DANS signs agreement ‘Reforming Research Assessment’

29 August 2022

DANS is the Dutch national expertise centre and repository for research data. We help researchers make their data available for reuse. Therefore, we have joined the European coalition that sets a shared direction for changes in assessment practices for research, researchers and research performing organisations. The overarching goal is to improve the quality and impact of research. 

In this role, DANS contributes to the implementation of two of the core commitments of this coalition: to recognise and promote the value of data as a first-class research output, as well as the role of data stewardship as a crucial element in the role of researchers.

The following changes are crucial to improve the quality and impact of research: 

  • Recognise the diversity of contributions to and careers in research in accordance with the needs and nature of research. Such as valuation of datasets (research assessments), roles for researchers (data stewards, software engineers, etc.) and tools for organisations.
  • Basing the assessment of research primarily on qualitative judgement, with a focus on peer-review, supported by the responsible use of quantitative indicators. 
  • Refrain from use in research assessment of measurement methods based on journals and publications, in particular of the Journal Impact Factor (JIF) and the h-index.
  • Avoiding the use of research organisation rankings in research evaluation.

The agreement has been drafted by Science Europe, the European University Association and Dr Karen Stroobants, with the support of the European Commission. It takes into account input from more than 350 research organisations from over 40 countries.

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Anja Smit

Directeur