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Research publications are the embodiments of the intellectual thought contents expressed in published literature whose key objective is to transmit innovative ideas or information to any specific field of knowledge towards the further development of a subject or a discipline. In this respect bibliometric study is regarded as one of the crucial areas of research in the field of Library and Information Science. Moreover, bibliometrics study is used as an instrument in the collection building policy by providing the precise and much needed information to the managers to take the right decision in right time as to what documents they should select and what documents they should discard from the existing collections of their respective libraries. Contextually, the present study attempts to measure the publication traits of a premier Indian referred journal namely, Annals of Library and Information Studies (ALIS) from 2002 to 2010.
ALIS is a leading library science journal being published by The National Institute of Science Communication and Information Resources (NISCAIR), New Delhi on quarterly basis. This journal publishes articles, documentation notes and research reviews on library, documentation and information science, information systems, services and products, information technology, information users, bibliometrics, scientometrics and informetrics, education and training and other related topics (www.niscair.res.in). Therefore a bibliometric study of this journal is of immense significance.
Review of Literature
Though the statistics was applied to study the literature in any subject but the first recorded study of Bibliometric topic was in 1917 by Coles and Eales (1917) with the title 'Statistical analysis of literature of history of comparative anatomy' which served as a model for applying the counting technique in the evaluation of international activities. Pritchard (1969) first introduced the term 'Bibliometrics' in 1969 to mean 'the application of mathematics and statistical methods to books and other media of communications'. Roy (1983) has defined bibliometrics as a 'study of the process of information use by analyzing the characteristics of documents and their distribution by statistical methods. Mote and Deshmukh (1996) in their study on Annals of Library Science and Documentation found that journals are most cited form of communication amongst the library and information scientists and the source journal is the most cited publication. Shokeen and Kaushik (2004) in their study on Indian Journal of Plant Physiology found that journal articles are predominant with 81% of total citations. The ratio of author self citation to total citations is 1:16.65. The ratio of Journal Self Citation to total citation is 1:31.91. The results also highlight that 398 citations are below 10 years old, whereas 358 citations are below 20 years but more than 10 years old.
In the aforesaid direction, Jena (2007) in his study on Indian Journal of Fibre and Textile Research, 1996–2004' revealed various details of the trend of publications of this journal. Biswas, Roy and Sen (2007) conducted a bibliometric study on Economic Botany from 1994-2003 and revealed that among the citations, books accounted for 59%, journals 41% while, e-citations were quite negligible. Furthermore, they found that the highest numbers of contributions were emanated from academic institutions such as universities. Zao, et al.(2007) in their study on Educational Psychology identified six clusters of journals, including general educational psychology/learning/literacy, school psychology, measurement and counseling, Germany-based educational psychology, creativity, and the other related themes. Furthermore, the study revealed that a small number of journals accounted for a relatively high percentage of the intra-disciplinary citations; the majority of the selected journals cited more than being cited in the field. Turk (2008)indicated that there is quite a uniform way about methodology of citation counts and substantial research about motivation for URL citations to LIS articles. Willet (2008) found that many of the most cited papers in the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling describe software packages that play a key role in modern chemoinformatics research. Zainab, Ani and Anur (2009) in their bibliometric study on Malayasian Journal of Computer Science evaluated the article productivity of the journal from 1985 to 2007 using Lotka's Law. The study further revealed authorship, co-authorship pattern by degree of authors' collaboration that ranged from 0.25 to 0.95. Asha and Anil (2010) under took a bibliometric study of 4798 citations appended to 400 articles in five volumes (2003-2007) of the Indian Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics and found that the most cited documents are articles from research journals and the foreign authors have contributed more than Indian authors. Swain (2011) in his scientometric analysis of Library Philosophy and Practice from 2004 to 2009 found that the degree of collaboration in LPP ranged from 0.222 to 0.52 and the highest numbers of contributors hailed from Nigeria, followed by USA, India, and Iran. Swain and Panda (2012) conducted a bibliometric study on Journal of Intellectual Property Rights, 2002 to 2010 and found that due to absolute domination of solo contributions, the visibility of collaborative contribution was found remarkably less. The study further revealed that about one third of the total publications received citations, more than half of the cited articles carried just one citation, one fourth got 2 citations, and the rest received citations between 3 to 9 times. Jena, Swain and Sahu (2012) in their bibliometric study of The Electronic Library from 2003 to 2009 revealed some interesting bibliometric traits of this journal. Taking the above mentioned literature into context, the present study aims to provide some value addition to the corpus of literature on bibliometric studies.