“Benchmarking some Portuguese S&T system research units (2nd Edition)”

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Francisco M. Couto, Daniel Faria, Bruno Tavares, Pedro Gonçalves, Paulo Verissimo

University of Lisbon, DI-FCUL, Tech. Rep. TR-2013-03, Feb. 2013.

Abstract: The increasing use of productivity and impact metrics for evaluation and comparison, not only of individual researchers but also of institutions, universities and even countries, has prompted the development of bibliometrics. Currently, metrics are becoming widely accepted as an easy and balanced way to assist the peer review and evaluation of scientists and/or research units, provided they have adequate precision and recall. This paper presents a benchmarking study of a selected list of representative Portuguese research units, based on a fairly complete set of parameters: bibliometric parameters, number of competitive projects and number of PhDs produced. The study aimed at collecting productivity and impact data from the selected research units in comparable conditions i.e., using objective metrics based on public information, retrievable online and/or from official sources and thus verifiable and repeatable. The study has thus focused on the activity of the 2003-2006 period, where such data was available from the latest official evaluation. The main advantage of our study was the application of automatic tools, achieving relevant results at a reduced cost. Moreover, the results over the selected units suggest that this kind of analyses will be very useful to benchmark scientific productivity and impact, and assist peer review.

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