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Bibliometric analysis - A new business area for information professionals in libraries?

Support for scientific research by perception and trend analysis

Scientometrics
Authors: Rafael Ball and Dirk Tunger

Summary  

Supplying library users with literature by a seamless linking of media is the goal of (scientific) libraries. By the digitization of primary and secondary data and the convergence of products and providers, libraries have already come very close to achieving this ideal. A digital library is the realization of this goal. However, many librarians are in danger of running out of imagination. What will come after the digital library? Will information professionals still be needed? What services can libraries offer? Bibliometric analysis is an example of new business areas in libraries. This paper will discuss what shape this service could take in practice, who needs it and what target groups exist in the scientific environment. Concrete examples of bibliometric analysis from the Central Library of Research Centre Jlich will round off the overview.

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Abstract  

A form of normalisation is presented for the evaluation of citation data on multidisciplinary research. This method is based on the existing classification according to the publishing journals and not on the classification of output according to ISI subject categories. A publication profile is created for each institution to be investigated. This profile accounts for the weight of publications in a journal, represented by the number of publications as a proportion of the total output of the institution. In accordance with this weight, the citation rate of each journal is compared to a qualified relative indicator. The final result is a relative citation rate J, which is the relative perception of the performance of an institution accounting for its publication and citation habits and makes a transdisciplinary comparison possible.

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Abstract

This paper describes the different forms of and tries to give reasons for international scientific collaboration in general. It focuses on eleven countries in the Asia–Pacific region by evaluating their national research output with the help of bibliometric indicators in particular. Over two million journal articles published by these countries between 1998 and 2007 in ISI-listed periodicals are analyzed. Discipline-specific publication and citation profiles reveal national strengths and weaknesses in the different research domains. The exponential increase in publication output by China over the last few years is astonishing, but in terms of visibility, i.e. citation rates, China cannot keep up with leading science nations, remaining below the world average. A discipline-specific analysis shows that Chinese authors took an active part in more than a quarter of all articles and reviews published in the field of materials science in 2007, while their contribution to medical research is very low. Co-publication networks among the eleven countries are generated to observe the development of cooperation bonds in the region. Applying Salton's measure of international collaboration strength, an above-average strengthening of scientific collaboration in the Asia–Pacific region can be observed.

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