The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA)
The École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS) is among the first Canadian universities to sign the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), which promotes parameters other than the journal impact factor to assess the results of scholarly research. As such, pre-publication versions of articles, data sets, software, protocols, training of researchers, social impacts and policy changes that result from research will now be considered in evaluating the research results of ÉTS researchers.
“This represents an enormous change in research culture around the world and we are proud to be embracing these principles. We have begun to put in place concrete measures to meet our commitment,” said Ghyslain Gagnon, dean of research at the ÉTS.
The ÉTS joins 19,013 organizations and individuals from 144 countries, including the Fonds de recherche du Québec (FRQ) and the three major Canadian granting agencies, who have adopted the DORA as a measure for assessing research.
It should be noted that the use of impact factors has been questioned for several years by many data science experts. Among the criticism is the fact that the impact factor varies greatly from one field to another, that there is some confusion about what can be considered a citation, and that it can be inflated by citations from editorials, letters, or media that are not recognized for the purpose of calculating the impact factor. In addition, prestigious journals with a high impact factor are charging authors increasingly more, which hinders the transmission of knowledge and creates inequities between wealthy and less wealthy researchers.
The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) recognizes the need to improve how outputs of scholarly research are evaluated in order to go beyond the journal impact factor, which is widely used in academia. The declaration is comprised of a set of recommendations developed by a group of journal editors and publishers at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology held in San Francisco in 2012. For more information: https:/
École de technologie supérieure is one of ten constituents of the Université du Québec network. It trains engineers and researchers who are recognized for their practical and innovative approach, the development of new technologies and their skill at transferring their knowledge to companies. Almost one-quarter of all engineers in Québec graduated from ÉTS, which boasts 11,000 students, including 2,650 at the graduate and post-graduate level. ÉTS specializes in applied training and research in engineering, and maintains a unique partnership with the business sector and with industry. For more information, please visit etsmtl.ca.