Mapping the Research Productivity of Three Medical Sciences Journals Published in Saudi Arabia: A Comparative Bibliometric Study.

Author:Alanazi, Ahmad A.
  1. Introduction

    Saudi Arabia (SA) has been playing a leading role in the development of scientific knowledge in the Arab world and progressing rapidly in field of scholarly communication. The Saudi government provides a huge support for improving education, research and innovations. Therefore, the number of degree awarding research institutions and scholarly journals has increased since 2000, accordingly the research activities particularly in health sciences have been growing (Al-Bishri, 2013; Latif, 2015; Meo, Hassan, & Usmani, 2013). Scientific productivity is usually considered fundamental to scientific career advancement. To examine and assess the scientific productivity of publications in any particular subject at any specific time, a bibliometric analysis is useful via the use of citation indicators. This type of statistical analysis was firstly described by Prichard (1969) as "statistical bibliography" and defined as "the application of mathematics and statistical methods to books and other media of communication." (p. 348)

    The bibliometric studies in health sciences have become popular because funding organizations, scientists and policy makers request frequent assessment of the research activities. The bibliometric studies assist in (a) classifying weak and strong areas of published research, (b) identifying productive researchers and institutions, and (c) recognizing collaborative patterns to conduct research. Scientific progress of any institution or specialty can be determined by the growth and the impact of the published research (Baladi & Umedani 2017; Ullah et al., 2016). Scholarly journals are the major channel for communication and disseminating research results to the scientific community around the world. These journals allow researchers with a platform to publish their research findings and provide up-to-date information in the research field of their interest (Mohan & Rajgoli 2017). The present study aimed to compare bibliometric indicators and ascertain the growth of research outcomes among Saudi medical research journals. To combine between old and new established journals with different scope and spectrum, three journals (a) Saudi Journal of Medicine and Medical Sciences (SJMMS), (b) Journal of Saudi Heart Association (JSHA), (c) Journal of Infection and Public Health (JIPH) for the period of 2013 to 2017 were selected.

    1.1 Saudi Journal of Medicine & Medical Sciences (SJMMS)

    SJMMS is a peer-reviewed journal published by Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University. This journal publishes three issues in English per year, and its first issue was published in January 2013. The scope of SJMMS covers the area of health specialties. SJMMS is available in print and online (

    1.2 Journal of the Saudi Heart Association (JSHA)

    JSHA is a peer-reviewed journal published by King Saud University in collaboration with Elsevier. JSHA is the official publication of the Saudi Heart Association. This journal publishes four issues in English per year, and its first issue was published in 1988. The scope of JSHA is cardiovascular diseases. JSHA is available in print and online (

    1.3 Journal of Infection and Public Health (JIPH)

    JIPH is a peer-reviewed journal published by the Ministry of National Guard Health Affairs, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences (KSAU-HS), and the Saudi Association for Public Health in collaboration with Elsevier. JIPH published two issues in English per year in 2008, but JIPH has started publishing bi-monthly since 2011. The scope of the journal covers the area of infection prevention and control, microbiology, infectious diseases, public health and the application of healthcare epidemiology. JIPH is available in print and online (

  2. Methods

    This is an introspective observational study carried out in the College of Applied...

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