Outsider, Peers, and Stars: Analysing Scientists' Integration into Scientific Communities with Scientometric Indicators
by Grit Laudel / Jochen Gläser
Scientometric indicators have been used to analyse the development of East German scientists' cognitive integration from 1985 to 1998. The indicators included publications in SCI-Journals, the journals' impact factors, Co-authorships and Citations. Methodological problems that affected the analysis were serious flaws in journals' impact factors as provided by the ISI, the cited half-lifes' variation between journals, and the general problem of how the SCI database depicts actual interactions in research.
Three types of integration paths could be distinguished: (1) Scientists who have always been integrated in their communities but improved their integration after 1990, (2) Scientists who had not been integrated until the fall of the German wall but who underwent an integration process after 1990 and (3) Scientists who had not been integrated until 1990 and whose status hasn't change after the Fall of the German wall. Qualitative data about scientists' social integration support the findings of the scientometric analysis.