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Article
Publication date: 2 April 2021

Linda Sīle, Raf Guns, Alesia A. Zuccala and Tim C.E. Engels

This study investigates an approach to book metrics for research evaluation that takes into account the complexity of scholarly monographs. This approach is based on work…

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigates an approach to book metrics for research evaluation that takes into account the complexity of scholarly monographs. This approach is based on work sets – unique scholarly works and their within-work related bibliographic entities – for scholarly monographs in national databases for research output.

Design/methodology/approach

This study examines bibliographic records on scholarly monographs acquired from four European databases (VABB in Flanders, Belgium; CROSBI in Croatia; CRISTIN in Norway; COBISS in Slovenia). Following a data enrichment process using metadata from OCLC WorldCat and Amazon Goodreads, the authors identify work sets and the corresponding ISBNs. Next, on the basis of the number of ISBNs per work set and the presence in WorldCat, they design a typology of scholarly monographs: Globally visible single-expression works, Globally visible multi-expression works, Miscellaneous and Globally invisible works.

Findings

The findings show that the concept “work set” and the proposed typology can aid the identification of influential scholarly monographs in the social sciences and humanities (i.e. the Globally visible multi-expression works).

Practical implications

In light of the findings, the authors outline requirements for the bibliographic control of scholarly monographs in national databases for research output that facilitate the use of the approach proposed here.

Originality/value

The authors use insights from library and information science (LIS) to construct complexity-sensitive book metrics. In doing so, the authors, on the one hand, propose a solution to a problem in research evaluation and, on the other hand, bring to attention the need for a dialogue between LIS and neighbouring communities that work with bibliographic data.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2013

Rachel Volentine and Carol Tenopir

The purpose of this paper is to ask: What is the value and outcome of scholarly reading for academic staff? How do academic library collections support research and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to ask: What is the value and outcome of scholarly reading for academic staff? How do academic library collections support research and teaching activities of academic staff? How do reading patterns of articles, books, and other materials differ? What is the role of the academic library collections in teaching and learning?

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides insight into the values and outcomes of scholarly reading, identifies overall reading patterns, and illuminates issues academics address. Approximately 2,000 academic staff members from six UK universities completed a web‐based survey. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected through the survey. The survey used the critical incident of last reading by academics to gather information on the purpose, outcomes, and values of scholarly readings and access to library collections. The survey concluded with open‐ended comments, which is the focus of this article.

Findings

The open‐ended comments focused on the importance of article readings to all work activities, in particular research. They also placed emphasis on the value of the library's e‐journal collections, but they had some issues with electronic access. The role of book reading was also discussed.

Research limitations/implications

Open‐ended comments are only one way of measuring the value of scholarly reading and library collections. Ongoing studies and examinations of the findings from the other sections of this study will add to the overall findings of the value of the academic library.

Originality/value

This paper further illustrates the essential role of scholarly reading and the library's collections on the academic enterprise. This type of qualitative “story” helps libraries demonstrate their value and assess areas of concern.

Content available
Article
Publication date: 31 October 2018

Tim C.E. Engels, Andreja Istenič Starčič, Emanuel Kulczycki, Janne Pölönen and Gunnar Sivertsen

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the evolution in terms of shares of scholarly book publications in the social sciences and humanities (SSH) in five European…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the evolution in terms of shares of scholarly book publications in the social sciences and humanities (SSH) in five European countries, i.e. Flanders (Belgium), Finland, Norway, Poland and Slovenia. In addition to aggregate results for the whole of the social sciences and the humanities, the authors focus on two well-established fields, namely, economics & business and history.

Design/methodology/approach

Comprehensive coverage databases of SSH scholarly output have been set up in Flanders (VABB-SHW), Finland (VIRTA), Norway (NSI), Poland (PBN) and Slovenia (COBISS). These systems allow to trace the shares of monographs and book chapters among the total volume of scholarly publications in each of these countries.

Findings

As expected, the shares of scholarly monographs and book chapters in the humanities and in the social sciences differ considerably between fields of science and between the five countries studied. In economics & business and in history, the results show similar field-based variations as well as country variations. Most year-to-year and overall variation is rather limited. The data presented illustrate that book publishing is not disappearing from an SSH.

Research limitations/implications

The results presented in this paper illustrate that the polish scholarly evaluation system has influenced scholarly publication patterns considerably, while in the other countries the variations are manifested only slightly. The authors conclude that generalizations like “performance-based research funding systems (PRFS) are bad for book publishing” are flawed. Research evaluation systems need to take book publishing fully into account because of the crucial epistemic and social roles it serves in an SSH.

