UK Backs Away from a Bibliometric Research Assessment ExerciseJune 19th, 2009
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According to ScienceInsider (and Times Higher Education), the planned shift of the U.K. Research Assessment Exercise from peer review to bibliometric analysis may not happen. Bibliometric analysis may still be used, but only to guide the extensive peer review process that has determined how the U.K. government distributes research money to its universities. Part of the reason for the proposed shift had to deal with the significant costs involved.
Moving foward the Higher Education Funding Council will need to figure out how bibliometrics could be used in a meaningful way. Otherwise there will be additional pressure to try and bump up citation counts and numbers of publications with little regard to the quality of either. There are already ways to game the assessment in terms of who and what is selected by institutions to be assessed. If bibliometric analysis isn’t crafted carefully, the ways to skew results will increase.