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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Wissenschaftsforschung

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Institut für Sozialwissen­schaften | Wissenschaftsforschung | Termindateien | Talk by Ismael Ráfols (Ingenio, Valencia) "How S&T indicators can disadvantage forms of knowledge in the margins of research systems"

Talk by Ismael Ráfols (Ingenio, Valencia) "How S&T indicators can disadvantage forms of knowledge in the margins of research systems"

Wann 14.03.2019 von 10:15 bis 12:00 (Europe/Berlin / UTC100) iCal
Wo Institut für Sozialwissenschaften, Raum 004, Universitätsstr. 3b, Berlin
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We are glad to announce that the well-known science and technology policy analyst, Ismael Ràfols (Ingenio, Valencia), will be giving a guest lecture at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. In his talk he will address some of the problems that are connected to the use of indicators in different geographical regions and research topics that are not in the core activity areas of science. He will examine the problems that arise from a universal use of indicators in research evaluation (e.g. unstable parameters, incorrect models, irrelevant properties) from a bibliometric perspective, and show data on the under-representation of publications from non-core countries and topics in the main bibliometrics databases. Finally, he will discuss how the use of conventional S&T indicators may disadvantage particular forms of knowledge – in particular topics and types of knowledge that differ from mainstream science in industrialized countries.

The lecture is a joint event by the WZB Berlin Social Science Centre and the Robert K. Merton Centre (RMZ).

Abstract

S&T indicators rankings have become an increasingly prominent part of research governance across most countries and scholarly disciplines. In this presentation I will explore the biases and effects that S&T indicators may have in geographical regions and research topics that are not in the core activity areas of science. Focusing on bibliometrics, first, I will propose the reasons why indicators cannot be universally used in research evaluation, namely: unstable parameters, incorrect models and irrelevant properties. Second, I will show data on the under-representation of publications from non-core countries and topics in the main bibliometrics databases. Third, I will illustrate the functions of publications in journals not indexed in mainstream databases. Finally, I will discuss how the use of conventional S&T indicators may disadvantage particular forms of knowledge – in particular topics and types of knowledge that differ from mainstream science in industrialised countries.

References:

About the speaker:

Ismael Rafols is a research fellow at Ingenio (CSIC-UPV, València), visiting professor at the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) of Leiden University and associate faculty at SPRU (Univ. Sussex, Brighton). His research considers the role of S&T indicators in science policy, addressing some of the challenges posed in The Leiden Manifesto. In particular, he investigates how to make a more plural and inclusive use of S&T indicators for informing evaluation, funding and research strategies. Ismael Rafols has a background in physics, biophysics and nanobiotechnology and holds a MSc in Science and Technology Policy from SPRU (Sussex).