Thursday, March 10, 2011

The scientific tax return

Every year I, and other permanent research staff at the Faculty of Sciences, must fill out a "scientific tax return" (the Faculty's name for that, no mine), which is an online form with a bunch of questions.

I have included the questions related to publications below.   Without going into whether such a survey is a good idea at all, there are some messages that this survey sends (assuming one worries about this at all):

1. Don't publish in new journals (they have an impact factor of 0).
2. Don't publish in journals that are not indexed on the Web of Science (they don't contribute to your citations and have an impact factor of 0).
3. Blog posts don't count (I have written 7 blog posts that each were viewed more than 1000 times in the last 12 months)
4. Software doesn't count (for example the PROPKA webserver has been accessed 20,609 in the last 12 months)

Now that we have this thing called the internet, scientific communication and impact, has become so much more than conventional journal articles.

On a positive note, I do like that they ask many different questions, because that gives a better picture about productivity than a single number.

Questions Related to Publications
* Total number of peer reviewed publications published in 2010 (please do not include publications that were still "in press" by the end of 2010)

* Total number of peer reviewed publications published in 2010 included in Web of Science. See manual below.

* Total number of monographs published in 2010 (please do not include publications that were still "in press" by the end of 2010)

* Sum of Journal Impact Factors of all publications published in 2010, see for this table for present JIFs and WikiPedia for more information.

* Number of citations in 2006-2011 for publications from the period 2006-2010, including both years. See manual below.

* Total number of citations for your entire academic career. See manual below.

* Total number of publications from 2006-2010, including both years.

* Hirsch-Index. Hirsch-Index for your entire professional career (XXXX-2011). See WikiPedia and instructions below.

The form had a comments section.  Here is what I wrote.
Publication/Scientific Communication:
* I published the book Molecular Modeling Basics, which has sold 461 copies in 2010.
* I continued to run the blog molecularmodelingbasics.blogspot.com, which received 37,700 visits in the last 12 months.
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