Early-stage detection of breakthrough-class scientific research : using micro-level citation dynamics

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Early-stage detection of breakthrough-class scientific research : using micro-level citation dynamics

Type: Doctoral Thesis
Title: Early-stage detection of breakthrough-class scientific research : using micro-level citation dynamics
Author: Winnink, J.J.
Issue Date: 2017-02-22
Keywords: Scientific breakthroughs
Early-stage
Computerized Algorithms
Discoveries
Citation analysis
Abstract: The research presented in this PhD thesis describes ways of identifying at an early-stage, 2-3 years after their publication, discoveries in science that are expected to have a major impact on science. Bibliographic information extracted from those scientific publications is analysed to select patterns that may identify such `scientific breakthroughs’. A distinction is made between different types of breakthroughs. A major methodological issue is the differentiation between discoveries that actually achieve a long-term major impact on science and those where the impact has not occurred within the first three years. These impacts are measured in terms of `citations’ from subsequent research publications. This thesis introduces the conceptual framework that is used to analyses four case studies, each study focussing on a specific well-documented breakthrough discovery. The citation impact patterns are analysed in a search for bibliographic markers that are characteristic for a breakthrough discovery. The significance of the various markers, one set of markers for each type of breakthrough, were tested in a large-scale validation study. This study resulted in several early-stage identification algorithms. Five of these algorithms were implemented as automated computerized search methods. The algorithms have proved able, retrospectively, to identify early-stage publications that present (potential) breakthrough discoveries.
Promotor: Supervisor: A.F.J. van Raan, R.J.W. Tijssen
Faculty: Social and Behavioural Sciences
University: Leiden
Uri: urn:isbn:9789463011167
Handle: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/46101
 

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