Research Productivity and Impact of Saudi Academic Ophthalmologists: Trends in H-index, Sex, Subspecialty, and Faculty Appointments
Ismail Abuallut1, *
Identifiers and Pagination:Year: 2023
E-location ID: e187436412301230
Publisher ID: e187436412301230
Article History:Received Date: 5/9/2022
Revision Received Date: 5/1/2023
Acceptance Date: 11/1/2023
Electronic publication date: 09/05/2023
Collection year: 2023
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
This study aimed to assess the scientific output of academic ophthalmologists in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in terms of the H-index, sex, subspecialty, and faculty appointments.
This cross-sectional study used data extracted from publicly available sources. Saudi academic ophthalmologists and their academic rankings were identified from their respective university websites. The H-indices were collected from the Scopus, Web of Science, and Google Scholar databases. Descriptive, univariate, and multivariate analyses were performed to explore the association of the H-index with sex, academic ranking, and subspecialty.
A total of 93 Saudi academic ophthalmologists were included in the study. Men comprised 77% of the academic positions and tended to have higher academic positions than women. The mean H-indices for men and women were 5.04±5.21 and 4.19±4.31, respectively (p=0.54). The mean H-indices of lecturers, assistant professors, associate professors, and professors were 1±0.1, 3.06±3, 7.7±68, and 10±10.25, respectively. The H-index had a positive correlation with a faculty appointment with an unadjusted beta coefficient for professors of 8.264 (95% CI, 5.967 to 10.560) (p<0.001). Ocular pathology and glaucoma were the highest in research productivity, with mean H-indices of 11±9.8 and 7.8±7.5, respectively. Compared with the most common specialties of the cornea and anterior segment, the H-index had a significantly positive correlation with glaucoma and ocular pathology subspecialties at 3.442 and 8.500 unadjusted beta coefficients, respectively (p=0.015 and p=0.004, respectively). The top three subspecialties with female underrepresentation were general ophthalmology, surgical retina, and glaucoma.
This study provides insights into the research productivity of Saudi academic ophthalmologists. A high academic ranking was associated with high research productivity, as measured by the H-index. Gender variation was noted in the academic and subspecialty representations.