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The Use of Bibliometrics to Measure Research Performance in Education Sciences

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  • Andrea Diem

    ()
    (Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SCCRE), Aarau)

  • Stefan C. Wolter

    ()
    (Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SCCRE), Aarau, and University of Bern, CESifo and IZA)

Abstract

This paper investigates the fitness-for-purpose and soundness of bibliometric parameters for measuring and elucidating the research performance of individual researchers in the field of education sciences in Switzerland. In order to take into account the specificities of publication practices of researchers in education sciences, the analyses are based on two separate databases: Web of Science and Google Scholar. Both databases show a very unequal distribution of the individual research output, and the indicators used to measure research performance (quantity of publications and citation impact) from the two data sources are highly positively correlated. However, individual characteristics of the researchers, such as age, gender and academic position, that serve to explain the great variance in research performance, can only be identified if the Web of Science is used as a benchmark of research performance. The results indicate that Google Scholar is so inclusive that it impedes a meaningful interpretation of the data. However, the Web of Science inclusion policy for journals is also associated with certain shortcomings that put some researchers at an unjustified disadvantage. Therefore, problems currently exist in regard to both citation databases when used to benchmark individual research performance.

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File URL: http://repec.business.uzh.ch/RePEc/iso/leadinghouse/0066_lhwpaper.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU) in its series Economics of Education Working Paper Series with number 0066.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision: May 2013
Publication status: published
Handle: RePEc:iso:educat:0066

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Keywords: bibliometrics; education sciences; research performance; scientometric methods; science research;

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  1. Michael Rauber & Heinrich Ursprung, 2007. "Life Cycle and Cohort Productivity in Economic Research: The Case of Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 2093, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Gonzalez-Brambila, Claudia & Veloso, Francisco M., 2007. "The determinants of research output and impact: A study of Mexican researchers," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(7), pages 1035-1051, September.
  3. Günther G. Schulze & Susanne Warning & Christian Wiermann, 2008. "Zeitschriftenrankings für die Wirtschaftswissenschaften - Konstruktion eines umfassenden Metaindexes," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 9(3), pages 286-305, 08.
  4. Michael Graber & Andrey Launov & Klaus Wälde, 2008. "Publish or Perish? The Increasing Importance of Publications for Prospective Economics Professors in Austria, Germany and Switzerland," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 9, pages 457-472, November.
  5. Levin, Sharon G & Stephan, Paula E, 1991. "Research Productivity over the Life Cycle: Evidence for Academic Scientists," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 114-32, March.
  6. De Witte, K. & Rogge, N., 2010. "To publish or not to publish? On the aggregation and drivers of research performance," Working Papers 33, Top Institute for Evidence Based Education Research.
  7. Robert Hofmeister & Heinrich W. Ursprung, 2008. "Das Handelsblatt Ökonomen-Ranking 2007: Eine kritische Beurteilung," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 9(3), pages 254-266, 08.
  8. Klaus Ritzberger, 2008. "Eine invariante Bewertung wirtschaftswissenschaftlicher Fachzeitschriften," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 9(3), pages 267-285, 08.
  9. Panaretos, John & Malesios, Chrisovaladis, 2008. "Assessing scientific research performance and impact with single indices," MPRA Paper 12842, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Karol Paludkiewicz & Klaus Wohlrabe, 2010. "Qualitätsanalyse von Zeitschriften in den Wirtschaftswissenschaften – über Zitationsdatenbanken und Impaktfaktoren im Online-Zeitalter," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 63(21), pages 18-28, November.
  11. Carayol, Nicolas & Matt, Mireille, 2006. "Individual and collective determinants of academic scientists' productivity," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 55-72, March.
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