance suggests that public Facebook posts linking to health-related articles are mostly used to facilitate scientific knowledge flow between non-academic professionals and the public. Therefore, Facebook mention counts may be a combined academic and non-academic attention indicator in the health and medical domains.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

APA Citation

Mohammadi, E., Barahmand, N., & Thelwall, M. (2020). Who shares health and medical scholarly articles on Facebook?. Learned Publishing, 33(2), 111-118.