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  • 1 Medical Library, Aalborg Hospital, Aarhus University Hospital, Aalborg, Denmark
  • | 2 Royal School of Library and Information Science, Aalborg E, Denmark
  • | 3 Department of ALM (Archives, Libraries & Museums), University of Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden
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Abstract

This paper studies the production of dissertations in eight research fields in the natural sciences, the social sciences and the humanities. In using doctoral dissertations it builds on De Solla Prices seminal study which used PhD dissertations as one of several indicators of scientific growth (Price, Little science, big science, ). Data from the ProQuest: Dissertations and Theses database covering the years 1950–2007 are used to depict historical trends, and the Gompertz function was used for analysing the data. A decline in the growth of dissertations can be seen in all fields in the mid-eighties and several fields show only a modest growth during the entire period. The growth profiles of specific disciplines could not be explained by traditional dichotomies such as pure/applied or soft/hard, but rather it seems that the age of the discipline appears to be an important factor. Thus, it is obvious that the growth of dissertations must be explained using several factors emerging both inside and outside academia. Consequently, we propose that the output of dissertations can be used as an indicator of growth, especially in fields like the humanities, where journal or article counts are less applicable.

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Manuscript submission: http://www.editorialmanager.com/scim/

  • Impact Factor (2019): 2.867
  • Scimago Journal Rank (2019): 1.210
  • SJR Hirsch-Index (2019): 106
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Computer Science Apllications
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Library and Information Sciences
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Impact Factor (2018): 2.770
  • Scimago Journal Rank (2018): 1.113
  • SJR Hirsch-Index (2018): 95
  • SJR Quartile Score (2018): Q1 Library and Information Sciences
  • SJR Quartile Score (2018): Q1 Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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Scientometrics
Language English
Size B5
Year of
Foundation
1978
Volumes
per Year
4
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)