Originality/value

The authors present data on monographs and book chapters from five comprehensive coverage databases in Europe and analyze the data in view of the debates regarding the perceived detrimental effects of research evaluation systems on scholarly book publishing. The authors show that there is little reason to suspect a dramatic decline of scholarly book publishing in an SSH.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 70 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

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Article
Publication date: 5 February 2018

K.N. Rao, Sunil Kumar and Manorama Tripathi

The purpose of this paper is to compare the prices of print and electronic versions of the same scholarly titles charged from a university library. This study also…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to compare the prices of print and electronic versions of the same scholarly titles charged from a university library. This study also examines whether preferences for print or electronic formats differ with disciplines and whether high preferences for the electronic version in particular disciplines lead to tagging of high prices for e-books in those disciplines. This study evaluates association in prices of e-books and their print versions for scholarly books. It also explains trends in gaps of prices of electronic and their print versions over the time to understand changing price policy of e-books with time.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a case study analysing and interpreting prices of 717 book titles available in electronic and print versions out of 1248 book titles recommended by the faculty members of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in early 2014. The minimum prices quoted by publishers or aggregators for these books became the secondary data for the study. The research methodology is based on quantitative descriptive and inferential statistical techniques.

Findings

The study statistically rejected the hypothesis that price tags of electronic and print versions of books do not differ significantly. E-books are usually more expensive than their print counterparts. They are more highly priced in disciplines, where the users prefer electronic books over the print ones. There is a moderate association in prices of electronic and their print versions; libraries can estimate about the budget which would be required for procuring books in electronic format with the help of price of print version; however, the accuracy of this stipulation would be only 20 per cent. The study has highlighted that 95.4 per cent of the scholarly e-books in English medium are published in the USA and the UK. The university presses of Cambridge, Oxford, Columbia, Princeton and MIT and commercial publishers like Routledge, Palgrave Macmillan, Ashgate and Springer are the major publishers and providers of the scholarly e-books.

Originality/value

This study provides insights into pricing policy of electronic and their print versions of scholarly book titles for libraries. Thus it may be relevant and helpful for library administrators in informed decision making while developing their collections for books.

Details

The Electronic Library, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

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Article
Publication date: 25 October 2018

Amalia Mas-Bleda and Mike Thelwall

The purpose of this paper is to assess the educational value of prestigious and productive Spanish scholarly publishers based on mentions of their books in online scholarly

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the educational value of prestigious and productive Spanish scholarly publishers based on mentions of their books in online scholarly syllabi.

Design/methodology/approach

Syllabus mentions of 15,117 books from 27 publishers were searched for, manually checked and compared with Microsoft Academic (MA) citations.

Findings

Most books published by Ariel, Síntesis, Tecnos and Cátedra have been mentioned in at least one online syllabus, indicating that their books have consistently high educational value. In contrast, few books published by the most productive publishers were mentioned in online syllabi. Prestigious publishers have both the highest educational impact based on syllabus mentions and the highest research impact based on MA citations.

Research limitations/implications

The results might be different for other publishers. The online syllabus mentions found may be a small fraction of the syllabus mentions of the sampled books.

Practical implications

Authors of Spanish-language social sciences and humanities books should consider general prestige when selecting a publisher if they want educational uptake for their work.

Originality/value

This is the first study assessing book publishers based on syllabus mentions.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 70 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

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Article
Publication date: 25 May 2012

Alexander Serenko, Nick Bontis and Madora Moshonsky

As a response to the claims that much of management academic research is irrelevant from the practitioner perspective, this study aims to empirically investigate whether

Abstract

Purpose

As a response to the claims that much of management academic research is irrelevant from the practitioner perspective, this study aims to empirically investigate whether books serve as effective knowledge distribution agents and whether peer‐reviewed publications are used in the development of book content.

Design/methodology/approach

A citation analysis of 40 authored and nine edited books was done, followed by a survey of 35 book authors.

Findings

This study refutes the previous claims that management academic research has made little impact on the state of practice. Peer‐reviewed sources, such as refereed journals, book chapters, and conference proceedings, are used to develop the content of knowledge management and intellectual capital (KM/IC) books. Even though most business professionals do not directly read academic articles, the knowledge existing in these articles is delivered to them by means of books and textbooks.

