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Cover page of the Journal of Health Sciences


 
 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 208-215

Bibliometric evaluation of published Indian research on “Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices”


1 Department of Community Medicine, North DMC Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, VMMC and Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi, India
3 Department of Respiratory Medicine, ESIC Medical College and Hospital, Faridabad, Haryana, India

Date of Web Publication30-May-2017

Correspondence Address:
Sandeep Sachdeva
Department of Community Medicine, North DMC Medical College and Hindu Rao Hospital, New Delhi - 110 007
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/kleuhsj.ijhs_4_17

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  Abstract 

Objective: Evaluation of knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAPs) based published Indian research on selected parameters.
Methodology: A bibliometric analysis of Indian KAP research manuscript published in journals indexed in PubMed for the last 2 years and/or published in Indian Journal of Community Medicine (IJCM) and Indian Journal of Public Health (IJPH) for the last 15 years (year 2000–2014) was undertaken under certain criteria.
Results: PubMed (n = 196) revealed maximum KAP research undertaken from the states of Karnataka (16.8%) followed by Delhi (9.6%), Maharashtra (9.1%), and more than two states (11.7%). There was poor reflection with no publication of KAP-based research from the states of Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, and Rajasthan, in IJCM and IJPH journals. The geographical representation of country through published manuscript in IJCM was slightly more diverse than IJPH and more than one-fourth manuscripts in IJPH were published from West Bengal only. It was evident that IJCM (n = 71) has published more KAP manuscripts than IJPH (n = 47). Higher proportion of community-based KAP research was published in IJPH (80.8%) than IJCM (57.7%). Highest single research domain in PubMed indexed journals was those related to oral cavity (14.2%) conducted by dental professionals while rest (85.8%) could be largely ascribed to community physician/public health personnel, etc. The first research domain was followed by family planning/contraceptives (6.1%), tobacco control (5.6%), and AIDS-HIV (5.1%), for the year 2013–2014. Highest KAP-based research domain of articles published in IJCM was those related to family planning/contraceptives (10.0%) followed by AIDS-HIV (8.5%) while it was tobacco (16.6%) and AIDS-HIV (14.5%) in IJPH. Number of authors/manuscript was slightly higher in journals indexed in PubMed (4.7) than IJCM (3.8) and IJPH (3.7). The average page/manuscript was higher in PubMed (6.4) indexed journals while it was similar in both Indian journal (IJCM [3.6] and IJPH [3.8]). Approximate time incurred in decision announcement toward acceptance of KAP manuscript (2000–2014) by IJCM from the date of submission was 7 months (median) while for comparison purpose, it was 6 months (median) for a sample of articles published during 2015.Average citations per KAP document within 2 years of publication were 1.9 (IJCM) and 1.2 (IJPH), respectively, in Google scholar.
Conclusion: This bibliometric study, probably first of its kind in India, provides objective snap-shot of diverse published research in the country that may also aid scholar to explore new avenues of KAP especially non-communicable diseases in future. In-addition, postgraduate training could lay emphasis on the use of bibliometrics.

Keywords: Bibliometrics, citation, impact factor, journal, metrics, peer-review, public health, quantitative measurement, systemic review


How to cite this article:
Sachdeva S, Sachdev T R, Sachdeva R. Bibliometric evaluation of published Indian research on “Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices”. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res 2017;10:208-15

How to cite this URL:
Sachdeva S, Sachdev T R, Sachdeva R. Bibliometric evaluation of published Indian research on “Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices”. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res [serial online] 2017 [cited 2022 Aug 13];10:208-15. Available from: https://www.ijournalhs.org/text.asp?2017/10/2/208/207257


  Introduction Top


Bibliometrics are quantitative technique of measuring output, mapping pattern, emerging trend and obsolesce of publications, authorship, citation impact, and use of literature. It encompasses measurement of properties of documents and document-related processes.[1],[2] The word bibliometrics was coined by Pritchard in 1969,[3] and historically, it has evolved from statistical bibliography, to bibliometrics to scientometrics and informetrics to webometrics, and has become instrumental specifically for scholarly communication as well as library and information science.[4],[5] The Journal Citation Reports (JCR) was devised by Eugene Garfield, who in 1955 proposed the idea of creating an impact factor (IF) as a means to evaluate the importance of scientific journals. Few years later, it was concretized with the establishment of science citation index (SCI) by Institute for Scientific Information (ISI, today Web of Science by Thomson Reuters, (a profit company).[6] The JCR was created by the SCI in 1975 as an annual supplement to the IF and the citations received by a journal.

