Over the period 2006-2020, open access scientific publications by Greek institutions performed remarkably well in terms of number, quality and originality, receiving an ever-increasing number of citations at international level. In particular, a large increase in the number of open access publications as well as their respective citations recorded in 2019 and 2020. These data are presented in the new publication of the National Documentation Centre (EKT), which refers for the first time in detail to the bibliometric performance of Greek institutions in open access scientific publications of different types.
EKT's online publication ‘Open Access Scientific Publications by Greek Institutions 2006-2020: Bibliometric analysis of open access publications in international scientific journals - Web of Science’ is available at http://report09oa.metrics.ekt.gr (in Greek) that provides interactive navigation for extensive data, indicators and graphs. The publication and reporting data used to calculate the indicators were extracted from the international Web of Science database. The publication is part of the production of national statistics on publications in international journals of scientists working in Greek institutions.
In 2020, 9,803 open access scientific publications by Greek bodies were recorded in international scientific journals, thus achieving the highest annual performance for the entire period 2006-2020. The share (%) of open access publications of Greek institutions in the total publications of Greek institutions amounted to 52.82%. A further interesting finding is that in the last two years 2019 and 2020, high growth rates were recorded in the production of these publications: 14.2% (from 2018 to 2019) and 18.8% (from 2019 to 2020).
In addition, the open access publications of Greek institutions received 428,635 citations between 2016 and 2020, with a steady upward trend in later years and with their share (%) of the total citations of publications of Greek bodies amounting to 60.61%. At the same time, the impact rate of open access publications by Greek institutions (average number of citations per publication) continuously increased throughout the period 2006-2020.
Scientific articles published in international open journals are classified into the following open access categories: a) Gold, where the publication of a scientific article is made from the outset in an Open Access journal, the content of which is accessible to all readers without subscription (the cost of publication is covered by the authors, their institution or research funders), b) Green which concerns the archiving of papers by the scientists themselves in a repository, c) Hybrid, which concerns articles that are made available openly, but with an Article Processing Charge (APC), while in other articles access remains closed, d) Bronze , which concerns openly accessible works, but with copyright not clearly defined - they usually do not have an open reuse licence. On this basis, the publication further analyses the performance of scientists in Greece in open access publications and their subcategories.
The production and impact of the publications of the Greek institutions
In 2020, 9,803 scientific publications of Greek institutions were recorded in international open access scientific journals. The Gold Open Access category is the one with the largest concentration of scientific publications (5,708 publications), corresponding to 58.2% of the total number of open access publications. It is followed by the Green category (1,653 publications, 16.9%), the Bronze category (1,261 publications, 12.9 %) and the Hybrid category (1,181 publications, 12.0 %).
In terms of impact, originality, quality and visibility, the open access publications of Greek institutions continue to be positioned dynamically in the international environment.
The number of citations in open access publications by Greek bodies, which is the basis for the calculation of bibliometric indicators, continues to maintain the increasing trend of all previous years, and it reached 428,635 citations (from 312,558 citations in the period 2014-2018) in the five-year period 2016-2020. As far as the impact index is concerned, open access publications by Greek institutions received an average of 11.56 citations per publication (up from 7.52 in the five-year period 2006-2010).
Moreover, 1,126 open access publications of Greek institutions were ranked globally in top 1% of publications with high impact, 3,872 publications in top 5%, 6,417 in top 10%, 12,682 publications in 25% and 21,023 publications in top 50%. The distribution of open access publications of Greek institutions based on this particular criterion of high impact was 3.2%, 11.2%, 18.5%, 36.6% and 60.6%; thus, Greek performance exceeded the global average in all categories.
Which categories of institutions produce the majority of open access publications
The most prominent categories of Greek institutions, in terms of the number of open access publications, are Universities, Research Centres supervised by the General Secretariat for Research and Innovation (GSRI) and Public Hospitals.The participation of Universities in all publications by Greek bodies was 83.4% (30.923 publications), Research Centres of the GSRT 16.9% (6.253 publications) and Public Hospitals 13.2% (4.906 publications), while the other categories of institutions had percentages lower than 10% in the five-year period 2016-2020.
In which scientific fields is Greek open access scientific production concentrated?
For 2020, most open access publications of Greek institutions were attributed to the scientific field ‘Natural Sciences’ (46.2%), followed by ‘Medicine and Health Sciences’ (41.8%). ‘Engineering and Technology’ (21.3%), ‘Social Sciences’ (8.2%), ‘Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences’ (2.7%), and ‘Humanities and the Arts’ (1.1%).
Furthermore, in all scientific fields, the Gold category predominates in the percentage of open access publications, except for the scientific field ‘Social Sciences’, where the Green category has a higher percentage of publications (41.3%).
In the five-year period 2016-2020, the “field-normalised citation score” of Greek open access publications exceeded the global average of 1 in all scientific fields. The highest (relative impact factor: 2.01) was recorded in ‘Medicine & Health Sciences, followed by ‘Natural Sciences’ (1.52), ‘Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Sciences’ (1.45), ‘Engineering Sciences and Technology’ (1.36), ‘Social Sciences’(1.32) and ‘Humanities and Arts’ (1.22).
Who do Greek researchers collaborate with in open access publications?
During the fifteen-year period 2006-2020, the increase of open access publications was combined with an increase in collaboration of Greek scientists with colleagues from abroad. At the same time, the percentages of publications without collaborations or those with exclusively Greek collaborations, steadily decreased.
International collaborations have a positive effect on the impact of publications. The highest values for the impact factor in all scientific fields refer to publications with international collaborations, followed by those that were the result of Greek collaboration, and lastly, the publications produced without cooperation.
EKT's contribution to the analysis of Greek open access writing activity
Since 2010, EKT has been systematically recording the international research activity of scientists in Greek institutions (Universities, Research Centres, Other Public Bodies, Public Hospitals, Private Health Institutions) as this is expressed via scientific publications. This highlights a particular parameter of the Greek research system, including bibliometric indicators in the official statistical surveys of the country. In 2020, EKT published, for the first time, data on the bibliometric performance of Greek institutions based on scientific articles published in international open access journals included in the DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) and classified in the Gold Open Access category.
With the new online publication, EKT presents for the first time, the corresponding data for all open access scientific publications, regardless of type, i.e. Gold, Green, Hybrid and Bronze categories.
For the calculation of the indicators, the most valid methodological approaches in the field of bibliometric analysis were followed, while the specialised software applications developed by EKT for the processing of primary data and the calculation of bibliometric indicators (cleaning, thematic categorization, normalization, calculation, graphic representation) were used.
The publication ‘Open Access Scientific Publications by Greek Institutions 2006-2020: Bibliometric analysis of open access publications in international scientific journals - Web of Science’ was carried out within the framework of Subproject 5 'Production of RIS3 indicators for the years 2016-2023" of under the Action ‘Installation of Monitoring Mechanism for the implementation of the national RIS3 strategy - Collection and processing of indicators', implemented by the National Documentation Centre, under the Operational Programme ‘Competitiveness, Entrepreneurship & Innovation (NSRF 2014-2020)’, co-financed by Greece and the European Union-European Regional Development Fund.
- ‘Open Access Scientific Publications by Greek Institutions 2006-2020: Bibliometric analysis of open access publications in international scientific journals - Web of Science’ (in Greek)
- metricsEKT - Greek scientific publications in international journals
- metricsΕΚΤ - Indicators & Statistics for Research, Development, Innovation