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Who reads international Egyptian academic articles? An altmetrics analysis of Mendeley readership categories

Metwaly Ali Mohamed Eldakar ()
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Metwaly Ali Mohamed Eldakar: Minia University

Scientometrics, 2019, vol. 121, issue 1, No 6, 105-135

Abstract: Abstract Mendeley is a social network that allows researchers worldwide to discover, search and share resources and to cooperate with peer researchers. We can recognize a large amount of exhaustive information about who reads research articles and the contexts in which research articles are read by using data about people who register in Mendeley as readers of articles. The purpose of this paper is to explore different types of users of international Egyptian academic articles indexed in Scopus across four major fields: health sciences, life sciences, physical sciences and social sciences inside and outside academia. The aim is to determine the impact and use of international Egyptian academic articles in Mendeley compared to their citation impact and to explore whether there is any correlation between Mendeley readership counts and the citation indicators for these publications. Furthermore, this study analyses readers’ categories and discovers their country locations according to the data retrieved from Mendeley profiles. The data for this study are collected from the Scopus database. Webometric Analyst 2.0 is used to retrieve Mendeley readership statistics for all collected articles. This information will help in understanding how and to what extent Mendeley readership metrics are applicable in assessing the publications of Egyptian authors and in understanding the usage versus citation pattern and impact of Egyptian scientific outputs on global society. The results indicate that the majority of readers in all disciplines are Ph.D. students, master’s students, and post-graduate students; however, other types of academics are also represented. The findings also indicate that the highest correlations between citations and Mendeley readership counts are found for the types of users who frequently author academic papers, except for professors in some sub-disciplines. Regarding country locations, Egyptian international publications are mostly used by users from more than 100 countries worldwide. However, the majority in every field are from the USA. Overall, this study concludes that Egyptian researchers have great international influence on global society. The study suggests that Mendeley readership may reflect usage similarly to conventional citation impacts if the data are limited to readers who are also authors, without the delay of influence measured by citation indicators. Meanwhile, Mendeley data can disclose the invisible impact of research publications, such as educational value for non-author users inside academia or the impact of research papers on practice for users outside academia. Finally, Mendeley readership statistics can reflect the distribution of users in various countries and potential readers worldwide, identify the invisible impact of the research output per country on global society, and be used as a complementary and informative tool for citation databases in explicating the influence of scientific outputs.

Keywords: Altmetrics; Mendeley; Egyptian research; Research impact; Readership analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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DOI: 10.1007/s11192-019-03189-7

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