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Arch Immunol Ther Exp (Warsz). 2009 Jan-Feb;57(1):33-8. doi: 10.1007/s00005-009-0004-2. Epub 2009 Feb 14.

The use of bibliometric indicators to help peer-review assessment.

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  • 1Département d'Evaluation Scientifique INSERM, Paris Cedex 13, France.


Inserm is the only French public research institution entirely dedicated to human health. Inserm supports research across the biomedical spectrum in all major disease areas, from fundamental lab-based science to clinical trials. To translate its scientists' findings into tangible health benefits, Inserm has its own affiliated company, Inserm Transfert, which works with industry. Since 2001, Inserm has been setting up on-line file management software for the evaluation of researchers and laboratories, called EVA ( ). EVA includes all grant applications, assessment reports, evaluation grading evaluation forms and includes automated bibliometric indicator software that enables calculating, for example, the number of publications, journal impact factors, number of citations, citation index, and number of the Top 1 publications for each researcher of the teams. The indicators take into account research fields, the year of publications, and the author's position among the participants. Bibliometrics is now considered a tool for science policy providing indicators to measure productivity and scientific quality, thereby supplying a basis for evaluating and orienting R&D. It is also a potential tool for evaluation. It is neutral, allows comparative (national and international) assessment, and may select papers in the forefront in all fields. For each team, bibliometric indicators are calculated for all researchers with permanent or long-term positions (3-5 years). The use of bibliometric indicators requires great vigilance, but according to our experience they enrich the committee's debates without any doubt. We present an analysis of the data of 600 research teams evaluated in 2007-2008.

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