Researchers
July 29, 2020

Framing Research Productivity Against Academic Goals and Benchmarks

Academic goals and benchmarks are almost always decided through factors such as research productivity and outcomes. Even through big data and bibliometrics, a researcher’s productivity becomes the number one element in determining their scholarly reputation, rather than the impact of the work they produce. Using analysis of a framework of research productivity to determine the effect of them on the overall academic goals and benchmarks must, therefore, be addressed before this system can be used universally.
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One of the underlying measures of how well academic goals and benchmarks are being met is productivity. Other variables rise and fall with the times, but productivity has remained a consistent factor in determining a scholar’s overall reputation, in conjunction with bibliometrics and big data collection.

The problem with this has been that productivity is based on the quantity of output produced by a scholar, not quality, so a framework must be in place to determine the effect of the scholar’s consistent productivity on how the overall academic goals and benchmarks are being met, and it must be a framework that can be used universally because of the implications of a scholar’s reputation on global competition of research resources.

Factors That Determine Research Productivity

In the basic definition of the goal of research, the entire purpose is to find knowledge that hasn’t existed before. Through this search, scientists use both tangible and intangible resources to guide them to their answers.

Because the Digital Era has made it possible for these resources to be readily and easily available, the output of research data has magnified, and the predominance of electronic publishing mediums makes it simple for researchers to publish their findings through open access forums, whether the work is impactful or not, and thus increase what is considered to be their overall productivity.

Framing Productivity in Connection with Academic Goals and Benchmarks

Using benchmarks is a common tool across many industries, including academics, to drive improvement and determine the best practices. Through these benchmarks, increased efficiency is supposed to arrive, as well as better and more impactful instruction through widespread knowledge.

To determine if those benchmarks are being met, performance metrics are used as measurements through bibliometrics and big data collection. These report a scholar’s performance based on a multitude of factors, particularly how often they publish new findings and how impactful those new findings are on the field they are intended to affect.

Recently, bibliometrics have been able to ensure that these indicators are globally used, such as the h-index. This formula tries to put a measure of productivity on a scholar by using quantitative data. However, it does not encompass factors such as the impact of a specific work by the author, how many co-authors are in the byline of the citation, or the field itself, which accounts for different productivity rankings due to specialization.

There must be a way to frame productivity in connection with academic goals and benchmarks in a way that sets a universal standard.

Strategies to Encourage Improved Connectivity Between Productivity and Goals

Until a universal framework is achieved, it’s up to the scholar and the institution in which they are working to ensure that the research and productivity measures correlate with the academic goals and benchmarks already in place.

For this to occur, institutions and scholars can work together to initiate policies that benefit both parties and encourage high productivity combined with more impactful work, such as:

●      Merit pay is given when a scholar has work published in legitimate research journals

●      When those same articles are published in those journals, compensation such as a reduced course load or preferred teaching positions is offered

●      Institutions encourage student and faculty support of those engaged actively in a research project, recognizing and supporting the attempt before the output is achieved.

●      Institutions encourage the department-wide and inter-department collaboration of research in order to promote higher quality outcomes that bring meaningful and impactful results to the community or a larger society

●      Institutions may also encourage cross-institutional research teams working for the good of academic goals and benchmarks in common with all members involved in the research

●      Departments, stakeholders, and the overall institution understand and support the role of family and friends in a researcher’s career and encourage scholars to have a balanced personal and academic life

When all of these factors are in play, scholars are more apt to work harder towards meeting the academic goals and benchmarks with their work, and institutions are more respectful of the scholar, regardless of the reputation they are forming.

Using Impactio to Meet Benchmarks

Benchmarks determined by factors such as citation indicators can be followed when scholars use Impactio as their go-to program for compiling their research. Impactio is an all-in-one platform designed for scholars around the world to help them put together their work in professional profiles and follow up those findings through citation indicators that help determine impactfulness.

When you’re working with your institution to help build your role as a scholarly expert, Impactio is right there with you to help make the workload a little bit easier.

Tags Research Productivity Academic Goals Academic Benchmarks
Jason Collins
Writer
Jason is a writer for many niche brands with experience “bringing stories to life” for both startups and corporate partners.

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