How Profiles Works

UCSF Profiles enables the discovery of research expertise at UCSF, allowing new ways to network and collaborate between researchers, between mentors and mentees, between researchers and community or industry partners, and more.

Whether you are a UCSF faculty member, trainee, staff member, or otherwise contribute to the UCSF research community, we encourage you to explore UCSF Profiles and use it to build and maintain your network of research colleagues.

Please share your feedback about how to improve UCSF Profiles, and let us know if UCSF Profiles has enabled your research in any way. Your success stories are important to enable the continued support and expansion of this important tool.

Information about UCSF Profiles

When you view a person's profile, you will see:

Information about the individual

At a minimum, an individual's profile will include the person's name, degrees and basic contact information (sourced from the UCSF Directory).

Profile owners can edit and enhance their own profiles by providing a research narrative, a photo, awards, links to other sites, etc.

Any published articles available in PubMed are listed, and Profile owners can add additional publications.
Networks & other information about the individual's research

If the individual has publications available from PubMed, UCSF Profiles builds and displays networks related to their research.

Lists of research concepts/topics based on PubMed "meSH" terms


Researchers working on the same topics

People working in the same department

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is listed in UCSF Profiles?

  • UCSF Profiles was created for research networking so we initially focused on adding UCSF faculty members, researchers with academic leadership appointments, residents, postdoctoral scholars and non-faculty academic researchers.
  • We are expanding UCSF Profiles to include research staff, individuals and additional groups in the UCSF community, as requested.
  • Profile creation requires that an individual's data be in the UCSF Campus Locator System. If you are a UCSF employee and do not have a profile, request yours now by sending us your UCSF Employee ID.

Who can view UCSF Profiles?

  • UCSF Profiles is searchable on the web and can be viewed by the general public as well as the UCSF community.

How do I edit and enhance my individual profile?

  • To edit your individual profile, click the Login/Edit My Profile link in the menu bar. You will be prompted to login with your MyAccess account.
  • Your profile is divided into several sections: directory information (not editable in Profiles), photo, awards and honors, overview, keywords (a new feature!!) and publications.
    • For directory information, UCSF Profiles uses Campus Locator System data (name, degrees, and contact information). Changes to this information should be directed to the Payroll/Personnel Analyst for your UCSF campus department. If unsure who this person is, contact your department's Business Officer.
    • You can upload a photo and also add/edit awards and your narrative.
    • Keywords are research topics that you can add or edit yourself. These are searchable from within UCSF Profiles, so if you're focusing on a new area of research and haven't published a paper on it yet, people can still find you if they search using that term.
    • Publications are automatically added from PubMed, and you can also add other publications yourself.
  • Contact us if you have questions about editing your profile.

How do I login to UCSF Profiles?

Click the Login/Edit My Profile link on any UCSF Profiles page. Then enter your MyAccess username and password.

Why should I login to UCSF Profiles?

  • Many special UCSF Profiles features are available only if you're logged-in. These include:
    • Create a group of individuals based on search results. This group can then then be used to create a UCSF Chatter Group or to export information about these individuals. (Accessing the group's emails is by special permission only. Please email us to request permission.)
    • Follow someone on UCSF Chatter directly from his/her profile.
    • Export a list of an individual's publications.
  • In addition, you can edit your profile and manage your designated proxies only if you're logged in.

What are the sources of data for UCSF Profiles?

  • All data in automatically generated profiles are currently available on other public websites, specifically the UCSF Directory, PubMed, and NIH RePORTER.
    • Contact information is obtained from the Campus Locator System, which also feeds the central UCSF Directory. This information is updated weekly.
    • Publications are derived from the MEDLINE/PubMed citation database. These are retrieved monthly.
    • Grant information from NIH RePORTER is updated monthly.
  • Narrative and other personalized data is entered by the profile owner or a designated proxy.

What are the lists of networks on the right side of my profile?

  • The lists at the right side of a profile page provide additional information about the individual. The first three lists are based on MeSH terms assigned to the individual's publications by the National Library of Medicine.
    • "Related Concepts" includes the top five research concepts derived from publications' MeSH terms. There is also a link to show all the concepts associated with this individual.
    • "Co-Authors" includes those who have published with this individual.
    • "Similar People" includes people who have research concepts/MeSH terms in common with this individual.
  • Department lists are determined from Campus Locator System data (see data sources above) and reflect people in the same department.

Why are there missing or incorrect publications in my profile? How can I correct this?

  • UCSF Profiles uses a complex mix of names, institution, and manually entered publication information to find your publications in PubMed's repository. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to exactly match all articles in PubMed with complete precision and accuracy. The algorithm used to find articles from PubMed attempts to minimize the number of publications incorrectly added to a profile; however, this method may result in some missing or incorrectly listed publications.
  • People with common names or whose articles were written at other institutions are most likely to have incomplete publication lists.
  • You can make corrections by manually searching PubMed from within Profiles to add, edit or delete publications (see How do I edit my Profile? above). By curating publications manually, you are helping UCSF Profiles to identify which concepts are associated with your profile and increasing the likelihood of finding the right publications on subsequent attempts.
  • We encourage you to login to the site and add any missing publications or remove incorrect ones.

How frequently are the data in UCSF Profiles updated?

  • Changes made to your primary campus information via your HR representative, such as names, degrees, and contact information, are automatically updated once a week.
  • Publications from PubMed are updated monthly.
  • Changes made to a profile manually will be reflected within minutes.

Can I add/edit my keywords?

  • Yes! You can enter keywords when you are editing your profile. These are useful to indicate research topics or fields in which you haven't yet published. Users who search UCSF Profiles by these topics will find your profile.
  • The new keyword feature is different from the concepts associated to your publications (MeSH terms derived by the National Library of Medicine), are not editable. However, you can ensure these are accurate by keeping your publications up to date. Please note that it can take up to 24 hours for the system to update your keywords, co-authors, and similar people after you have modified your publications.

Can I edit my co-authors or similar people lists?

  • These networks are derived from the MeSH terms automatically. Keeping your publications accurate and up to date will improve these networks. However, they can't be edited directly.

How can I learn more about UCSF Profiles?

  • Read more about the UCSF Profiles tool, ongoing development and exciting collaborations.
  • If you have specific questions not answered here, please contact us.

Where should I send my ideas on how to improve the tool?

  • We encourage you to get in touch with your ideas on how to improve UCSF Profiles. We especially look forward to hearing from you if Profiles has enabled your research in any way. Your success stories allow us to continue to build on such tools and to continue to get support.
  • To tell us how we're doing or for questions please send a note to profiles@ucsf.edu.

What are the system requirements for using UCSF Profiles?

  • UCSF Profiles works best using any of the following web browsers:
    • Internet Explorer 8 or 9
    • Firefox 12 or later
    • Chrome
    • Safari 5 or later
  • If you are using an older browser or a browser not listed above, you may experience some errors in functionality.

Who manages UCSF Profiles?

UCSF Profiles is managed by the Virtual Home program of UCSF's Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI).

Contributors & Thanks!


  • The CTSI Virtual Home team
  • The ITS MyAccess and Data teams

At Harvard:

  • Harvard Medical School, Harvard Catalyst, and Griffin Weber, MD, PhD


This service is made possible by the Profiles Research Networking Software developed under the supervision of Griffin M Weber, MD, PhD, with support from Grant Number 1 UL1 RR025758-01 to Harvard Catalyst: The Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center from the National Center for Research Resources and support from Harvard University and its affiliated academic healthcare centers.