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      Social sciences research in the Central European city of Wrocław: A density-equalizing mapping analysis

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          The city of Wrocław in Poland represents one of Central Europeans oldest capitals of science with numerous Nobel laureates. Due to a long history of political suppressions with Nazi Germany and Communism from 1933 until 1989, its scientific community was suppressed for more than half a century.


          The present study assessed scientific activities in the field of social and neighbouring sciences using density equalizing mapping. On the basis of the NewQIS (New Quality and Quantity Indices in Science) platform and the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI) of the Web of Science database, a total of 1787 articles originating from Wrocław were identified between 1966 and 2017.


          In total, 549 research collaborations of Wrocław with 96 different countries were present (30.7%). Among the 107 research areas the highest activity was found for the field of Business and Economics with n = 272 articles (average citation rate (AVR) of 12.54), followed by Psychology (n = 252 articles, AVR = 9.06), Psychiatry (n = 205 articles, AVR = 4.74) and Public, Environmental and Occupational Health (n = 145 articles, AVR = 7.96). The highest AVR was found for Operations Research (25.36 with n = 87 articles). Density equalizing mapping procedures revealed a global pattern of social sciences research collaborations with scientists from Germany, the UK and the US as the primary cooperating partner of Wrocław. The different countries had major differences in the area of research collaborations.


          This is the first study that depicts the global network of Wrocław scientific activities in the field of social sciences. The exorbitant increase in research activity from 2006 onwards can lead to the assumption that Wrocław social sciences encounter a fruitful future.

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          Most cited references 41

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          An index to quantify an individual's scientific research output.

           J. E. Hirsch (2005)
          I propose the index h, defined as the number of papers with citation number > or =h, as a useful index to characterize the scientific output of a researcher.
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            The rate of growth in scientific publication and the decline in coverage provided by Science Citation Index

            The growth rate of scientific publication has been studied from 1907 to 2007 using available data from a number of literature databases, including Science Citation Index (SCI) and Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI). Traditional scientific publishing, that is publication in peer-reviewed journals, is still increasing although there are big differences between fields. There are no indications that the growth rate has decreased in the last 50 years. At the same time publication using new channels, for example conference proceedings, open archives and home pages, is growing fast. The growth rate for SCI up to 2007 is smaller than for comparable databases. This means that SCI was covering a decreasing part of the traditional scientific literature. There are also clear indications that the coverage by SCI is especially low in some of the scientific areas with the highest growth rate, including computer science and engineering sciences. The role of conference proceedings, open access archives and publications published on the net is increasing, especially in scientific fields with high growth rates, but this has only partially been reflected in the databases. The new publication channels challenge the use of the big databases in measurements of scientific productivity or output and of the growth rate of science. Because of the declining coverage and this challenge it is problematic that SCI has been used and is used as the dominant source for science indicators based on publication and citation numbers. The limited data available for social sciences show that the growth rate in SSCI was remarkably low and indicate that the coverage by SSCI was declining over time. National Science Indicators from Thomson Reuters is based solely on SCI, SSCI and Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI). Therefore the declining coverage of the citation databases problematizes the use of this source.
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              The Development of Open Access Journal Publishing from 1993 to 2009

              Open Access (OA) is a model for publishing scholarly peer reviewed journals, made possible by the Internet. The full text of OA journals and articles can be freely read, as the publishing is funded through means other than subscriptions. Empirical research concerning the quantitative development of OA publishing has so far consisted of scattered individual studies providing brief snapshots, using varying methods and data sources. This study adopts a systematic method for studying the development of OA journals from their beginnings in the early 1990s until 2009. Because no comprehensive index of OA articles exists, systematic manual data collection from journal web sites was conducted based on journal-level data extracted from the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). Due to the high number of journals registered in the DOAJ, almost 5000 at the time of the study, stratified random sampling was used. A separate sample of verified early pioneer OA journals was also studied. The results show a very rapid growth of OA publishing during the period 1993–2009. During the last year an estimated 191 000 articles were published in 4769 journals. Since the year 2000, the average annual growth rate has been 18% for the number of journals and 30% for the number of articles. This can be contrasted to the reported 3,5% yearly volume increase in journal publishing in general. In 2009 the share of articles in OA journals, of all peer reviewed journal articles, reached 7,7%. Overall, the results document a rapid growth in OA journal publishing over the last fifteen years. Based on the sampling results and qualitative data a division into three distinct periods is suggested: The Pioneering years (1993–1999), the Innovation years (2000–2004), and the Consolidation years (2005–2009).

                Author and article information

                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Data curationRole: Formal analysisRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: Project administrationRole: SoftwareRole: ValidationRole: VisualizationRole: Writing – original draftRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Editor
                PLoS One
                PLoS ONE
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, CA USA )
                24 October 2018
                : 13
                : 10
                [1 ] The Institute of Occupational Medicine, Social Medicine and Environmental Medicine, Goethe-University, Frankfurt, Germany
                KU Leuven, BELGIUM
                Author notes

                Competing Interests: The author has declared that no competing interests exist.

                © 2018 David A. Groneberg

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Figures: 5, Tables: 0, Pages: 14
                The author received no specific funding for this work.
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                Bibliometric data underlying the study were collected from the Web of Science database and are owned by Clarivate Analytics. Any researcher with access to the Web of Science database may recreate the data set using the methods described in the paper. Researchers who do not have access to Web of Science should contact Clarivate Analytics to obtain a license. As per Clarivate Analytic terms of use, the authors may also be able to provide limited access to data, subject their agreement.



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