Library Philosophy and Practice 2012
Annals of Library and Information Studies, 2002–2010: A Bibliometric Study
Dr. Kamal Lochan Jena
Dr. Dillip K Swain
Dr. K. C. Sahoo
Research publications are the embodiments of the intellectual thought contents expressed in published literature whose key objective is to transmit innovative ideas or information to any specific field of knowledge towards the further development of a subject or a discipline. In this respect bibliometric study is regarded as one of the crucial areas of research in the field of Library and Information Science. Moreover, bibliometrics study is used as an instrument in the collection building policy by providing the precise and much needed information to the managers to take the right decision in right time as to what documents they should select and what documents they should discard from the existing collections of their respective libraries. Contextually, the present study attempts to measure the publication traits of a premier Indian referred journal namely, Annals of Library and Information Studies (ALIS) from 2002 to 2010.
ALIS is a leading library science journal being published by The National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR), New Delhi on quarterly basis. This journal publishes articles, documentation notes and research reviews on library, documentation and information science, information systems, services and products, information technology, information users, bibliometrics, scientometrics and informetrics, education and training and other related topics (www.niscair.res.in). Therefore a bibliometric study of this journal is of immense significance.
Review of Literature
Though the statistics was applied to study the literature in any subject but the first recorded study of Bibliometric topic was in 1917 by Coles and Eales (1917) with the title 'Statistical analysis of literature of history of comparative anatomy' which served as a model for applying the counting technique in the evaluation of international activities. Pritchard (1969) first introduced the term 'Bibliometrics' in 1969 to mean 'the application of mathematics and statistical methods to books and other media of communications'. Roy (1983) has defined bibliometrics as a 'study of the process of information use by analyzing the characteristics of documents and their distribution by statistical methods. Mote and Deshmukh (1996) in their study on Annals of Library Science and Documentation found that journals are most cited form of communication amongst the library and information scientists and the source journal is the most cited publication. Shokeen and Kaushik (2004) in their study on Indian Journal of Plant Physiology found that journal articles are predominant with 81% of total citations. The ratio of author self citation to total citations is 1:16.65. The ratio of Journal Self Citation to total citation is 1:31.91. The results also highlight that 398 citations are below 10 years old, whereas 358 citations are below 20 years but more than 10 years old.
In the aforesaid direction, Jena (2007) in his study on Indian Journal of Fibre and Textile Research, 1996–2004' revealed various details of the trend of publications of this journal. Biswas, Roy and Sen (2007) conducted a bibliometric study on Economic Botany from 1994-2003 and revealed that among the citations, books accounted for 59%, journals 41% while, e-citations were quite negligible. Furthermore, they found that the highest numbers of contributions were emanated from academic institutions such as universities. Zao, et al.(2007) in their study on Educational Psychology identified six clusters of journals, including general educational psychology/learning/literacy, school psychology, measurement and counseling, Germany-based educational psychology, creativity, and the other related themes. Furthermore, the study revealed that a small number of journals accounted for a relatively high percentage of the intra-disciplinary citations; the majority of the selected journals cited more than being cited in the field. Turk (2008) indicated that there is quite a uniform way about methodology of citation counts and substantial research about motivation for URL citations to LIS articles. Willet (2008) found that many of the most cited papers in the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling describe software packages that play a key role in modern chemoinformatics research. Zainab, Ani and Anur (2009) in their bibliometric study on Malayasian Journal of Computer Science evaluated the article productivity of the journal from 1985 to 2007 using Lotka's Law. The study further revealed authorship, co-authorship pattern by degree of authors' collaboration that ranged from 0.25 to 0.95. Asha and Anil (2010) under took a bibliometric study of 4798 citations appended to 400 articles in five volumes (2003-2007) of the Indian Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics and found that the most cited documents are articles from research journals and the foreign authors have contributed more than Indian authors. Swain (2011) in his scientometric analysis of Library Philosophy and Practice from 2004 to 2009 found that the degree of collaboration in LPP ranged from 0.222 to 0.52 and the highest numbers of contributors hailed from Nigeria, followed by USA, India, and Iran. Swain and Panda (2012) conducted a bibliometric study on Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, 2002 to 2010 and found that due to absolute domination of solo contributions, the visibility of collaborative contribution was found remarkably less. The study further revealed that about one third of the total publications received citations, more than half of the cited articles carried just one citation, one fourth got 2 citations, and the rest received citations between 3 to 9 times. Jena, Swain and Sahu (2012) in their bibliometric study of The Electronic Library from 2003 to 2009 revealed some interesting bibliometric traits of this journal. Taking the above mentioned literature into context, the present study aims to provide some value addition to the corpus of literature on bibliometric studies.
