By sylvie | February 25, 2009
In Webology, volume 5, issue 4, December 2008, Alireza Noruzi claims in his editorial to prove a correlation between scientific collaboration and number of citations associated with the papers produced by these teams. In order to do this, he looks at the most cited papers and finds that a vast majority of them were produced by a group of researchers. Case closed, right?
Well, no. The thing is, to show that scientific collaboration will magically make your papers more cited, you would also have to show that the least cited papers are mostly produced by single authors. Then, and only then, can you point to your results and say, see, kids? You need to play together!
The results mentioned above could simply be the result of more and more papers being produced by groups of researchers. If that were the case, then you would also find that the majority of papers that are not being cited by anyone are also being written collaboratively. And then you would have a correlation that would be close to 0.
Topics: Collaborative writing |