How to find the most interesting papers?

In summary: Look up papers that are in the same subfield as the interesting papers5. Look up papers that use the same method or tool as the interesting papers6. Look up papers that are about the same topic as the interesting papers7. Look up papers about related topics8. Look up papers by people I know9. Look up papers by people I don't know10. Try to find papers that are published in a different year or are an unusual or unknown genre
  • #1
Vrbic
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18
Hello,
I'm a Ph.D. student of Astrophysics and I would like to expand my horizons in this field. The best is probably to read papers around. I don't mean just new ones. But how to effectively find papers from my field when there are so many papers for example at https://arxiv.org/ or http://adswww.harvard.edu/.
I believe that many experienced scientists are reading many papers (at least abstracts or results). Please advise me how are you effectively looking for the most interesting for you.
Thank you.
 
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  • #2
Your supervisor should know what papers are relevant for you. Have you asked him/her?
 
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  • #3
Orodruin said:
Your supervisor should know what papers are relevant for you. Have you asked him/her?
Yes, I read what he suggests, but I would like to do something more (to be more independent in a good sense), but don't spend comparable time for searching as for reading.
 
  • #4
Read. A lot.

As a PhD student you should have a handful of journals that you read on a regular basis. By that I mean you get an email when a new issue of each of your regular journals is out, you skim through the abstracts, and then read those articles that interest you.

And when you have a cluster of friends and colleagues who are doing this - talk to each other. Many of the most interesting papers I've found have been from someone else who saw something they thought I would find interesting.

Another option is to join or start a journal club.
 
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  • #5
I don't think there is an objective criteria for interesting.

But once I find a few papers that are interesting to me I take several approaches to find more:
1. Look up other papers by the same author(s)
2. Look up papers that the interesting papers cite
3. Look up later papers that cite the interesting papers
 
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Related to How to find the most interesting papers?

1. How do I know which papers are considered the most interesting?

There is no definitive answer to this question as what is considered interesting can vary from person to person. However, some factors that can contribute to a paper being considered interesting include its relevance to current events or trends in the field, its potential impact on future research, and its novelty or uniqueness compared to previous studies.

2. What sources can I use to find the most interesting papers?

There are several sources you can use to find interesting papers, such as academic databases, search engines, and social media platforms. You can also attend conferences and workshops in your field to discover new and exciting research.

3. How can I narrow down my search for interesting papers?

One way to narrow down your search is by using keywords related to your specific research interests. You can also use filters such as publication date, journal impact factor, and citation count to find the most relevant and highly regarded papers in your field.

4. Can I rely on the number of citations to determine the most interesting papers?

While a high number of citations can indicate that a paper is influential in the field, it should not be the sole factor in determining its level of interest. Some highly cited papers may not necessarily be the most interesting to you, and vice versa. It is important to read and critically evaluate the content of a paper to determine its level of interest.

5. How can I stay updated on the most interesting papers in my field?

You can stay updated by regularly checking academic databases and following relevant journals and researchers on social media. You can also join online communities or attend conferences to discuss and share interesting papers with your peers.

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