Authors : Ehsan Mohammadi, Mike Thelwall
Reading academic publications is a key scholarly activity. Scholars accessing and recording academic publications online are producing new types of readership data. These include publisher, repository, and academic social network download statistics as well as online reference manager records.
This chapter discusses the use of download and reference manager data for research evaluation and library collection development. The focus is on the validity and application of readership data as an impact indicator for academic publications across different disciplines.
Mendeley is particularly promising in this regard, although all data sources are not subjected to rigorous quality control and can be manipulated.
URL : https://arxiv.org/abs/1901.08593
Authors : Nabeil Maflahi, Mike Thelwall
Within science, citation counts are widely used to estimate research impact but publication delays mean that they are not useful for recent research. This gap can be filled by Mendeley reader counts, which are valuable early impact indicators for academic articles because they appear before citations and correlate strongly with them.
Nevertheless, it is not known how Mendeley readership counts accumulate within the year of publication, and so it is unclear how soon they can be used. In response, this paper reports a longitudinal weekly study of the Mendeley readers of articles in six library and information science journals from 2016.
The results suggest that Mendeley readers accrue from when articles are first available online and continue to steadily build. For journals with large publication delays, articles can already have substantial numbers of readers by their publication date.
Thus, Mendeley reader counts may even be useful as early impact indicators for articles before they have been officially published in a journal issue. If field normalised indicators are needed, then these can be generated when journal issues are published using the online first date.
URL : http://hdl.handle.net/2436/620522
Authors : Enrique Orduna-Malea, Alberto Martin-Martin, Mike Thelwall, Emilio Delgado Lopez-Cozar
The academic social network site ResearchGate (RG) has its own indicator, RG Score, for its members. The high profile nature of the site means that the RG score may be used for recruitment, promotion and other tasks for which researchers are evaluated.
In response, this study investigates whether it is reasonable to employ the RG Score as evidence of scholarly reputation.
For this, three different author samples were investigated. An outlier sample includes 104 authors with high values. A Nobel sample comprises 73 Nobel winners from Medicine & Physiology, Chemistry, Physics and Economics (from 1975 to 2015).
A longitudinal sample includes weekly data on 4 authors with different RG Scores. The results suggest that high RG Scores are built primarily from activity related to asking and answering questions in the site.
In particular, it seems impossible to get a high RG Score solely through publications.
Within RG it is possible to distinguish between (passive) academics that interact little in the site and active platform users, who can get high RG Scores through engaging with others inside the site (questions, answers, social networks with influential researchers).
Thus, RG Scores should not be mistaken for academic reputation indicators.
URL : https://arxiv.org/abs/1705.03339
Authors : Kayvan Koush, Mike Thelwall
Individual academics and research evaluators often need to assess the value of published research. Whilst citation counts are a recognised indicator of scholarly impact, alternative data is needed to provide evidence of other types of impact, including within education and wider society.
Wikipedia is a logical choice for both of these because the role of a general encyclopaedia is to be an understandable repository of facts about a diverse array of topics and hence it may cite research to support its claims.
To test whether Wikipedia could provide new evidence about the impact of scholarly research, this article counted citations to 302,328 articles and 18,735 monographs in English indexed by Scopus in the period 2005 to 2012.
The results show that citations from Wikipedia to articles are too rare for most research evaluation purposes, with only 5% of articles being cited in all fields. In contrast, a third of monographs have at least one citation from Wikipedia, with the most in the arts and humanities.
Hence, Wikipedia citations can provide extra impact evidence for academic monographs. Nevertheless, the results may be relatively easily manipulated and so Wikipedia is not recommended for evaluations affecting stakeholder interests.
URL : http://www.scit.wlv.ac.uk/~cm1993/papers/WikipediaCitations.pdf
Authors : Vincent Larivière, Cassidy R. Sugimoto, Benoit Macaluso, Staša Milojević, Blaise Cronin, Mike Thelwal
Since its creation in 1991, arXiv has become central to the diffusion of research in a number of fields. Combining data from the entirety of arXiv and the Web of Science (WoS), this paper investigates (a) the proportion of papers across all disciplines that are on arXiv and the proportion of arXiv papers that are in the WoS, (b) elapsed time between arXiv submission and journal publication, and (c) the aging characteristics and scientific impact of arXiv e-prints and their published version.
It shows that the proportion of WoS papers found on arXiv varies across the specialties of physics and mathematics, and that only a few specialties make extensive use of the repository.
Elapsed time between arXiv submission and journal publication has shortened but remains longer in mathematics than in physics. In physics, mathematics, as well as in astronomy and astrophysics, arXiv versions are cited more promptly and decay faster than WoS papers.
The arXiv versions of papers – both published and unpublished – have lower citation rates than published papers, although there is almost no difference in the impact of the arXiv versions of both published and unpublished papers.”
URL : http://arxiv.org/abs/1306.3261