A new way to evaluate research

The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in Canada has developed a tool they hope will better measure the quality and impact of research coming out of the global south. They want to¬†ensure that researchers who are working on projects that positively impact their region are evaluated on criteria that make sense. Metrics like citation count and h-index don’t necessarily measure the rigor and usefulness of research.

The IDRC calls this tool Research Quality Plus (RQ+) and it has three parts:

  • Identify contextual factors – political, data, research environment, maturity of the scientific field, and how much the project focuses on capacity strengthening
  • Articulate dimensions of quality – scientific integrity, legitimacy, importance, and positioning for use
  • Use rubrics & evidence – assessments have to be systematic, comparable and based on evidence (both qualitative and quantitative)

You can read more about this tool in Nature or on the IDRC website.