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Whose Metrics? How metrics might serve scholars...

Dear colleagues,

Political and commercial concerns currently seem to drive the 
development of metrics, e.g. research assessment exercises or the 
journal usage factor. Librarians and publishers seem keen on 
supporting assessment regimes or developing metrics for 
themselves (e.g. Project COUNTER; PRIUS - Publisher and 
Institutional Repository Usage Statistics).
However, should it not be of paramount concern to publishers, 
librarians & repositories to develop metric information services 
that are of direct utility to scholars?

Following an ALPSP event in June and a suggestion by Sally Morris 
to put into writing the argument for developing metrics as 
scholarly information service, the pre-print is now available for 
comment: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1464706

The argument proceeds in six steps: (1) the problematic and 
controversial nature of assessment metrics is discussed; (2) the 
limited value of current metric information services is outlined; 
(3) the notion of metrics as research information services is 
clarified; (4) some examples of such services are offered; (5) 
the potential value is sketched from the perspective of a 
postdoc; (6) I suggest that more metric information services 
could be built as tried-and-tested technology and methods are 

Some services mentioned: Journal impact factor, journal usage 
factor, GoPubMed, SSRN CiteReader, RePEc LogEc, RePEc Citec, 
SPIRES, Harzing POP, Webometrics, Scopus, Google Scholar, 
Citebase, CiteSeerX, CERIF, H-index (and variants such as 
Contemporary H-index, Trend H-index, Objects H-index).

Armbruster, Chris, Whose Metrics? On Building Citation, Usage and 
Access Metrics as Information Service for Scholars
Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1464706

Chris Armbruster
Publications and working papers available in Open Access