Using the subjects desalination and educational psychology, the scatter of periodical articles over periodical titles was compared at two levels, the second level being a random sample of periodical articles cited by the first level. Several measures were used to compare the extent of scatter at the two levels. Some methods commonly used in bibliometrics produced conflicting evidence on whether the citing literature (first-level) or the cited (second-level) was more scattered. A computer-intensive sampling procedure, known as the Bootstrap method, was then used to estimate the scatter of the total cited population from the scatter of the empirical sample. Cumulative distributions were prepared to show what percentage of periodicals accounted for various percentages of articles at each level of scatter. Only at the 90th percentile of articles did the percentage of periodical titles in the cited literature significantly exceed that of the citing literature. At the tail-end of the Bradford-type distribution, the cited literature appears to be more scattered than the literature citing it.
A study was performed to determine whether the quality of journal articles declines as one moves through successively less productive Bradford zones. Two measures of qualityrate of citation and expert judgement-were used. It was found that articles in the least productive zone were cited significantly less than those in the most productive zone. However, experts did not judge them to be of lesser quality.
Using the field of acid rain research as a case study, it was found that scientists who contribute to the popular literature are more likely than others to be called on to give Congressional testimony (and vice versa) and that the work of these same scientists is well recognized by their peers as judged by rates of citation. Indeed, scientists who contribute to the popular literature are more highly cited than those who do not whether or not they are called upon for expert testimony. Since those who give testimony are more highly cited than those who do not, some evidence also exists that scientists called before Congressional hearings are among those most influential in the science community.
The beginning and early spread of the world-wide epidemic of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) has been paralleled closely by a rapidly expanding literature concerned with many aspects of the disease. In order to assess the growth of the AIDS literature, a quantitative analysis was conducted focusing on the number of articles, the number of journals contributing, the number of languages used, and the number of countries of origin of publications over time (a bibliometric study). The growth of the popular literature was also studied. Three online databases — MEDLINE, Magazine Index, and the National Newspaper Index — were examined from 24 September 1982 (the date the Centers for Disease Control first adopted the name acquired immunodeficiency syndrome) through the end of 1986 for the popular literature and through the end of 1987 for MEDLINE. A survey of the MEDLINE file showed that by the end of 1987, twenty-five languages were represented in articles from fifty-four countries published in 1170 different journal titles.
Authors:F. Lancaster, Maria Porta, Kathryn Plagenz, Krys Szymborski and Marjorie Krebs
A collection of 1316 articles authored by Cuban scientists and published in the period 1950 to 1983 was assembled. The 18 991 bibliographic references in these papers were examined to identify factors that might influence the sources cited by Cuban scientists over the entire period. Degree of collaboration, place of publication and subject matter were among the factors considered. The major objective was to study the effect that the change in political alignment of Cuba (from Western bloc to Eastern bloc influence) has had on the sources cited. It was found that citation to Eastern bloc countries has greatly increased in the period since Castro assumed power. However, no corresponding decline in citation to Western bloc countries can be discerned.
Authors:F. Lancaster, Sun-Yoon Kim Lee and Catalina Diluvio
Two separate studies have looked at the question of whether or not the sources cited by scientists when they publish in their own national journals differ somewhat from the sources they cite when they publish outside their own country. Data derived from studies of Philippine scientists and Korean mathematicians do suggest that place of publication may exert some influence on citation behavior. In particular, a scientist is more likely to cite national sources when publishing in a national journal than when publishing internationally.