A groundbreaking new Center tasked with examining and advancing the evaluation of research across all fields of knowledge production has been launched by Elsevier, the information analytics business specializing in science and health.

The International Center for the Study of Research (ICSR) will work closely with the research community to review and develop the use of qualitative and quantitative metrics of research evaluation to create a more transparent and robust approach to research assessment.

The mission of the ICSR will be to encourage the examination of research using arrays of metrics and qualitative and quantitative methods, rather than favoring one-size-fits-all approaches. Through its work the Center will seek to further the understanding of the sociological and technological factors that underpin the conduct of modern research, providing a forum for debating research evaluation alongside testing new hypotheses and fresh ideas.

The Center will draw on the interconnected disciplines of research evaluation, bibliometrics and scientometrics, science of science, science and technology studies, and the science of team science.

“The evaluation of research has always been heavily-debated,” said Dr. Éric Archambault, newly-appointed Head of the ICSR and General Manager of 1science, Elsevier. “The International Center for the Study of Research’s aim is to facilitate coherence across these discussions and provide a progressive momentum and a critical examination of evaluation approaches and metrics. The creation of the ICSR will advance the study of research information and evaluation, ensure the appropriate use of performance indicators; and promote evaluation best practices.”

The ICSR’s advisory board members are taken from all corners of the academic world and are experts in research metrics, indicators and research assessment practices.

Confirmed members include:

  • Professor Diana Hicks, School of Public Policy, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA
  • Dr. Sybille Hinze, German Centre for Higher Education Research and Science Studies, Berlin, Germany
  • Professor Amane Koizumi, National Institutes of Natural Sciences, Tokyo, Japan
  • Professor Jacqueline Leta, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Professor Johann Mouton, Centre for Research on Evaluation, Science & Technology, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa
  • Professor Chris Newfield, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, USA
  • Dr. Katarina Prpić, Institute for Social Research, Zagreb, Croatia
  • Dr. Gunnar Sivertsen, Nordic Institute for Studies in Innovation, Research and Education, Oslo, Norway
  • Professor Lin Zhang, School of Information Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China
  • Dr. Éric Archambault, General Manager, 1science, Elsevier, Canada
  • Dr. Holly J. Falk-Krzesinski, Vice President, Research Intelligence, Elsevier, USA
  • Dr. Andrew Plume, Senior Director of Research Evaluation, Elsevier, UK

The ICSR Advisory Board is charged with:

  • Providing expert input on developing, characterizing and validating new and existing research metrics, indicators and research assessment practices.
  • Advising on the selection of independent, external studies on topics within this scope to be supported.
  • Ad-hoc assessment and guidance on other matters of relevance to the ICSR.

“Elsevier is the owner of several data sources that are widely used in research assessment (for example, SciVal, Scopus and PlumX Metrics),” explained Andrew Plume, Chair of the ICSR Advisory Board, and Senior Director Research Evaluation at Elsevier.“However, independence and neutrality are central concerns of Elsevier in the establishment of the ICSR. At any time there will be 16 members sitting on the board, representing all continents, with no more than 4 Elsevier officials serving at one time.”

Read more about the launch of the International Center for the Study of Research on Elsevier Connect.

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