Do discounted journal access programs help researchers in sub-Saharan Africa? A bibliometric analysis
Author: Davis, Philip M.
Source: Learned Publishing, Volume 24, Number 4, October 2011 , pp. 287-298(12)
Abstract:Prior research has suggested that providing free and discounted access to the scientific literature to researchers in low-income countries increases article production and citation. Using traditional bibliometric indicators for institutions in sub-Saharan Africa, we analyze whether institutional access to TEEAL (a digital collection of journal articles in agriculture and allied subjects) increases: (i) article production; (ii) reference length; and (iii) number of citations to journals included in the TEEAL collection. Our analysis is based on nearly 20,000 articles – containing half a million references – published between 1988 and 2009 at 70 institutions in 11 African countries. We report that access to TEEAL does not appear to result in higher article production, although it does lead to longer reference lists (an additional 2.6 references per paper) and a greater frequency of citations to TEEAL journals (an additional 0.4 references per paper), compared to non-subscribing institutions. We discuss how traditional bibliometric indicators may not provide a full picture of the effectiveness of free and discounted literature programs.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: October 1, 2011
- Editor in Chief: Alan Singleton
North American Editor: Diane Scott-Lichter
Reviews Editor: Pippa Smart
Learned Publishing is the journal of the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers, published in collaboration with the Society for Scholarly Publishing. The journal is published quarterly in January/April/July/October.
Learned Publishing articles are available free online to members of ALPSP and SSP.
ALPSP members: log in to www.alpsp.org. If you do not have a password contact firstname.lastname@example.org
SSP members: log in to the Member Center using your membership username and password. Further information email@example.com