About the Journal
Research Evaluation Scope Statement (revised 2015)
By Diana Hicks, Thed van Leeuwen, Jordi Molas-Gallart
Research Evaluation is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed, international journal. Its subject matter is the evaluation of activities concerned with scientific research, technological development and innovation. This covers a very broad range of potential topics. The evaluation subjects can range from individuals, through research funding or performing organisations, up to inter-country comparisons of research and innovation performance, from single research projects to complex policy interventions. We cover public and private sectors, natural and life sciences as well as social sciences and humanities. The term 'evaluation' applies to all policy stages from priority setting and proposals, through the monitoring of on-going projects and programmes, the ex-post assessment of their outputs and outcomes, and the integration of evaluation results into policy. Papers on methods are also welcome. Research Evaluation is not committed to any specific approach or philosophy, quantitative, qualitative or otherwise. Please refer to the “Frequently Asked Questions” on the journal website for answers to some common doubts expressed by potential contributors.
Research Evaluation has readers in universities, governments, research councils, funding agencies, consultancies, etc., around the world. It is indexed in the Social Science Citation Index (Web of Science), SCOPUS and many other databases.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is the intended audience?
People who evaluate research and innovation activities or policies.
Do you publish bibliometrics papers?
There is a strong relationship between scientometrics and research evaluation, and Web of Science classifies this journal into “Information Science & Library Science”. Many papers in Research Evaluation do work with bibliometric data. Their main purpose, however, is not to develop a bibliometric technique or to assess an existing indicator or technique. Instead, they aim to address an evaluation problem, showing how existing or new indicators and analytical techniques can help in the assessment of research and innovation activities and policies. We think there is a simple rule of thumb for potential contributors considering whether their work is within scope: if the audience for your paper is not people who evaluate research and innovation activities or policies, then this journal is not for you.
I have an evaluation report, will you publish it?
Perhaps counter intuitively, the purpose of the journal is not to publish evaluation reports. To be suitable for the journal, a paper should do more than present a summary of an evaluation carried out for a customer. There must be some reason that other scholars, not associated with the evaluated entity, would like to read the paper. Such reasons might include: methodological advances of broad applicability, new insights into theory, evidence of effects of evaluation on the research community, implications of new accountability mandates, new types of evaluation, confirming or refuting previously accepted best practice, reasons why methods that work in one context do or do not work in different contexts, etc. If you have conducted an evaluation and would like to publish something from it in the journal, we suggest that you look at past issues to find examples of others building scholarly papers using the data from an evaluation. We recommend the following paper as a start:
Counting quality? The Czech performance-based research funding system by Barbara Good, Niki Vermeulen, Brigitte Tiefenthaler, and Erik Arnold. Research Evaluation 24.2 (2015): 91-105.