The Merits of Using Citations to Measure Research Output in Economics Departments: The New Zealand Case
AbstractIn this paper we explore the merits of utilizing citation counts to measure research output in economics in the context of a nation-wide research evaluation scheme. We selected one such system for study: the New Zealand government’s Programme-Based Research Fund (PBRF). Citations were collected for all refereed papers produced by New Zealand’s academic economists over the period 2000 to 2008 using the databases of the ISI/Web of Science and, to a limited extent, Google Scholar. These data allowed us to estimate the time lags in economics between publication of an article and the flow of citations; to demonstrate the impact of alternative definitions of ‘economics-relevant’ journals on citation counts; and to assess the impact of direct citation measures and alternative schemes on departmental and individual performance. Our findings suggest that the time-lags between publication and citing are such that it would be difficult to rely on citations counts to produce a meaningful measure of output in a PBRF-like research evaluation framework, especially one based explicitly on individual assessment.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Waikato, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 11/11.
Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: 21 Jun 2011
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citations; economics departments; journal weighting schemes; PBRF; research output;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- A19 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Other
- C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-07-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-IPR-2011-07-02 (Intellectual Property Rights)
- NEP-SOG-2011-07-02 (Sociology of Economics)
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