ERIC Number: EJ834385
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Reference Count: 5
Commentary on "Measurement of Central Aspects of Scientific Research"
Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, v3 n1 p29-32 Jan 2005
This article presents the author's critique on "Measurement of Central Aspects of Scientific Research: Performance, Interdisciplinarity, Structure," by Anthony F. J. van Raan. It also presents a summary of recent work by the Leiden bibliometrics group, which van Raan has led so ably for more than 15 years. The group has established an excellent reputation for the thorough way in which it sets about the quantitative analysis of publications and for the new methods of working that it has pioneered. A particular strength of the group is that its work is focused very much on practical matters--solving real problems of research evaluation for sponsors and research performers. Its work has meant that quantitative indicators are now well accepted in many quarters as an important adjunct to peer review. Indeed, they may provide an objective measure of research capability that is closer to the truth than the sometimes biased or partial views of review committees or individual referees. Here, the author addresses four shortcomings of this article. These are: (1) it almost totally neglects the methodological advances made in recent years by other groups, especially in the delineation of subfields; (2) it makes little mention of the need for statistical rigor in bibliometric analysis; (3) the analysis of self-citations needs more consideration; and (4) the mapping of science onto a two-dimensional surface is somewhat involved and does not provide the insights that are sometimes claimed.
Descriptors: Bibliometrics, Scientific Research, Methods, Statistical Analysis, Citation Analysis, Measurement
Psychology Press. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A