Practical implications

Scholarly research has played a significant role in developing the KM/IC field. This study confirms the existence of the indirect knowledge dissemination channels where books serve as knowledge transmission agents. Therefore, academics should not change their research behavior. Instead, infrastructure should be developed to facilitate the transition of scholarly knowledge to practitioners. The question is not whether academic research is relevant, instead it is whether it reaches practitioners in the most efficient way.

Originality/value

This is the most comprehensive empirical investigation of the role of books in academic knowledge transition ever conducted.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

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Article
Publication date: 11 March 2009

Kam C. Chan, Hung‐Gay Fung and Wai K. Leung

We examine the citations from four international business (IB) journals over 2000‐2004 to show the areas, the journals, and the institutions that impact IB research. The…

Abstract

We examine the citations from four international business (IB) journals over 2000‐2004 to show the areas, the journals, and the institutions that impact IB research. The leading works that influence IB research are primarily management journals, scholarly books, and IB journals. IB research is published in non‐IB journals, as well and this has influenced the recent research in IB journals. U.S. and non‐U.S. academic institutions and non‐academic organizations are among the top 100 institutions that impact IB research, indicating that this research is a truly global endeavor. Finally, recent IB research is influenced more by recent published research than by past research. Scholarly books have become less influential, while the economics, finance, and marketing journals show no change in the influence on IB research over time.

Details

Multinational Business Review, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1525-383X

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Article
Publication date: 12 April 2013

Carol Tenopir, Rachel Volentine and Donald W. King

The purpose of this paper is to examine how often university academic staff members use and create various forms of social media for their work and how that use influences…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how often university academic staff members use and create various forms of social media for their work and how that use influences their use of traditional scholarly information sources.

Design/methodology/approach

This article is based on a 2011 academic reading study conducted at six higher learning institutions in the United Kingdom. Approximately 2,000 respondents completed the web‐based survey. The study used the critical incident of last reading by academics to gather information on the purpose, outcomes, and values of scholarly readings and access to library collections. In addition, academics were asked about their use and creation of social media as part of their work activities. The authors looked at six categories of social media – blogs, videos/YouTube, RSS feeds, Twitter feeds, user comments in articles, podcasts, and other. This article focuses on the influence of social media on scholarly reading patterns.

Findings

Most UK academics use one or more forms of social media for work‐related purposes, but creation is less common. Frequency of use and creation is not as high as might be expected, with academics using or creating social media occasionally rather than regularly. There are some differences in use or creation based on demographic factors, including discipline and age. The use and creation of social media does not adversely affect the use of traditional scholarly material, and high frequency users or creators of social media read more scholarly material than others.

Originality/value

This paper illustrates that academics who are engaged with traditional materials for their scholarly work are also embracing various forms of social media to a higher degree than their colleagues. This suggests that social media tools could be a good addition to traditional forms of scholarly content as a way to promote academic growth. Social media is not replacing traditional scholarly material, but rather is enhancing their use.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 37 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

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Book part
Publication date: 2 December 1997

A.J. Meadows

Abstract

Details

Communicating Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-799-8

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Article
Publication date: 18 May 2015

Alesia A Zuccala, Frederik T. Verleysen, Roberto Cornacchia and Tim C.E. Engels

– The purpose of this paper is to assess the value of Goodreads reader ratings for measuring the wider impact of scholarly books published in the field of History.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the value of Goodreads reader ratings for measuring the wider impact of scholarly books published in the field of History.

Design/methodology/approach

Book titles were extracted from the reference lists of articles that appeared in 604 history journals indexed in Scopus (2007-2011). The titles were cleaned and matched with WorldCat.org (for publisher information) as well as Goodreads (for reader ratings) using an API. A set of 8,538 books was first filtered based on Dewey Decimal Classification class 900 “History and Geography”, then a subset of 997 books with the highest citations and reader ratings (i.e. top 25 per cent) was analysed separately based on additional characteristics.

Findings

A weak correlation (0.212) was found between citation counts and reader rating counts for the full data set (n=8,538). An additional correlation for the subset of 997 books indicated a similar weak correlation (0.190). Further correlations between citations, reader ratings, written reviews, and library holdings indicate that a reader rating on Goodreads was more likely to be given to a book held in an international library, including both public and academic libraries.

Originality/value

Research on altmetrics has focused almost exclusively on scientific journal articles appearing on social media services (e.g. Twitter, Facebook). In this paper we show the potential of Goodreads reader ratings to identify the impact of books beyond academia. As a unique altmetric data source, Goodreads can allow scholarly authors from the social sciences and humanities to measure the wider impact of their books.

Details

Aslib Journal of Information Management, vol. 67 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-3806

Keywords

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