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  • Author or Editor: B. Martin x
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Abstract  

This paper argues that evaluations of basic research are best carried out using a range of indicators. After setting out the reasons why assessments of government-funded basic research are increasingly needed, we examine the multi-dimensional nature of basic research. This is followed by a conceptual analysis of what the different indicators of basic research actually measure. Having discussed the limitations of various indicators, we describe the method of converging partial indicators used in several SPRU evaluations. Yet although most of those who now use science indicators would agree that a combination of indicators is desirable, analysis of a sample ofScientometrics articles suggests that in practice many continue to use just one or two indicators. The paper also reports the results of a survey of academic researchers. They, too, are strongly in favour of research evaluations being based on multiple indicators combined with peer review. The paper ends with a discussion as to why multiple indicators are not used more frequently.

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In previous articles, the author and his colleagues have shown that British science declined relative to other countries during the 1970 and more slowly during the early 1980s. More recently, the author examined figures for 1981–85 produced by the Information Science and Scientometrics Research Unit (ISSRU) and showed that they were consistent with other evidence on Britain's relative decline. However, those latter findings and the methodology used to derive them have been criticised byBraun and his colleagues at ISSRU, and byLeydesdorff andKealey. This paper begins by examining these criticisms to establish whether there are any grounds for revising the previous conclusion that British science has been slipping in relation to other countries. It then analyses the latest publication and citation statistics. It also presents new data on highly cited papers and on the national distribution of Nobel Prizes. The paper concludes that, although a few isolated indicators might be taken to suggest that British science has been growing in some absolute sense, the great weight of evidence points to a continuing relative decline.

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In 1987, an analysis of the CHI/NSFScience Literature Indicators Data-Base by the author and his colleagues suggested that the UK's percentage share of the world publication and citation totals had continued to fall over 1981–84, although at a slower rate than previously. That finding has recently been challenged byBraun, Glänzel andSchubert who, by combining 28 publication-based indicators, concluded that there was no statistically significant evidence for such a decline. This paper examines the reasons for the discrepancy. It is argued that the methodology ofBraun et al. is seriously flawed, as well as being inconsistent with work that they have published elsewhere. By adopting a more consistent and realistic set of indicators and applying them to the data ofBraun et al., one arrives at results entirely consistent with those derived from the CHI/NSF data-base.

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This paper presents a methodological analysis of the latest update of the CHI/NSF Science Literature Indicators Data-Base. The data-base contains a range of publication and citation indicators borken down by country and field or subfield, and now convers the period from 1973 to 1984. It can be used to draw comparisons of the changing output and impact of basic research in different countries. Earlier applications of the data-base have been constrained by various technical limitations, and have been subject to certain criticism. In this article, after some conceptual analysis of what aspects of scientific performance the different indicators relate to, we show that much of the criticism is misplaced. We also describe subsequent methodological improvements to the indicators and the effect these have on the policy use that can be made. Finally, we examine what the latest statistics reveal about the relative international standing of seven leading scientific nations.

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After explaining the reasons why science policy-makers face a growing need for more rigorous forms of research evaluation, we outline an approach combining bibliometric and peer-evaluation data that has been developed at the Science Policy Research Unit in the course of a programme of studies of Big Science specialties. The paper describes the results obtained when this method of converging partial indicators is applied to compared the past research performance of the accelerators at CERN — the joint European Laboratory for Particle Physics — with that of the world's other main accelerators. The paper concludes by demonstrating how, on the basis of an analysis of the factors that have structured research performance in the past, it is possible to arrive at a systematic set of conclusions about the future prospects for a major new research facility such as an accelerator.

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This paper presents the results of a study of Britain's scientific performance in the fields of ocean currents and protein crystallography carried out for the Advisory Board for the Research Councils (ABRC). Using a range of publication and citation indicators, the study aimed to explore the potential value to science policy-making of low-cost scientometric approaches to research evaluation.

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The spiral plate heat exchanger (SHE) is widely used in plenty of industrial services in full counter current flow liquid-liquid heat exchange. We have produced a thermal modelling of the heat exchanges in both steady-state and time dependent cases with 2D spiral geometry, allowing computation with different materials, forced convective heat transfer models in turbulent flow and geometrical parameters options. We will display here some results in steady-state conditions in order to improve the exchanger performances.

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Calorimetric measurements were made of the heat of immersion in water of cassiterite that was either untreated or treated with 60% HNO3. The heats of immersion of cassiterite and fluorite were also calculated theoretically from the surface Gibbs energy components, and compared with the heat of immersion measured for cassiterite and that taken from the literature for fluorite. The results of the measurements and calculation revealed that the heat of immersion depends on the degree of hydration of the surface of cassiterite and fluorite. It was also found that it is possible to predict the heats of immersion in water of cassiterite and fluorite from the Lifshitz-van der Waals and acid-base components of the surface Gibbs energy.

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