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Beyond the Impact Factor: measuring the international visibility of Romanian social sciences journals

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to assess the degree of international visibility for the Romanian scientific social sciences journals included in the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) database. By examining the national distribution of authors and the proportion of co-authorship within and outside Romania, the paper proposes the use of the Theil Index and its decomposition as a tool to assess international visibility. Although there are 10 ISI social sciences journals in Romania, the international visibility of these journals is relatively low; the number of foreign authors as a percentage of the total number of authors remains below 30 % for most journals. There is a high degree of geographic concentration for the foreign authors, as most come from two countries. Regression models also indicate that the number of authors from the same institution as the one that issues the journal affects significantly a journal’s Impact Factor. The number of articles authored exclusively by mixed teams (including authors from the same institution that issues the journal and authors from abroad or authors from other Romanian institutions) as a percentage of the total number of articles published is extremely low (8 %). This suggests that the Impact Factor, when used as a measure of research quality for the Romanian social sciences journals, may create bias in the judgement of those interpreting the results of the Impact Factor rankings, favoring insularity at the expense of scientific collaboration.

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Correspondence to Daniel Teodorescu.

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Andrei, T., Teodorescu, D. & Mirică, A. Beyond the Impact Factor: measuring the international visibility of Romanian social sciences journals. Scientometrics 108, 1–20 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11192-016-1949-7

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