Phi Beta Iota: Most serious analysts now understand Citation Analytics 101. It’s time to move to Citation Analytics 202, and there is no better way to introduce the art of the possible than by pointing to Kevin W. Boyack, Katy Borner, and Richard Klavans (2007), “Mapping the Structure and Evolution of Chemistry Research (11th International Conference of Scientometrics and Infometrics, pp. 112-123.
There are several take-aways from this article, which is more or less the “coming out” of the Klavens-inspired infometrics field now that he has won his law-suit and has unchallenged access to all Institute of Scientific Information (ISI) access [this was one of the sources we used to win the Burundi Exercise before the Aspin-Brown Commission in 1995].
“Science is a voyage of discovery and Katy Börner has provided its first atlas. This excellent book offers a compendium of all that is best in explaining visual maps of our scientific knowledge.”
—Michael Batty, University College London, author of Cities and Complexity: Understanding Cities with Cellular Automata, Agent-Based Models, and Fractals (MIT Press)
Cartographic maps have guided our explorations for centuries, allowing us to navigate the world. Science maps have the potential to guide our search for knowledge in the same way, helping us navigate, understand, and communicate the dynamic and changing structure of science and technology. Allowing us to visualize scientific results, science maps help us make sense of the avalanche of data generated by scientific research today. Atlas of Science, features more than thirty full-page science maps, fifty data charts, a timeline of science-mapping milestones, and 500 color images; it serves as a sumptuous visual index to the evolution of modern science and as an introduction to “the science of science”—charting the trajectory from scientific concept to published results.
Atlas of Science, based on the popular exhibit “Places & Spaces: Mapping Science,” describes and displays successful mapping techniques. The heart of the book is a visual feast: Claudius Ptolemy’s Cosmographia World Map from 1482; a guide to a PhD thesis that resembles a subway map; “the structure of science” as revealed in a map of citation relationships in papers published in 2002; a periodic table; a history flow visualization of the Wikipedia article on abortion; a globe showing the worldwide distribution of patents; a forecast of earthquake risk; hands-on science maps for kids; and many more. Each entry includes the story behind the map and biographies of its makers.
Not even the most brilliant minds can keep up with today’s deluge of scientific results. Science maps show us the landscape of what we know.
Exhibition (Ongoing) at National Science Foundation, Washington, D.C.; The Institute for Research Information and Quality Assurance, Bonn, Germany; and Storm Hall, San Diego State College
Elsevier is now commercializing what Dick has been doing for the last twenty years in one-of productions, and we believe this capability will be extraordinary, not only in performance measurement and performance enhancement for specific disciplinary units, but in demanding that inter-disciplinary and integrative problem-finding and solving come back into being.
Visit Dick Klavans, the top gun for mapping science & technology across all boundaries. Below, with Brad Ashton, his co-author forKeeping Abreast of Science and Technology: Technical Intelligence for Business, is the lecture he presented at OSS ’02 on this topic:
Dick is President and Chief Executive Officer of Maps of Science, having founded the company in 1991. Between 1991 and 2000, he created maps of science for large pharmaceutical, chemical and physics-based firms. He completely rewrote the computer algorithms in 2000, and continues to modify them in order to generate the most accurate maps possible. Dick, and Chief Technical Officer Kevin Boyack have a strong publication record on mapping science, and are considered world leaders in this area (see bibliography). We met Dick in the 1990’s when we were exploring how best to identify the top 100 experts on anything and everything, and he is still the master, aided by an exclusive total right of access to all citation analysis data owned by and generated by the Institute of Scientific Information (ISI) founded by Eugene Garfield (a small part of our Aspin-Brown Commission testimony in 1995 that persauded them the US Intelligence Community was “severely deficient” in not being able to do what OSS CEO did with six telephone calls).
Below is Dick’s OSS ’02 workshop on Technology Mapping, done with Brad Ashton, his co-author in producing what is still the best book on the subject, Keeping Abreast of Science and Technology: Technical Intelligence for Business.
Best book on the market for technical business intelligence,
April 8, 2000
W. Bradford Ashton
Dick is a genius, and he and Bradford Ashton have pulled together a number of very fine contributions in this book. Still, they sum it up nicely in the concluding chapter: “The formal practice of developing technical intelligence in American business is only in its infancy.” They have a nice appendix of sources on scientific and technical intelligence that is missing a few big obvious sources like the Canadian Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (CISTI) and the Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) as well as the Institute of Scientific Information (ISI) and several smaller sources. On balance, this technical intelligence community is, as Bradford notes, in its infancy. It is U.S. centric, does not yet understand operational security and counterintelligence, is weak of cost intelligence, relies too heavily on registered patents, and has too few practical successes stories. Especially troubling is the recent trend within DIA and the Air Force of cutting off all funding for open source exploitation of Chinese and other foreign S&T sources, combined with a dismantling by many corporations of their libraries and most basic market research functions. This book is an essential reference and I admire its authors greatly-sadly, they are part of a small minority that has not yet found its full voice.