Independent intellectual creative capacity developed through research is essential in enabling countries to take control of exploring, planning, and implementing their own most appropriate sustainable development paths. Given the scarce financial resources in many countries, areas of research focus must be carefully chosen so as to achieve maximum value from investment at a level that will have noticeable positive impact upon society. In pursuit of its core objectives to study the scientific and academic research from a scientific point of view – the dynamics of scientific research and its connections to technology, innovation and society through the use of bibliometric indices and other innovation strategies, ITU’s Scientometrics Lab has been working on several research projects.

Among these programs, a key project is the ITU Quality Research Rankings, which is intended to provide objective data and analyses to benchmark research performance in traditional disciplinary subject areas and in interdisciplinary areas for the purpose of strengthening the quality and impact of research. The ITU Research Rankings supports universities to determine their own research profile and identify niche areas in which they can excel; to make more rational strategic and resource allocation decisions; and to publicize program strengths.

A central tenet driving the ITU Research Rankings is to provide insight to support the diversity of university research. To do so, university research performance is analyzed at a finer level of detail than has previously been done by any national or international ranking or evaluation system. In addition to broad subject categories like Engineering and Medicine, the ITU Research Rankings provides detailed subject categories like Aerospace Engineering and Cardiology. The result is a system that is able to highlight the performance of universities with particular niche strengths and not only the largest and most comprehensive institutions.




The analytical tools are flexible so as to permit each user to focus on aspects of university research performance most relevant to his/her needs. The ITU Research Rankings provide two functionalities: rating and benchmarking (in progress). The rating function permits users to rate universities either overall, in any of the 27 broad subject areas, or in any of 250 niche subject areas by selecting subject areas according to their needs. The benchmarking function permits universities covered by the system to compare their research performance with the performance of a benchmarking group universities of their choosing, again either overall or in any of the subject areas.

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