Objectives of the Study
The present study intends to analyze the publication trends in ALIS during the period 2002 to 2010. The key objectives of the study are:
For the analysis of the study, nine volumes (Vol 49 to 57) containing 36 issues of "Annals of Library and Information Studies" published during the year 2002 to 2010 have been taken up for evaluation. The details with regard to each published article such as number of articles in each issue of the journal, number of authors, name of authors, place of authors, number of references and their forms, number of pages, etc., were recorded and analyzed for making observations. The data were collected; organised and analysed using MS-Excel spreadsheets. The tables and graphs were generated in accordance with the objectives of the study. For the sake of convenience, only three major forms of citations comprising of journals, books and web resources were taken into the purview of the study while proceedings (conference/seminars/workshops), reports, theses, notes, lectures, speeches, press releases, white papers, employment gazettes, interviews, commentary, news items and such other materials which were found relatively less by their individual numbers were clubbed up into others category. Furthermore, web resources were differentiated from electronic journals. The gathered data after due scrutiny, were tabulated and processed for analysis and subsequent interpretation. The degree of collaboration (DC) of the contributors was derived using the Subramanyam(1983) formula which states that the degree of collaboration is the ratio between the number of multiple authored papers and the number of multiple authored papers plus number of single authored papers. This formula can be represented as follows:
NM + NS
Where, DC = Degree of collaboration
NM = Number of multiple authored papers
NS = Number of single authored papers
Analysis and Discussion
Year Wise Distribution of Articles
Table 1: Year Wise Distribution of Articles
Table 1 reveals that there is a steady rise in the number of publications of articles ranging from 2002 to 2010. Out of the total 247 articles the maximum numbers of articles are reported to have been published in the year 2010 (43 articles; 17.4%) while the least number of articles have been published in the year 2002 (18 articles; 7.29%). On an average, ALIS has accommodated 7 articles per issue.
Year Wise Distribution of Articles and Corresponding Citations
Table 2: Year wise Distribution of Articles and Citations
Figure 1: Year Wise Distribution of Articles and Corresponding Citations
Table 2 shows the year wise distribution of articles, the corresponding total number of citations and the average number of citations per article. It is found that there is a total of 4056citations distributed over 36 journal issues carrying a total of 247 articles. Moreover, it is found that the rate of citations of articles has witnessed an increasing trend. The lowest number of average citations per article is found in the year 2002 (nearly 10 citations per article) and the highest number of average citations per article is reported in the year 2010 (24 citations per article).
Bibliographic Forms of Documents
Table 3: Bibliographical Forms of Documents
Figure 2: Bibliographic Forms of Documents
Table 3 depicts the distribution of bibliographical forms of citations. It is observed that unlike other related studies, the journal form is the most predominant form followed by books and web resources. Out of the total citations, journals carry the highest number of citations (2329 citations; 57.4%) followed by books (671 citations; 16.5%), and web resources (470 citations; 11.6%). The rest forms which are grouped into 'others' were found less.
Table 4: Authorship Pattern
Table 4 indicates that majority of authors preferred to publish their research results in two authorship mode (47.4%) followed by individual authorship mode (32.4%) and three authorship mode (17.409%) while, articles published by more than three authors (7 articles; 2.9%) were quite negligible. The Degree of Collaboration of authors can be calculated as
DC = 167 / (167 + 80) = 0.676
As DC value exceeds 0.5 and tends to 1, it is deduced that multi-authored citations occupy the prominent position and the research is based on team research rather than solo ones.
Ranking of Authors
Table 5: Ranking of Authors
Table 5 depicts the ranking of authors. There are a total of 318 authors who contributed 247 numbers of articles to Annals of Library and Information Studies from 2002 to 2010. From Table 5 it is found that B K Sen, who happens to be a bibliometric exponent in India, is the leading author contributing twenty articles followed by B M Gupta and K C Garg with eight articles each securing the second position. Bidyarthi Dutta contributed six articles and ranked third. V K J Jeevan, Suresh Kumar, G K Manjunath and Vijai Kumar contributed five articles each securing fourth rank. Dinesh K Gupta, Haneefa K Mohamed, B S Biradar, B T Sampath Kumar, D Shivalingaiah, Anup Kumar Das, S Kumar and V L Kalyane who contributed four articles each are bracketed in the fifth rank. Besides the above mentioned authors, 18 authors contributed three articles each, 45 authors contributed two articles each and 239 authors contributed one article each.
