In this part of the course on Research impacts we will outline some ideas about the EUR Impact Monitor: a combination of metrics from several sources to do more justice to the different publication cultures of EUR disciplines and research areas.
Pilots at the EUR
In 2010 and 2011 two internal pilots took place to visualize publication cultures of the last ten years. The first one focused on the disciplines Sociology and Public Administration of the Faculty of Social Sciences, later followed by the faculties ESHCC (Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication, ESL (Erasmus School of Law), FW (Faculty of Philosophy) and iBMG (Institute of Health Policy & Management). The basic source was METIS, the research information database used at the EUR, complemented by data from Web of Science, Scopus and Google Scholar.
At the same time an external pilot took place: the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) at Leiden University was asked to perform a bibliometric analysis of the output in the humanities and law areas, based on Web of Science.
Because publication cultures in the social sciences tend to focus more on monographs, book chapters, reports and - in the field of law - on annotations and commentaries, we also looked at the following databases to see where these kinds of output would be more visible: Scopus, Google Scholar, OCLC WorldCat, LexisNexis and IkRegeer.
Furthermore a number of additional sources was identified to generate more reliable benchmarks, like Philosophers Index, Sociological Abstracts, Internet Law Library, Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN) - all to be found on the databases list of the UL website -, Boom Publishers, European Reference Index for the Humanities (ERIH - visibility mechanism and evaluation tool) and SciVal, a tool to generate benchmark reports from Scopus.
These pilots were thoroughly discussed with all parties concerned:
- for the Woudestein disciplines Web of Science offered too little coverage to act as a reliable measurement tool for research impact;
- for Sociology and Public administration Scopus was a meaningful additional source for benchmark indicators;
- for the faculties ESHCC, ESL, FW and iBMG additional sources are necessary to get more representative data;
- Data input in METIS is not centralized at the EUR, what makes it difficult to use it as a reliable source. METIS should be 'cleaned' retrospectively.
- Generally: there's a great need for data curation and integrity.
To tackle these kinds of problems, the contours of a EUR Impact Monitor are presently being developed.