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Comparing selection strategies for engineering research hotspots

Author

Listed:
  • Cai, Fang
  • Zheng, Wen-Jiang
  • Zhang, Xiao
  • Ji, Jiu-Ming
  • Zhou, Wei-Xing

Abstract

Identifying research fronts is of great scientific and practical significance. Partnered with Clarivate Analytics and the Higher Education Press, the Chinese Academy of Engineering launched an annual project, aiming to identify engineering research and development frontiers. For engineering research, we determine the candidate hotspots mainly based on data analysis of highly cited papers in the Web of Science Core Collection and select the fronts based on expert research and judgment. The research hotspots are selected from topics clustered through co-citation analysis, which are based on four topic indicators including the number of core papers, total citations, average publication year of core papers, and the percentage of consistently cited publications. It is thus crucial to design proper strategies for hotspot selection. We compared the performance of several hotspot selection strategies and found that the proposed mixed selection strategy performs best. The strategy was used in the 2018 project and led to an improved edition. We present an overall comparison of the performance of the top 10 countries or regions in engineering research fronts based respectively on the number of first author core papers and the citation number per paper of core papers. We believe that our experience obtained from the implementation of the Engineering Fronts project can be used as reference for other similar bibliometric projects.

Suggested Citation

  • Cai, Fang & Zheng, Wen-Jiang & Zhang, Xiao & Ji, Jiu-Ming & Zhou, Wei-Xing, 2019. "Comparing selection strategies for engineering research hotspots," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 534(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:534:y:2019:i:c:s037843711931324x
    DOI: 10.1016/j.physa.2019.122287
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    References listed on IDEAS

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