Evaluating the scientific impact of research infrastructures: The role of current research information systems

Authors : Renaud Fabre, Daniel Egret, Joachim Schöpfel, Otmane Azeroual

Research infrastructures (RI) offer researchers a multitude of research opportunities and services and play a key role in the performance, innovative strength, and international competitiveness of science. As an important part of the generation and use of new knowledge and technologies, they are essential for research policies.

Because of their strategic importance and their need for significant funding, there is a growing demand for the assessment of their scientific output and impact. Current research information systems (CRIS) have contributed for many years now to the evaluation of universities and research organizations.

Based on studies on the application of CRIS to infrastructures and on a recent French report on the scientometric assessment of RI, this paper analyzes the potential of CRIS and their data models and standards (in particular the international CERIF format and the German RDC model) for the monitoring and evaluation of RI.

The interaction between functional specificities of RI and standards for their assessment is outlined, with reference to their own potential to stimulate and share innovation in the networks located inside and outside RI.

This societal challenge, more than an academic issue, is on the way to further harmonization and consolidation of shared and common RI metrics.

DOI : https://doi.org/10.1162/qss_a_00111