Moed, HF; Garfield, E "In basic science the percentage of 'authoritative' references decreases as bibliographies become shorter" SCIENTOMETRICS, 60 (3): 295-303 2004
garfield at CODEX.CIS.UPENN.EDU
Thu Oct 7 11:48:50 EDT 2004
Henk F. Moed : Moed at cwts.leidenuniv.nl
Eugene Garfield: garfield at codex.cis.upenn.edu
FULL TEXT OF THE ARTICLE AVAILABLE AT :
Author(s): Moed, HF; Garfield, E
Title: In basic science the percentage of 'authoritative' references
decreases as bibliographies become shorter
Source: SCIENTOMETRICS, 60 (3): 295-303 2004
Language: English Document Type: Article
The empirical question addressed in this contribution is: How does the
relative frequency at which authors in a research field cite 'authoritative'
documents in the reference lists in their papers vary with the number of
references such papers contain? 'Authoritative' documents are defined as
those that are among the ten percent most frequently cited items in a
research field. It is assumed that authors who write papers with relatively
short reference lists are more selective in what they cite than authors who
compile long reference lists. Thus, by comparing in a research field the
fraction of references of a particular type in short reference lists to that
in longer lists, one can obtain an indication of the importance of that
type. Our analysis suggests that in basic science fields such as physics or
molecular biology the percentage of 'authoritative' references decreases as
bibliographies become shorter. In other words, when basic scientists are
selective in referencing behavior, references to 'authoritative' documents
are dropped more readily than other types. The implications of this
empirical finding for the debate on normative versus constructive citation
theories are discussed.
Addresses: Leiden Univ, Ctr Sci & Technol Studies, NL-2300 RB Leiden,
Netherlands; Inst Sci Informat, Philadelphia, PA 19104 USA]
Reprint Address: Moed, HF, Leiden Univ, Ctr Sci & Technol Studies, POB 9555,
NL-2300 RB Leiden, Netherlands.
E-mail Address: moed at cwts.leidenuniv.nl
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Cited Reference Count: 6 Times Cited: 0
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