Length of Articles
Table 6: Length of Articles
Table 6 shows that the minimum average length of article is 7 pages which is reported for the cumulative issues of 2004 while, the maximum average page of the article is 9 pages for the year 2002. Taking all the issues from 2002 to 2010 into account, it is found that ALIS has accommodated on an average 8 pages per article.
Geographical Distribution of Contributors
Table 7: Geographical Distribution of Contributors (Equal Credit Method)
From Table 7 it is evident that there are a total of 476 authors representing 12 different countries. The geographical distribution of articles is decided basing upon the address of authors' affiliation given in the article. Here, equal credit method (Chua, et al, 2002; Lowry et al; Serenko, et al, 2010) is employed for ranking of country productivity by scores. This method assigns one point to each article which is equally shared among authors. For example, if an article has been contributed by n authors, then each author will earn 1/n points for his country. For instance, three authors from USA, two authors from India, and one author from UK have contributed one article. In that case, each author will earn (1/6) a score of 0.167 for his country and by that way USA will score 0.50, India-0.334, and UK- 0.167. In this study, the share of contribution of India (232.5 points; 454 contributions) is found to be at the top. Among other countries, Nigeria (2.5 points) with the contribution of four articles ranked second. The Netherlands and USA have 2.0 points with two contributions each ranked third in the list. Rest countries have scored less than 2.0 points and the contribution of articles with varied contributions from one to three articles.
Table 7(a): Geographical Distribution of Contributors (Indian States)
From Table 7, it is found that India has scored 232.5 points contributing 454 numbers of articles and has 95.378 % of total number of contribution. So it was decided to make a study of geographical distribution of contributors among different states of India which is presented in Table 7(a). The analysis shows that New Delhi scored 57.239 points with 101 numbers of contributions and ranked first. Among the other states Karnataka scored 39.229 points with 81 contributions, West Bengal scored 20.246 points with 40 contributions ranked second and third respectively. Between the score 10 to 20 points Maharashtra scores 18.908 points with 51 contributions, Kerala scores17.5 points with 24 contributions, Uttar Pradesh scores14.972 points with 32 contributions, Tamilnadu scores 13.077 points with 33 numbers of contributions and ranked fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh respectively. Other states have less than 10 points with the contribution of less than 20 articles each.
Chronological Distribution of Citations
Table 8: Chronological Distribution of Citations
Figure 3: Half Life Period
The analysis of the age of citations helps to determine the useful life of information resources used in any field of knowledge. It is also used by academic librarians to maintain or discard monographs or serials in the library which would be no longer needed by researchers (Sharma, 2009). Table 8 represents the age distribution of all documents. It is found that authors' citation of documents ranged from very recent year of publication to as old as documents of 200 years old, and the half life of the cited documents is about 11 years.
The findings of the study are summarized as:
The contribution of articles to each volume of Annals of Library & Information Studies is constantly increasing from year to year
The average citations per article is 16;
The average number of pages per article is 8;
It is found that the journal citations are predominant (57.4%of the total citations) followed by books (16.5%) and web resources (11.6 %);
Two authored papers are found to be the highest followed by single-authored and then three- authored papers. The degree of collaboration in Annals of Library & Information Studies is found to be 0.676;
In regards to country productivity, India topped the list. In regards to states, New Delhi stood first; and
The half life period of document citations is 11 years.
Annals of Library and Information Studies earlier published as Annals of Library and Documentation that brought out its maiden issue in the year 1952, is identified as one of the best referred journals in the field of Library and information Science in India with a publishing history of 58 years. Due to its standard editorial policy, ALIS has felt its presence in the academic arena by bringing out quality publications that have been highly appreciated by teachers, students, research scholars and authors as well. Moreover, authors feel proud of having a rich publishing experience with ALIS. The study has depicted a nice portrait of ALIS which speaks volumes about the publication policy of this journal. Nevertheless, it has gradually promoted its value through its global readership as it is indexed in DOAJ as an open access journal. It is expected that ALIS will further grow its stature in the days ahead.
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