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Studies in the Dynamics of Science: Exploring emergence, classification, and interdisciplinarity
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Economics and Management (Dept.).
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The dynamic nature of science is embodied in the growth of knowledge in magnitude and the transformation of knowledge in structure. More specifically, the growth in magnitude is indicated by a sharp increase in the number of scientific publications in recent decades. The transformation of knowledge occurs as the boundaries of scientific disciplines become increasingly less distinct, resulting in a complicated situation wherein disciplines and interdisciplinary research topics coexist and co-evolve. Knowledge production in such a context creates challenges for the measurement of science.This thesisaims to develop more flexible bibliometric methodologies in order to address some of the challenges to measuring science effectively. To be specific, this thesis1) proposes a new approach for identifying emerging research topics; 2) measuresthe interdisciplinarity of research topics; 3) explores the accuracy of the journal classification systems of the Web of Science and Scopus; 4) examines the role of cognitive distance in grant decisions; and 5) investigates the effect of cognitive distance between collaborators on their research output. The data used in this thesisaremainly from the in-house Web of Science and Scopus databases of the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) at Leiden University. Quantitativeanalyses, in particular bibliometric analyses,are the main research methodologies employed in this thesis. Furthermore, this thesis primarily offers methodological contributions, proposing a series of approaches designed to tackle the challenges created by the dynamics of science. While the major contribution of this dissertation lies in the improvement of certain bibliometric approaches, it also enhances the understanding of the current system of science. In particular, the approaches and research findings presented here have implications for various stakeholders, including publishing organizations, bibliographic database producers, research policy makers, and research funding agencies. Indeed, these approaches could be built into a software tool and thereby be made available to researchers beyond the field of bibliometric studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm, Sweden: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2016. , viii, 48 p.
Series
TRITA-IEO, ISSN 1100-7982 ; 2016:04
Keyword [en]
science dynamics, bibliometrics, emerging research topics, interdisciplinary research, journal classification systems, cognitive distance, research policy
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184724ISBN: 978-91-7595-929-0 OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-184724DiVA: diva2:916731
Public defence
2016-04-29, Sal F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, KTH Campus, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20160406

Available from: 2016-04-06 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2017-02-22Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. A bibliometric model for identifying emerging research topics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A bibliometric model for identifying emerging research topics
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Detecting emerging research topics is essential, not only for research agencies but also for individual researchers. Previous studies have created various bibliographic indicators for the identification of emerging research topics. However, as indicated by Rotolo et al. (2015), the most serious problems are the lack of an acknowledged definition of emergence and incomplete elaboration of the linkages between the definitions that are used and the indicators that are created. With these issues in mind, this study first adjusts the definition of an emerging technology that Rotolo et al. (2015) have proposed in order to accommodate the analysis. Next, a set of criteria for the identification of emerging topics is proposed according to the adjusted definition and attributes of emergence. Using two sets of parameter values, several emerging research topics are identified. Finally, evaluation tests are conducted by the demonstration of the proposed approach and comparison with previous studies. The strength of the present methodology lies in the fact that it is fully transparent, straightforward, and flexible.

Keyword
emerging research topics, identification, bibliometric analysis, definition, attributions, operationalization
National Category
Other Computer and Information Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184729 (URN)
Note

QC 20160405

Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2016-04-06Bibliographically approved
2. Measure the interdisciplinarity of research topics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Measure the interdisciplinarity of research topics
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184730 (URN)
Note

QC 20160406

Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2016-04-06Bibliographically approved
3. Large-scale comparison between the journal classification systems of Web of Science and Scopus
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Large-scale comparison between the journal classification systems of Web of Science and Scopus
2015 (English)In: Journal of Informetrics, ISSN 1751-1577, E-ISSN 1875-5879, Vol. 10, 347-364 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
National Category
Other Computer and Information Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184719 (URN)
Note

QC 20160406

Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved
4. Defining the role of cognitive distance in the peer review process with an explorative study of a grant scheme in infection biology
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Defining the role of cognitive distance in the peer review process with an explorative study of a grant scheme in infection biology
2015 (English)In: Research Evaluation, ISSN 0958-2029, E-ISSN 1471-5449, Vol. 24, 271-281 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this paper is twofold: (1) to provide a methodology formeasurement ofcognitive distance between researchers and (2) to explorethe role of cognitive distance on the results of peer review processes. Citedreferencesand the contentof articlesare used to represent their respective scientific knowledge bases. Based on the two different approaches—Author-Bibliographic Coupling analysis andAuthor-Topic analysis—we apply the methodologyon a recent competition for grants from the Swedish Strategic Foundation.Results indicate thatcognitive distances between applicants and reviewersmight influence peer review results, but that the impact is to some extent at the unexpectedend. The main contribution of this paper is the elaborationon the relevance of the concept of cognitive distance to the issue of research evaluationingeneral, and especially in relation to peer review as a model used in grant decisions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford University Press, 2015
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184721 (URN)10.1093/reseval/rvv009 (DOI)000358019000004 ()
Note

QC 20160406

Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved
5. Heterogeneous expertise, knowledge spillover and productivity: Does cognitive distance in research collaboration matter
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Heterogeneous expertise, knowledge spillover and productivity: Does cognitive distance in research collaboration matter
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Economics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-184731 (URN)
Note

QC 20160406

Available from: 2016-04-04 Created: 2016-04-04 Last updated: 2016-04-06Bibliographically approved

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