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National scientific facilities and their science impact on nonbiomedical research

Summary: National scientific facilities and their science impact
on nonbiomedical research
A. L. Kinney*
Goddard Space Flight Center, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 8800 Greenbelt Road, Greenbelt, MD 20771
Edited by Neta A. Bahcall, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, and approved September 17, 2007 (received for review May 11, 2007)
The ``h index'' proposed by Hirsch [Hirsch JE (2005) Proc Natl Acad
Sci USA 102:1656916573] is a good indicator of the impact of a
scientist's research and has the advantage of being objective.
When evaluating departments, institutions, or laboratories, the
importance of the h index can be further enhanced when it is
properly calibrated for the size of the group. Particularly acute is
the issue of federally funded facilities whose number of actively
publishing scientists frequently dwarfs that of academic depart-
ments. Recently, Molinari and Molinari [Molinari JF, Molinari A
(2008) Scientometrics, in press] developed a methodology that
shows that the h index has a universal growth rate for large
numbers of papers, allowing for meaningful comparisons between
institutions. An additional challenge when comparing large insti-
tutions is that fields have distinct internal cultures, with different
typical rates of publication and citation; biology is more highly


Source: Ahlers, Guenter - Department of Physics, University of California at Santa Barbara
Tesanovic, Zlatko - Department of Physics and Astronomy, Johns Hopkins University


Collections: Physics