Development of citation measures and the socio-cultural factors affecting citation behavior in an emerging scientific community

Rashidi, Ali (2009) Development of citation measures and the socio-cultural factors affecting citation behavior in an emerging scientific community. Doctoral thesis, London Metropolitan University.


This thesis presents the development of theoretical and empirically applied citation_based bibliometric indicators of scientific research performance and applies them to Iranian medical research. In the absence of any pre-existing bibliometric data to provide objective indices to aid decision-making processes, a new body of information related to medical journals publications in Iran was manually collected. A database of all articles 10876) in the 90 Iranian medical journals published from 2002 to 2004 was developed and populated and used as a basis for comprehensive analysis of bibliometric indicators of Iranian medical publications.
One of the outcomes of the citation analysis was discovering that there is an unexpectedly low rate of citation to internally published articles. To seek possible reasons for this, a survey analysis of the cultural and social factors influencing citation behaviour of Iranian medical scholars was undertaken.
Further analysis revealed that the Garfield (ISI) impact factor was not an effective tool for making decisions regarding subject specific collections. Although previous authors have alluded to this drawback, the solutions were often too complex for them to be used by librarians. To address these shortcomings, two new practical measures (Indices) have been developed. The DSI supports individual subscription decisions with regard to the level of specialism of a journal within a particular discipline. DPI is a decision-making tool for libraries that indicates the proportion of all citations within a particular discipline that had been received by a particular journal.
Iranian medical researchers’ relationship with international journals was further considered by investigating the rate of publication of articles by these researchers in two different databases (Science Citation Index and PubMed) from 2002 to 2004.
In addition, to allow medical librarians in Iran to make more informed procurement choices with regard to internationally published journals, data were gathered to determine the extent to which Iranian medical researchers use them.
Finally, based on the experiences obtained from the empirical data collection, the findings from data analysis and the responses from the survey analysis, a number of policy recommendations and suggestions for taking these ideas further are proposed.

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