Dr. Eugene Garfield passed away recently. He was a pioneer of scientometrics who established the Institute for Scientific Information which published the Science Citation Index, the precursor to the Web of Science. This index includes bibliographic and citation data from some of the world’s most influential journals. It represents a way to quantify the impact of a piece of research on the community. He was also responsible, with Irving Sher, for developing the journal impact factor. He thought that using the impact factor as a means of evaluating the quality of a paper, researcher, or institution was inappropriate since they were designed to assess which journals should be included in the index. He founded The Scientist out of a belief that there should be a scientific publication that didn’t feature original research and that could discuss policy. He was a mentor to many and is remembered for his generosity, commitment to excellence, and humility.
It should come as no surprise that the Eugene Garfield Information Sciences Pioneer Award has been established in his honor. The award is sponsored by Clarivate Analytics and will be given on a yearly basis to at least one deserving person in information science chosen by a panel of esteemed scientometricians. The online application to be considered for this award should be available in April 2017. The recipient of the award would have conducted what is deemed the most innovative scientometrics research with a global impact. The awardee should be an early-career researcher whose PhD was awarded less than 11 years ago. In addition to receiving the Eugene Garfield Information Sciences Pioneer Award, the recipient will be given in-kind support and access to the Web of Science data.
It should be noted that Clarivate Analytics owes much to Dr. Garfield and continues to build on his early work. Clarivate Analytics already supports the scientometric community by supporting scholarships like the Outstanding Teacher Award and the Dissertation Proposal Award both of which were created in the 1980s by Dr. Garfield. Clarivate also has a thought leadership program which gives researchers access to the Web of Science data. Jessica Turner, global head of government and academia at Clarivate Analytics described Dr. Garfield as a visionary leader, colleague, and friend to many people. She stated that the Eugene Garfield Information Sciences Pioneer Award is a way to honor Dr. Garfield’s legacy and demonstrate Clarivate’s appreciation for the scientometric pioneer.
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