Apples and oranges: The aggregation problem in publications analysis

Geraint Johnes, Jill Johnes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


A major difficulty with bibliometric measures of departmental research contributions based upon publications counts has concerned the summing of publications of different types. An attempt is made in this paper to bypass this aggregation problem by appeal to the methods of Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA). In this way we investigate the technical efficiency of UK university departments of economics as producers of research. The data set used is an extended version of the one which informed the recent Universities Funding Council peer review, and the results obtained here are compared with those obtained by the Council. We conclude that, although due caution is needed in the interpretation of results, DEA has a positive contribution to make in the development of meaningful indicators of university performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-365
Number of pages13
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 1992
Externally publishedYes


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