Trajectories and Regimes in Research and Knowledge Evaluations: Contributions to an Evolutionary Theory of Citation?

26 Pages Posted: 24 Apr 2022

See all articles by Loet Leydesdorff

Loet Leydesdorff

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)

Lin Zhang

Wuhan University - School of Information Management

Paul Wouters

Leiden University - Centre for Science and Technology Studies

Date Written: April 2, 2022

Abstract

Citation analysis can provide us with models of the evolutionary dynamics in interhuman communications. In the cited direction, observable citations can be aligned along historical trajectories and used for institutionally oriented research evaluation. In the citing direction, the knowledge contents are evaluated. The forward (cited) and the reflexive (citing) directions are relevant for research and knowledge evaluations, respectively, and for an evolutionary theory of citation. By recursively selecting on historical trajectories, an evolutionary regime of expectations can be a consequence of the cycling of information. Under selection pressure, orders of expectations co-evolve on top of the historical trajectories. We propose a model with indicators for measurement in both the cited and citing directions using (i) a set of papers in the environment of a single journal (Public Understanding of Science), (ii) a random sample of journals, and (iii) the entire journal set of the Web-of-Science (more than 10,000 journals). The models and measurements serve as a proof of concept.

Keywords: interdisciplinarity, synergy, bibliographic coupling, co-citation, research evaluation, knowledge evaluation

Suggested Citation

Leydesdorff, Loet and Zhang, Lin and Wouters, Paul, Trajectories and Regimes in Research and Knowledge Evaluations: Contributions to an Evolutionary Theory of Citation? (April 2, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4073223 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4073223

Loet Leydesdorff (Contact Author)

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) ( email )

PO Box 15793
Amsterdam, 1001 NG
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://www.leydesdorff.net

Lin Zhang

Wuhan University - School of Information Management ( email )

Luojia Hill
Wuhan, Wubei
China

Paul Wouters

Leiden University - Centre for Science and Technology Studies ( email )

Leiden
Netherlands

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