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Sub-field normaliztion in the multiplicative case : high- and low- impact citation indicators

  • Neus Herranz
  • Javier Ruiz-Castillo

This paper uses high- and low-impact citation indicators for the evaluation of the citation performance of research units at different aggregate levels. To solve the problem of the assignment of individual articles to multiple sub-fields, it follows a multiplicative strategy according to which each paper is wholly counted as many times as necessary in the several categories to which it is assigned at each aggregation level. To control for wide differences in citation practices at the lowest level of aggregation, we apply a novel sub-field normalization procedure in the multiplicative case. The methodology is applied to a partition of the world into three geographical areas: the U.S., the European Union (EU), and the Rest of the World. The main findings are the following two. (i) Although normalization does not systematically bias the results against any area, it reduces the U.S./EU highimpact gap in the all-sciences case by a non-negligible 14.4%. (ii) The dominance of the U.S. over the EU in the basic and applied research published in the periodical literature is almost universal at all aggregation levels. From the high-impact perspective, for example, the U.S. is ahead of the EU in 77 out of 80 disciplines, and all of 20 fields. For all sciences as a whole, the U.S. high-impact indicator is 61% greater than that of the EU. The authors acknowledge financial support from the Santander Universities Global Division of Banco Santander. Ruiz-Castillo also acknowledges financial help from the Spanish MEC through grant SEJ2007- 67436. This paper is part of the SCIFI-GLOW Collaborative Project supported by the European Commission.s Seventh Research Framework Programme, Contract number SSH7-CT-2008-217436 European Community's Seventh Framework Program.

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Paper provided by Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía in its series Economics Working Papers with number we1131.

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Date of creation: Oct 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cte:werepe:we1131
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  1. Pedro Albarrán & Juan A. Crespo & Ignacio Ortuño & Javier Ruiz-Castillo, 2011. "The skewness of science in 219 sub-fields and a number of aggregates," Economics Working Papers we1109, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  2. Pedro Albarran & Ignacio Ortuno & Javier Ruiz-Castillo, 2009. "The measurement of low- and high-impact in citation distributions: technical results," Economics Working Papers we095735, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
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