Since the advent of SCI, three types of bibliometric applications have arisen, namely, descriptive, relational, and evaluative. Descriptive bibliometrics places emphasis on the characteristic features of the document while relational bibliometrics seeks to illuminate relationships within research, such as cognitive structure of research fields, emergence of new research fronts, and national or international coauthorship patterns. Evaluative bibliometrics seeks to assess the impact of scholarly work and compares the relative contributions of two or more individual or groups.[7],[8] However, the quality judgment on a research product can only be given by peers and expert panel based on detailed insight into content and nature of research.

Metrics range from simple publication or citation counts to mathematical formulae which take into account both the output and impact of researchers work. The main bibliometric tools include Web of Science, Scopus, Scientific publication information retrieval system, MEDLINE (biomedical publications), CiteSeer (computer and information science publication), and Google scholar that provide automatic metrics for individual researcher but have their own advantages and limitations. Salient metrics include total number of papers, total number of citations, IF, h-index (method of measuring productivity and impact of academic work), Egghe's g-index (which gives more weight to highest cited papers), age-weighted citation rate (accounts for the age of the papers), measuring usage by readers, quantifying value of online media communication, exploring grammatical and syntactical structures of text, and measuring term frequency.[9],[10]

The bibliometrics analysis and citation management tools and technique can be applied on any subject topic, authors, articles, journals, institutions, universities and country for scientific ranking, productivity, impact, collaboration, trend analysis, performance, and even assist in decision-making toward allocation of research funding.[11],[12] However, quantitative performance metrics have their own set of inherent limitations.

Knowledge refers to understanding of a given topic by a group of people. Attitude refers to their feelings toward the subject as well as any preconceived idea that they may have toward it while practice refers to the ways in which they demonstrate their knowledge and attitude through their actions. Understanding these background factors enable in tailoring the health and communication program to address the needs of community, health staff, researchers, program managers, or other stakeholders more appropriately. With this insight, a bibliometric evaluation of published Indian knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAPs) research was undertaken through PubMed, Indian Journal of Community Medicine (IJCM), and Indian Journal of Public Health (IJPH).

Objectives

  1. Bibliometric evaluation of published Indian KAP research indexed in PubMed journals for the year 2013 and 2014
  2. Bibliometric evaluation of KAP research published in IJCM during the period 2000–2014
  3. Bibliometric evaluation of KAP research published in IJPH during the period 2000-2014.



  Methodology Top


Online search engine PubMed, IJCM, and IJPH websites were utilized and literature search was undertaken using medical subject heading (MeSH) keywords “knowledge,” “attitude,” “belief,” “practices,” “India.” Other health-related search keywords used were “KAP,” “KABP,” awareness, intention, willingness, perception, behavior, skill, and compliance. Title and abstract and/or full document were carefully screened for explicit assessment of relevant keywords.

Objective 1

Considering feasibility, time frame of search restriction in PubMed database was 2 years, i.e., January 2013 to December 2014, and a total of 924 titles in various combinations of keywords were culled out by PubMed search and 196 (21.2%) suitable research manuscript were shortlisted for this study.

Objective 2 and 3

Time frame of search restriction was 15 years, i.e., January 2000 to December 2014, so as to give focus on to these important and historically trusted journals in the country and also to enhance expected yield. During this period, IJCM published volume number 25 (year 2000) to 39 (year 2014) while IJPH published volume number 44 (year 2000) to 58 (year 2014) with release of four issues (quarterly) per year by both journals without fail. A total of 540 research titles/manuscripts were captured during IJCM search and 71 (13.1%) were included while 350 research titles/manuscript were captured during IJPH search and 47 (13.4%) were found suitable for inclusion in present analysis such as original articles, short communication, research brief, and letter to editor. Collectively, these are referred to as manuscript or documents in this study.

Inclusion criteria

  1. Research study carried out in country with one of the author(s) having an Indian address
  2. Articles with assessment of at least two of the characteristics of interest including MeSH keywords.


Exclusion criteria

  1. Isolated knowledge/awareness or perception or attitude/inclination/willingness or belief or practices/behavior/skill/compliance-based published research or prevalence-based research manuscripts along with assessment of anyone of the above entity.


Selected information captured were journal name, number of authors, place of research, study subjects, study setting, number of pages, references, research domain, and articles published per year, etc. Some of the documents though listed were not available from respective websites (archives) and were hand searched in libraries or procured through personal contacts. Citation analysis was undertaken for research manuscript published in IJCM and IJPH (objective 2 and 3 only) through Google scholar. All the citations per document were manually screened and unrelated items excluded. This information was derived in two formats: citations occurring within 2 years of publication of research and total citations ascribed to a particular manuscript till period of data collection. Based on this result, number of research manuscript was categorized according to citation and reflected according to research domain. Duplication and anomaly if any were sorted out by mutual consent.

