Trends and patterns of medical and health research at Moi University, Kenya, between 2002 and 2014: an informetrics study
AbstractResearch productivity and visibility are becoming increasingly important in the individual researcher’s pursuit to build his or her research reputation, be promoted to the next academic rank within an institution and gain national and international recognition among peers. This paper analyses the research trends and patterns of the academic staff of the College of Health Sciences (CHS) at Moi University in Kenya between 2002 and 2014 to gauge their research productivity and visibility. The names of the academic staff of the CHS who were in employment at the end of 2012 were listed and subjected to a visibility search on the Publish or Perish software that uses Google Scholar as its data source. The findings on output reveal the following: the trend of publication has shown an upward growth since 2007 and is projected to continue to grow as it approaches linearity, until 2025; the School of Medicine was the most prolific and visible; approximately one third of the publications in the CHS originated in the departments of epidemiology and medicine; full professors’ performance exceeded that of the other ranks; researchers at the CHS rely heavily on a locally-published journal (East African Medical Journal) to publish their research; slightly over two thirds of the publications were singly authored; international collaborations were prominently visible; and most medical and health research conducted at the CHS focused on western Kenya, where Moi University is located. For higher productivity and wider visibility of CHS research, the researchers recommend additional funding; publication of the research through a variety of avenues, including open access journals, and the dissemination of the publications through social media platforms; and strengthening of the international collaboration networks, among others. For purposes of further research, the authors propose a study that will investigate the medical and health research visibility and impact across several institutions in Kenya.
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