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Katy Börner: Atlas of science: visualizing what we know

The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA/London, UK, 2010, US$20

Scientometrics
Author: Loet Leydesdorff
Open access

Abstract

Using aggregated journal–journal citation networks, the measurement of the knowledge base in empirical systems is factor-analyzed in two cases of interdisciplinary developments during the period 1995–2005: (i) the development of nanotechnology in the natural sciences and (ii) the development of communication studies as an interdiscipline between social psychology and political science. The results are compared with a case of stable development: the citation networks of core journals in chemistry. These citation networks are intellectually organized by networks of expectations in the knowledge base at the specialty (that is, above-journal) level. The “structuration” of structural components (over time) can be measured as configurational information. The latter is compared with the Shannon-type information generated in the interactions among structural components: the difference between these two measures provides us with a measure for the redundancy generated by the specification of a model in the knowledge base of the system. This knowledge base incurs (against the entropy law) to variable extents on the knowledge infrastructures provided by the observable networks of relations.

Open access

Abstract

We applied a set of standard bibliometric indicators to monitor the scientific state-of-arte of 500 universities worldwide and constructed a ranking on the basis of these indicators (Leiden Ranking ). We find a dramatic and hitherto largely underestimated language effect in the bibliometric, citation-based measurements of research performance when comparing the ranking based on all Web of Science (WoS) covered publications and on only English WoS covered publications, particularly for Germany and France.

Open access

Abstract

This exploratory study aims at answering the following research question: Are the h-index and some of its derivatives discriminatory when applied to rank social scientists with different epistemological beliefs and methodological preferences? This study reports the results of five Tobit and two negative binomial regression models taking as dependent variable the h-index and six of its derivatives, using a dataset combining bibliometric data collected with the PoP software with cross-sectional data of 321 Quebec social scientists in Anthropology, Sociology, Social Work, Political Science, Economics and Psychology. The results reveal an epistemological/methodological effect making positivists and quantitativists globally more productive than constructivists and qualitativists.

Open access

Abstract

Scientific authorship has important implications in science since it reflects the contribution to research of the different individual scientists and it is considered by evaluation committees in research assessment processes. This study analyses the order of authorship in the scientific output of 1,064 permanent scientists at the Spanish CSIC (WoS, 1994–2004). The influence of age, professional rank and bibliometric profile of scientists over the position of their names in the byline of publications is explored in three different research areas: Biology and Biomedicine, Materials Science and Natural Resources. There is a strong trend for signatures of younger researchers and those in the lower professional ranks to appear in the first position (junior signing pattern), while more veteran or highly-ranked ones, who tend to play supervisory functions in research, are proportionally more likely to sign in the last position (senior signing pattern). Professional rank and age have an effect on authorship order in the three fields analysed, but there are inter-field differences. Authorship patterns are especially marked in the most collaboration-intensive field (i.e. Biology and Biomedicine), where professional rank seems to be more significant than age in determining the role of scientists in research as seen through their authorship patterns, while age has a more significant effect in the least collaboration-intensive field (Natural Resources).

Open access
Scientometrics
Authors: Ludo Waltman, Nees Jan van Eck, Thed N. van Leeuwen, Martijn S. Visser, and Anthony F. J. van Raan

Abstract

We present an empirical comparison between two normalization mechanisms for citation-based indicators of research performance. These mechanisms aim to normalize citation counts for the field and the year in which a publication was published. One mechanism is applied in the current so-called crown indicator of our institute. The other mechanism is applied in the new crown indicator that our institute is currently exploring. We find that at high aggregation levels, such as at the level of large research institutions or at the level of countries, the differences between the two mechanisms are very small. At lower aggregation levels, such as at the level of research groups or at the level of journals, the differences between the two mechanisms are somewhat larger. We pay special attention to the way in which recent publications are handled. These publications typically have very low citation counts and should therefore be handled with special care.

Open access

Abstract

The h-index has received an enormous attention for being an indicator that measures the quality of researchers and organizations. We investigate to what degree authors can inflate their h-index through strategic self-citations with the help of a simulation. We extended Burrell's publication model with a procedure for placing self-citations, following three different strategies: random self-citation, recent self-citations and h-manipulating self-citations. The results show that authors can considerably inflate their h-index through self-citations. We propose the q-index as an indicator for how strategically an author has placed self-citations, and which serves as a tool to detect possible manipulation of the h-index. The results also show that the best strategy for an high h-index is publishing papers that are highly cited by others. The productivity has also a positive effect on the h-index.

Open access

Abstract

Inventions combine technological features. When features are barely related, burdensomely broad knowledge is required to identify the situations that they share. When features are overly related, burdensomely broad knowledge is required to identify the situations that distinguish them. Thus, according to my first hypothesis, when features are moderately related, the costs of connecting and costs of synthesizing are cumulatively minimized, and the most useful inventions emerge. I also hypothesize that continued experimentation with a specific set of features is likely to lead to the discovery of decreasingly useful inventions; the earlier-identified connections reflect the more common consumer situations. Covering data from all industries, the empirical analysis provides broad support for the first hypothesis. Regressions to test the second hypothesis are inconclusive when examining industry types individually. Yet, this study represents an exploratory investigation, and future research should test refined hypotheses with more sophisticated data, such as that found in literature-based discovery research.

Open access

Abstract

This study presents a historical overview of the International Conference on Human Robot Interaction (HRI). It summarizes its growth, internationalization and collaboration. Rankings for countries, organizations and authors are provided. Furthermore, an analysis of the military funding for HRI papers is performed. Approximately 20% of the papers are funded by the US Military. The proportion of papers from the US is around 65% and the dominant role of the US is only challenged by the strong position of Japan, in particular by the contributions by ATR.

Open access

Abstract  

This paper presents a methodology to aggregate multidimensional research output. Using a tailored version of the non-parametric Data Envelopment Analysis model, we account for the large heterogeneity in research output and the individual researcher preferences by endogenously weighting the various output dimensions. The approach offers three important advantages compared to the traditional approaches: (1) flexibility in the aggregation of different research outputs into an overall evaluation score; (2) a reduction of the impact of measurement errors and a-typical observations; and (3) a correction for the influences of a wide variety of factors outside the evaluated researcher’s control. As a result, research evaluations are more effective representations of actual research performance. The methodology is illustrated on a data set of all faculty members at a large polytechnic university in Belgium. The sample includes questionnaire items on the motivation and perception of the researcher. This allows us to explore whether motivation and background characteristics (such as age, gender, retention, etc.,) of the researchers explain variations in measured research performance.

Open access