Mapping the research productivity and scholarly impact of the traditional medicine scholars in Tanzania: A scientometric analysis

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International Journal of Digital Library Services


A scientometric analysis was conducted to map out the research productivity and scholarly impact of researchers at the Institute of Traditional Medicine (ITM) in Tanzania for the period between 1980 and 2013. The study analyzed the growth of the ITM’s scholarly literature; ascertained the year-wise distribution of publications; determined the authorship pattern and degree of collaboration; and analyzed individual scholars’ productivity and impact. Data were obtained using the Publish or Perish software that employs Google Scholar to retrieve scholars’ publications and their citations. The findings show that there were a total of 381 publications published between 1980 and 2013, giving an average of 11.2 publications per year. The year 2012 had the most (12.3%) number of publications followed by 2007 and 2008 with 8.9% of all publications each. A vast majority (91.9%) of the publications were multiple-authored with 35.2% of the publications having six or more authors. The degree of collaboration was 0.92 and the ratio between team work and single author work was 11:1. Overall, M.J. Moshi and Z.H. Mbwambo were the top ranking scholars followed by R.L.A. Mahunnah and F.C. Uiso. All ITM researchers showed variation in their performance as no single scholar maintained the same rank in all nine metrics. The study findings call for scholars to recognize the importance of publishing in visible journals in order to receive large citation counts. Institutions are urged to employ scientometrics in evaluating the research performance of their scholars since such techniques take into account a combination of several measures.


International Journal of Digital Library Services, Vol.3, July –September 2013, Issue-3


Research productivity, Scholarly impact, Traditional medicine, Scientometrics, Tanzania