Evaluation of research

Vision

Research is evaluated for various reasons and at various moments in a researcher's career. This is the case for instance in the recruitment and promotion of academics, in the evaluation of a research group, faculty or university, in the evaluation of project proposals and requests for funding and so on.

Considering the importance of evaluations - both for the university and for the researcher - Ghent University stands for a responsible evaluation policy.

Effective, transparent and of high quality

All research evaluations at Ghent University must comply with a number of principles, which together ensure that the evaluation process is tailored to the purpose of the evaluation, is transparent and is carried out by experts.

Diversity of research activities

The quality and impact of research can not only be deduced from the researcher's academic publications, but can be seen in a variety of activities - articles in leading journals in the field, contributions to the societal debate, the economic valorisation of research results and many more. Ghent University values this broad range of research activities. In this way, it offers its researchers the opportunity to make personal choices in the way they shape their research careers. An example of this is the portfolio of research dimensions that is offered within the framework of the career and evaluation policy for professorial staff.

Responsible use of quantitative indicators

The evaluation criteria and method should be chosen so that they fit the purpose of the evaluation and actually capture what is being evaluated. Quantitative indicators may have their place in an assessment, but they must be used responsibly and with caution. Scholarly research is too complex to be captured in a single indicator.
Ghent University offers its researchers - in their role of evaluators - a guideline to help them handle indicators in a responsible way during evaluation. In 2020, Ghent University signed the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment, by which it commits itself, among other things, not to derive the quality of an article from quantitative indicators that depart from information about the journal in which the research was published (such as the Journal Impact Factor).