In 2007, two new experimental projects have been launched in the field of S&T Indicators inside PRIME. They have the main objective of addressing major methdological challenges in the field of indicators by testing new approaches and the use of new data sources. Results will be available until the end of 2008.
1) The UNIPUB project aims to realize an experiment on the exploitation of university-level databases of publications to characterize the whole publication output of a university. Firstly, it aims to develop categories to characterize this output alongside a number of simple dimensions, including the broad scientific domain, the type of publications and the language of publications and to produce operational definitions which could be used for coding publications. Several sources inspire the reflection: classical databases schemes and codes, internal practices of universities possessing their own databases. Secondly, we will test this approach on a small number of selected universities in the involved countries, and test different methodologies of coding, including reliance on existing in-house classification, classical databases schemes, ad-hoc automatic indexing and manual coding for the ambiguous cases. Thirdly, these data will be used to provide a comparison of the publication output of these universities alongside a number of dimensions, like the academic vs. third-mission orientation, the international vs. national vs. regional orientation and we will look to the variations of these orientations according to the scientific domains considered. These results will thus usefully complement existing analysis based on international bibliographic databases, mostly devoted to papers published in scientific journals. These databases, focus to a large extent on international academic activity and visibility only. Our work could be especially useful for characterizing the publication output in social sciences and humanities, particularly in non-English speaking countries.
However, the main project result will be the development of a methodology and tools to produce this kind of analyses, which could then be exploited on a larger scale. A side product will be also recommendations and codes of good practice on how to structure and exploit university publication databases and which classification structures to provide.
The project is carried out by four research teams with a wide experience in indicators developments and especially on the analysis of publications output of institutions,. It is coordinated by CNR CERIS in Rome, with the participation of CINDOC-CSIC in Madrid, Spain, the University of Lugano in Switzerland and the Rathenau Instituut in the Netherlands. All of them are involved in national evaluation exercises and already have well-developed contacts with the involved universities, ensuring thus their collaboration, which is critical for the success of the project.
2) The EURO-CV project has a two main overall objectives: First, to systematically take stock of and analyse worldwide efforts intended to both build CV databases and exploit researchers’ CVs as a source of information for research evaluation and policy-making. Second, to build on this up-to-date knowledge in order to look into the feasibility of CV-based indicator development in Europe to study researchers’ mobility patterns and the mobility effects.
Efforts are being made in several European countries, but no coordinated international action has yet been undertaken. Building on recent international experiences to standardize and use CVs for research evaluation purposes, we have reason to believe that using them as a data source has great potential for improving research policies in the European Research Area through the development of new indicators and analyses that would complement those obtained from other sources.
Download the EURO-CV final report.