Some of the selected above-mentioned information was also captured from randomly selected 16 Indian manuscript (eight original research articles and eight letter to editors) published in any of the four issues during 2015 in both IJCM and IJPH for comparison purpose. Information regarding time interval between manuscript submission by author and acceptance was available for IJCM only, and hence, displayed accordingly. During analysis, related topics were clubbed under similar research domain yet an attempt has been made to retain the uniqueness of research topic. Data collection was carried out during August–September 2015 and analyzed using research manuscript/document as a base unit by computing descriptive statistics.


  Results Top


PubMed search revealed 196 suitable manuscripts published in 39 indexed journals largely of Indian origin, authored by medical, dental, nursing, and other professionals. Some of the journals, especially e-journals, were “free,” while rest had definitive article processing charges and were available through open access system. Indicative list of journals that have published more than three Indian KAP articles during reference period were Asian Pac J Cancer Prev, J Clin Diagn Res, Indian J Lepr, Perspect Clin Res, Ann Med Health Sci Res, Int J Gynaecol Obstet, J Dent Educ, J Health Popul Nutr, Nurs J India, J Trop Pediatr, IJCM, IJPH, etc.

[Table 1] reflects geographical area-wise KAP research undertaken according to States/Union territory in India. PubMed revealed maximum research undertaken from the states of Karnataka (16.8%) followed by Delhi (9.6%), Maharashtra (9.1%), and more than two states (11.7%). There was poor reflection with no publication of KAP-based research from the states of Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, and Rajasthan, in both IJCM and IJPH. The geographical representation of country through published articles in IJCM was slightly more diverse than IJPH and more than one-fourth manuscripts in IJPH were published from West Bengal only. This could be attributed to publication policy of journals and/or choice of authors.
Table 1: Geographical area of published Indian KAP research manuscript

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[Table 2] depicts spectrum of research domain of KAP-based manuscripts published in journals indexed in PubMed. Highest research domain was those related to oral cavity (14.2%) conducted by dental professionals while rest (85.8%) research undertaken could be largely ascribed to community physician/public health/anthropologist/social scientist, nursing personnel, and small proportion by clinicians, pharmacologist, home science/nutrition expert. The first research domain was followed by family planning/contraceptives (6.6%), tobacco control (5.6%), and AIDS-HIV (5.1%), etc., for the year 2013–2014.
Table 2: Research domain of published Indian KAP articles, PUBMED

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[Table 3] depicts research domain of manuscript published in IJCM and IJPH. Highest KAP-based research domain of manuscript published in IJCM was those related to family planning/contraceptives (10.0%) followed by AIDS-HIV (8.5%) while it was tobacco control (16.6%) and AIDS-HIV (14.5%) in IJPH.
Table 3: Research domain of published Indian Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice manuscript in Indian Journal of Community Medicine and Indian Journal of Public Health

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[Table 4] depicts study setting and diverse study subjects upon whom KAP research was undertaken. Higher proportion of community-based KAP research was published in IJPH than IJCM (80.8% vs. 57.7%).
Table 4: Study settings and type of study subjects in published Indian Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice manuscripts

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[Table 5] depicts specific characteristics with regard to authors, pages, and references per document and time interval in acceptance decision announcement with regard to IJCM. Number of average authors/documents was comparatively higher in journals indexed in PubMed (4.7) than IJCM (3.8) and IJPH (3.7) probably indicating toward technical collaboration, team effort, and/or gifted/honorary authorship. The average page/manuscript was higher in PubMed (6.4) journal while it was similar in both Indian journals (IJCM [3.6] and IJPH [3.8]). Average number of references/manuscript was found to be similar in both the journals, 9.3 (IJCM) and 9.1 (IJPH). Number of references/article “allowed” is directly related to type of manuscript, strength/detail of write-up, word limit restriction, and/or number of pages per articles and should be visualized accordingly. These journals prescribe limits of six authors and 30 references in original articles, up to six authors and ten references in short/brief research article, and up to four authors and five references in letter to editor.
Table 5: Selected characteristics of published Indian KAP research manuscript

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Approximate time incurred in decision announcement toward acceptance of KAP manuscript (2000-14) by IJCM from the date of submission by authors was 7 months (median) while for comparison purpose, it was 6 months (median) for eight randomly selected “any” original Indian research articles published in any of the four IJCM issues during 2015, a sign of slightly better and efficient communication from all concerned parties (author ↔ editor ↔ reviewer) in recent year still there is scope of ample improvement with regard to early decision making and communication. Time to publication from acceptance is yet another parameter that needs urgent attention.

Average citations per KAP manuscript within 2 years of publication were 1.9 (IJCM) and 1.2 (IJPH) while the total citation range was also similar in both the journals as shown in [Table 6].
Table 6: Citation analysis of KAP research manuscript published in IJCM and IJPH

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  Discussion Top


The present bibliometric analysis, probably first of its kind, was undertaken to evaluate published Indian KAP research manuscripts. This study provides a snapshot of the concept under consideration while needless to say there are still larger number of other Indian KAP research published beyond the indexing site and journal limits but were outside the scope of present analysis. The other limitations include high heterogeneity of studies itself. In spite of author's best efforts, it is conceded that under-recording of KAP articles cannot be ruled out and the study results should be visualized from wider and positive perspective. Both the renowned, reputed, and trusted Indian journals have demonstrated certain strengths, weakness, and similarities with no intention of authors to rank these journals on current topic.

