Authors:
Daisy Jacobs University of Transkei Department of Chemistry Umtata Republic of South Africa Umtata Republic of South Africa

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Peter Ingwersen

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Abstract  

The paper is a bibliometric study of the publication patterns and impact of South African scientists 1981–96, with special emphasis on the period 1992–96. The subject fields surveyed are Physics; Chemistry, Plant and Animal Sciences; and Biochemistry/Microbiology. Scientists were selected from the ten universities of the Eastern Cape, Western Cape and KwaZulu Natal, which vary considerably, with respect to standards of education, quantity of publications, development and overall progress. The general purpose is two-fold: 1) to observe the publication and citation trends during 1981–96, a period which covers significant policy changes in the country, in particular the end of apartheid 1994; within this context 2) to investigate the patterns used by scientists 1992–96 from these different institutions in publishing the results of their research in the form of conference papers or (inter)national journals. The study collected two sets of data through a scientometric analysis of Science Citation Index and a questionnaire. With the exception of Physics, the results demonstrate a decreasing South African world share, in particular for Plant & Animal Sc. publications, and a similar decline of citations starting in 1986/87. Further, the citation impact relative to the world, after a substantial drop 1985–93 probably representing the international embargo period, in 1994–96 reaches the same level as observed in 1985–89. Also, the study shows that there is a direct relation between academic position, research experience and productivity among South African Scientists in the four scientific disciplines.

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Scientometrics
Language English
Size B5
Year of
Foundation
1978
Volumes
per Year
1
Issues
per Year
12
Founder Akadémiai Kiadó
Founder's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Publisher Akadémiai Kiadó
Springer Nature Switzerland AG
Publisher's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
CH-6330 Cham, Switzerland Gewerbestrasse 11.
Responsible
Publisher
Chief Executive Officer, Akadémiai Kiadó
ISSN 0138-9130 (Print)
ISSN 1588-2861 (Online)