Book Review: Isabell M.Welpe, Jutta Wollersheim, Margit Osterloh, Stefanie Ringelhan (eds.) (2015) Incentives and performance:governance of research organizations
Incentives and Performance: Governance of Research Organizations is a collection of 29 papers, which discuss modern approaches to performance management of research institutions. Special focus is put on application of bibliometric indicators (e.g. citation index, journal impact factor, number of publications) in performance evaluation. It is argued in preface that a high citation count does not necessarily indicate high-quality research. On contrary, under the pressure of bibliometric indicators the quality of publications s deteorating. This approach decreases intrinsic work motivation and the role of a scientist in public sector. ‘Setting wrong incentives using indicators leads to useless outcomes and thus to deformation of research organizations.” Some authors argue that modern universities “became publication factories, bound to maximize their publication output. Hence, the ideal professor is a mixture of fundraiser, project manager, and mass publisher (mostly as co-author of publications written by his or her assistants as he or she has no more time to do research)”
The publication was sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (grant no. 01PW11006).