The Egyptian National University Rankings Committee has its main objective in understanding the methodologies of all the major international university rankings and the active discussion of strategies to improve performance of Egyptian universities in the aforesaid rankings. Almost all the rankings use some form of bibliometric analysis and the most important ones rely on such indicators for varying proportions of the weighted scores (20% for QS, almost 40% for Times Higher Education, 60% for Shanghai and 65% for US news & World Report). Therefore, we have held a number of sessions to introduce bibliometrics in Cairo including an Advanced Bibliometrics Course at CWTS, Leiden University in The Netherlands
Four main topics were covered on these two days:
Bibliometric data sources and data collection: The strengths and weaknesses of different bibliometric data sources will be discussed, focusing on Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar. Strategies for bibliometric data collection will be discussed as well. During the hands-on exercises, participants will use Web of Science to become familiar with important pitfalls in the use of bibliometric data (e.g., errors in citation matching and problems of author disambiguation).
Citation analysis: The rationale of citation analysis will be discussed, and the most important types of indicators will be introduced (i.e., basic and advanced field-normalised indicators; h-index; impact factor; SNIP). In addition, various practical issues in the use of citation analysis will be discussed, including the limited usefulness of citation analysis in engineering research, the social sciences, and the humanities, the problem of the lack of bibliometric data on books, and the problem of gaming or manipulation of citation-based indicators. During the hands-on exercises, participants will use the CWTS Monitor software to practice with the interpretation of advanced bibliometric indicators, e.g. benchmarking of Egypt versus other countries in the region.
University rankings: The focus was on the strengths and weaknesses of some of the major international rankings and, on how to use these in e.g. identifying potential collaborative partners.
Good practices for the use of scientometric indicators: The Leiden Manifesto was discussed and the responsible use of meaningful metrics in the evaluation process.
Prof. Dr. T. van Raan
Ton (A.F.J.) van Raan is emeritus professor of Quantitative Studies of Science. Founder and until 2010 Director of the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS), Leiden University, Netherlands. After his retirement as CWTS Director, he remained research professor. He studied mathematics, physics and astronomy at Utrecht University where he also earned a PhD in Physics. He held a Post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Bielefeld (Germany) and was a visiting scientist in the US,
UK, and France. His research work was in atomic and molecular physics, laser-physics and astrophysics. From 1977 he was a senior research fellow in physics at Leiden University and in 1985 he underwent a ‘field switch’ to science and technology studies in which he became Professor in 1991.
His research focus has included the application of bibliometric indicators in research evaluation, science as self-organizing complex system, statistics of bibliometric indicators, ranking and benchmarking of universities and the mapping of science. In 1995 he received, together with the American sociologist Robert K. Merton, the Derek de Solla Price Award, the highest international award in the field of quantitative studies of science. He published (as author and co-author) around thirty articles in physics and two hundred in science and technology studies. On the occasion of his retirement as CWTS director he was awarded by the Queen of the Netherlands with the royal distinction of Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion
Martijn Visser, MA
Martijn Visser is a researcher at the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) of Leiden University in the Netherlands. For many years Martijn has been primarily engaged in contract research conducting numerous research evaluation studies. He has published on a variety of topics primarily concerning bibliometric methods. He has more recently moved into the area regarding the limitations and opportunities of bibliometric data sources.