With maturing of Indian research environment, KAP-based research domain has come to a stage of “super” saturation and fatigue with some of the other established Indian journals having policy not to entertain KAP-based articles. On a pitfall, this has also led to proliferation of multiple poor quality privately owned journals with inclusion of all varieties of articles on payment basis for publications within days of submission. However, both these historically respected Indian journals have provided “space” to accommodate such type of research. Still, KAP research publication from Empowered Action Group states (Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand) was under-represented (15.9%) in both Indian journals considering their total population contribution (45%) and even on the parameter of availability of medical colleges (22.5%, 91/404) in these states as of 2014.

The present study provides objective analysis of Indian KAP-based research undertaken in the socio-political-demographic-economic and cultural scenario at one end; temporal distribution; scale of researcher's technical capacity, motivation, and limiting context at other end. The evaluation of Indian KAP research manuscripts could be rated from excellent to fair. With the intention to encourage and motivate authors, Indian journals publish articles in shorter format, though occasionally, even at the cost of quality. This could be one possibility while other could be to accommodate more suitable articles for publication in view of spurt in large submission. Delay in decision-making and communication results in frustration, despair, and even anger among submitting authors. Under current circumstances, both the journals should increase the frequency of annual publications from current (quarterly) to 6 (bi-monthly) or even 12 (monthly) issues per year to retain and expand user base. Nevertheless, there is a definitive risk of decline in readership of these journals in future as discussed elsewhere.[13] However, both the journal manuscript submission site at www.journalonweb.com reports acceptance rate of manuscript of less than 10% only, a proxy indicator of quality. The quality concerns were though similarly corroborated by an evaluation study on IJCM regarding adherence to strengthening the reporting of observational studies in epidemiology (STROBE) statement.[14] This study revealed that only 46% (37/80) articles addressed 12–15 items of the STROBE checklist out of the desired 22 items.

The research environment and culture in India have definitively evolved and the wheels of change have started rolling. A recent study of PubMed and IndMed database indicated that public health research output increased by 42% (n = 474 in 2000 to n = 817 in 2010) in last decade from India.[15] At one end, study rigor has improved; while at other end, peer-review quality with critical comments on study methodology has been galvanized for better. This process could be supplemented by bibliometric analysis since referee(s) review could also be marred by educational background, research interest, professional experience, human element of prejudice, bias, conflict of interest, inconsistencies, contradictions, and oversight; in addition, they could be time and cost intensive.[16] On literature review, average author per article was 2.79 in Slovenian Journal of Public Health, 4.04 in European Journal of Public Health, and 3.08 in Health and Population: Perspective and Issues' journal [17],[18] while in our study, it was 3.8 (IJCM) and 3.7 (IJPH).

In the present study analysis, average KAP-based research citation within 2 years of publication was similar in both Indian journals, 1.9 (IJCM) and 1.2 (IJPH), and seems to be corroborating well with SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) of IJCM (2014) with 1.02 cites/document and 0.81 cites/document for IJPH (2014) in the last 2 years. There were 27 (38.0%) and 17 (36.1%) KAP manuscripts published in IJCM and IJPH, respectively, which could not attract any citation within 2-year of their respective publication excluding manuscript published during 2013/14. However, these manuscripts with zero-2 years citation could also garner an average total citations of 10.3 (IJCM) and 6.8 (IJPH) till period of data collection. Only two KAP manuscripts published in IJCM (2.8%) and (4.2%) IJPH could not attract even one citation. These results could be due to popularity of specific articles, feasibility (ease) factor for undertaking research, access issues, time factor, citation history and age of article, reporting bias plus, we did not evaluated author's self-citation pattern. It is worth mentioning that citation of scientific paper normally starts 1 or 2 years after publication and reaches peak after about 10 years.[19]


  Conclusion Top


The present study may add impetus to journal and scholars in future to explore new avenues of KAP-based research (especially noncommunicable diseases, etc.) with added dimension of quality. Bibliometric analysis has been applied to many public health-related topics and journals in global and Indian context, but literature on present topic is not available for comparison purpose. Future research on important public health topics could be carried out to bring out a more comprehensive scenario in country which could aid in better policy decisions. In addition, training programs and postgraduate student curriculum could also lay emphasis on acquiring skills for effective use of bibliometrics as a component of research methodology.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
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    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6]


This article has been cited by
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Sandeep Sachdeva,Neha Taneja,Nidhi Dwivedi
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