economics publishing bibliometrics Political Science
Economic and Social Studies
Kenneth Benoit and Michael Marsh, A Relative Impact Ranking of Political Studies in Ireland, Economic and Social Review, 40, 3, 2009, 269, 298
Economic and Social Review 40 3
Against a background of the Irish government’s concerns with Key Performance
Indicators (KPIs) and the British government’s wishes for a more quantitative Research
Assessment Exercise (RAE), our study conducts a relative impact assessment of the study of
politics, government, political science, and international relations in Ireland. Impact is measured
as citations from the publications of permanent staff in eight Irish politics departments, based on
data compiled in April 2008 from two leading academic indexes – ISI’s Web of Science and Scopus
– as well as the now popular Google Scholar. We discuss some of the criticisms that naturally arise
in a study of this nature. Then, following similar exercises in other disciplines (e.g. economics), we
use the impact measures to compare and rank individual scholars as well as departments. We also
explore the extent to which the choice of different indexes, and different measures, influences the
results that we obtain. While there are differences, in particular between indexes based purely on
articles and those that access books and other material, the results from the different indexes are
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