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Quantitative indicators for evaluation of basic research programs/projects

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1 Author(s)
Frame, J.D. ; School of Government & Business Administration, George Washington Univ., Washington, DC, USA

Examination of quantitative indicators of the publishing activity of researchers enables managers to assess basic research projects and programs in their organizations along the dimensions of quantity, quality, interdisciplinarity, internationally, degree of collaboration, etc. Combined with other indicators (e.g. professional and chronological ages of researchers, highest degree, degree conferring institution), they give management a good quantitative snapshot of some of the measurable aspects of their projects and programs. These literature indicators must be used very carefully in evaluation. For example, since they are statistical indicators, they are more valid when applied to groups of researchers than to an individual researcher. This paper illustrates the use of quantitative indicators in the evaluation of actual projects/programs of federal agencies that support basic research. It also contains `field norm' tables that describe a number of statistical characteristics of randomly selected academic researchers working in six different R&D areas. These tables enable the R&D manager to compare his staff and its publication performance with a baseline measure of academic research performance.

Published in:

Engineering Management, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:EM-30 ,  Issue: 3 )