Impact factor abandoned by Dutch university in hiring and promotion decisions — Nature

A Dutch university says it is formally abandoning the impact factor — a standard measure of scientific success — in all hiring and promotion decisions. By early 2022, every department at Utrecht University in the Netherlands will judge its scholars by other standards, including their commitment to teamwork and their efforts to promote open science, says Paul Boselie, a governance researcher and the project leader for the university’s new Recognition and Rewards scheme. “Impact factors don’t really reflect the quality of an individual researcher or academic,” he says. “We have a strong belief that something has to change, and abandoning the impact factor is one of those changes.”

#academy #openscience

@arcans Whenever a proxy indicator is used as a performance metric, it stops being a proxy and becomes the true optimization goal, putting all the power of optimization as an incentive to game the process.
Maybe somebody is finally taking the right way out from this. I wish recruiters and evaluators were incentivized to put more effort in actually evaluating quality and contribution in published research.

@arcans of course I didn't come up with this, but I have no scientific support for this consideration, just informal discussions and the personal experience and intuition. But it looks like a general law. Does anybody studying processes, incentives and evaluation have related scientific evidence to back a reform proposal?


@arcans here is my start for examples of how the publishing rewards/punishment system has failed I would love to find a community actually involved in evidence-based activism to push reforms in academia (local university, scientific editors, policy makers, European union / Federal funding / similar international funding bodies).

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