Re: On Metrics and Metaphysics

From: Leslie Carr <>
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 09:39:44 +0100

On 21 Oct 2008, at 18:23, J.F.Rowland wrote:

> There is a real and valid point in Heather's message, and simply
> saying 'use
> other metrics' is vague, to say the least. Please specify what
> metrics
> might be used to provide a valid quality measure to the work of
> researchers
> who study minority subjects which will excite interest, and
> therefore usage,
> and citations, from only a few people worldwide.

Perhaps I might be permitted to throw the ball back in your court. How
would *you* (or Heather, or the author) know that a paper in the
(narrow but important) field has excited the interest of anyone
worldwide? Or even excited the interest of "the right people"? Once
you can answer that, to the satisfaction of the author and their
community, then Stevan (for you challenged him in particular) might be
able to devise a metric for measuring it. Or, indirectly, devise a
test for whether a proposed battery of metrics will act as a
reasonable proxy for the judgement of experts in the field.

Les Carr
Received on Wed Oct 22 2008 - 10:54:58 BST

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