Scientometrics

, Volume 15, Issue 5–6, pp 563–591 | Cite as

Teletraffic conferences: Studying a field of engineering science

  • E. Kranakis
  • L. Leydesdorff
Article

Abstract

Titles of 925 conference papers contained in the first ten International Teletraffic Conferences (1955–1983) are analyzed in terms of word distributions. The aim is to determine how information about changing word frequencies and word patterns relates to the kind of information gained through the more traditional approach of intellectual history. Additionally, we consider what each approach can reveal about the information flows involved in the production and utilization of knowledge in teletraffic. In terms of methodology, the goal of this dual approach is to understand how the analysis of word and document structures can be used both as a scientometric tool and as a tool for historical research. We also comment more generally on the significance of conferences as an object for scientometric analysis, particularly with respect to the emergence and growth of the engineering and industrial sciences.

Keywords

Traditional Approach Word Frequency Information Flow Engineering Science Conference Paper 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes and refefrences

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    L. LEYDESDORFF, P. v.d. SCHAAR, The use of scientometric methods for evaluating national research programs,Science & Technology Studies, 5 (1987) 22–31.Google Scholar
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    “L'idée de nous réunir pouvait naître bien des raisons. Je soulignerais peut-être celle-ci que beaucoup de publications concernant la Téléphonie se trouvent dans des revues techniques dont la diffusion n'est pas aussi large que celle des périodiques scientifiques généraux;”, Opening SpeechR. Fortet, ITC 1, June 20, 1955 (reprinted inTeleteknik, 1957, p. 6).Google Scholar
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    L. LEYDESDORFF, Words and co-Words as indicators of intellectual organization,Research Policy, 18 (1989, fothcoming).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    The data were kindly provided to us by Dr.W. S. Hayward from Bell Laboratories who prepared an index of these conferences in 1984.Google Scholar
  5. 6.
    This matrix includes the so-called co-word matrix, since a co-word link between two documents means in our matrix two ones in two same columns. (A. RIP, j.-P. COURTIAL, Co-word maps of biotechnology. An example of cognitive scientometrics,Scientometrics, 6 (1984) 381–400; LEYDESDORFF, 1989.Op. cit., note 3. Words and co-Words as indicators of intellectual organization,Research Policy, 18 (1989, fothcoming)).Google Scholar
  6. 7.
    The conference distribution was saved as a subfile-structure. All factor structures have been analyzed both with orthogonal and oblique rotations- the latter to check for inter-factor correlations. When not indicated differently, default solutions are used, i.e., principal factoring with iteration, varimax rotation, and inclusion of factors with eigenvalue 1. For clustering Wards' mode of analysis was used with the cosine as similarity coefficient. See for further methodological details: L. LEYDESDORFF, R. ZAAL, Co-words and citations. Relations between document sets and environments, in: L. EGGHE, R. ROUSSEAU (Eds),Informetrics 87/88, Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1988, pp. 105–119.Google Scholar
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    Analytically, in explorative research factor analysis is the stronger instrument. In the result of a cluster analysis a case has to be a attributed to a cluster, while factor analysis allows a variable to load on more than one dimension. Moreover, the rotation of the eigenvectors allows for a better understanding of underlying structures than from (unrotated) principal component analysis. (L. LEYDESDORFF, Various methods for the mapping of science,Scientometrics, 11 (1987) 291–324).Google Scholar
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    It has been noted that, for the purpose of automatic indexing, mainly words with middle-range frequencies have positive ‘term discriminations values’ among documents. (The Terms Discrimination Value measures the degree to which the use of a terms will help to distinguish the documents from each other. See, for example: G. SALTON, C. S. YANG, On the specification of term values in automatic indexing,Journal of Documentation, 29 (1973) 351–372.Google Scholar
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    The symmetrical co-word matrix can be derived from this matrix as a specific selection. See note 6. (A. RIP, j.-P. COURTIAL, Co-word maps of biotechnology. An example of cognitive scientometrics,Scientometrics, 6 (1984) 381–400;Google Scholar
  13. 21.
    See also the discussion of ‘term discrimination value’ in note 13. G. SALTON, C. S. YANG, On the specification of term values in automatic indexing,Journal of Documentation, 29 (1973) 351–372.Google Scholar
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    The precise mathematical question is how much the random assignment of a (n+1)th variable disturbs the cluster structure of the cases, and further, how many such variables can be added without grossly distorting the structure.Google Scholar
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    See, for example: M. E. LESK, Word-word associations in document retrieval systems,American Documentation, 20 (1969) 27–38.Google Scholar
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    See about codification in science: H. ZUCKERMAN, R. K. MERTON, Age, aging, and age structure in science, in: R. K. MERTON,The Sociology of Science, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1973, pp. 497–559; S. COLE, The hierarchy of the sciences?.,American Journal of Sociology, 89 (1983) 111–139.Google Scholar
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    In a study of a set of journal article, we found, for example, ‘oxidative phosphorylation,’ ‘chemiosmosis,’, ‘squiggles,’ ‘high energy intermediates,’ ‘localized chemiosmosis,’ ‘mosaic thermodynamics’ as word which indicate essentially the same problem of energy transfer over biological membranes from different theroetical approaches. Cf. LEYDESDORFF, 1987.Op. cit., note 3. Words and co-Words as indicators of intellectual organization,Research Policy, 18 (1989, fothcoming).Google Scholar
  18. 26.
    Authors nowadays choose title-words for articles in scientific journals most carefully with respect to indexing and abstract services. (See: LEYDESDORFF, 1989.Op. cit., note 3). Words and co-Words as indicators of intellectual organization,Research Policy, 18 (1989, fothcoming)). However, in the field of computer science, for example, conferences have become as important a context for scientific exchange as journals and papers accepted for the important international computer science conferences (which occur annually and are published) have a status equal to that of journal publications. Accordingly, the titles of conference papers are as carefully chosen as those for journal articles.Google Scholar
  19. 27.
    Jens Arhnung and Villy Baek Iversen, Erik Brockmeyer and the Teletraffic Theory,ITC, 11 (1985).Google Scholar
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    J. W. COHEN, Some aspects of queueing theory,ITC, 7 (1973). See also J. W. COHEN, O. J. BOXMA, A survey of the evolution of queueing theory,Statistica Neerlandica, 39 (1985) 143–158.Google Scholar
  21. 30.
    W. S. LYON, Scientometrics with some emphasis on communication as scientific meeting and through the “Invisible College”,Journal of Chemical Information and Computer Sciences,26 (1986) 47–52. We would like to thank RonaldRousseau for calling our attention to this article.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 31.
    See about the limitations of the use of engineering journals to this purpose: L. LEYDESDORFF, P. V. d. Schaar, 1987.Op. cit., note 1..Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Kranakis
    • 1
  • L. Leydesdorff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Science Dynamics University of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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