TRF joint-hands with TCI and Scopus to improve quality of Thai academic journals on the World stage for Thailand 4.0
In April 2017, the Thailand Research Fund (TRF) and the Thai-Journal Citation Index Centre (TCI) jointly initiated a bold pilot project entitled: “TCI-TRF-Scopus Collaboration for improving the research productivity/citations of Thai research outputs in international databases”, involving 35 universities in Thailand. The project aims to improve the quality of 40 Thai journals to meet the required international standard for inclusion in Scopus database within 3 years (2017-2019). It is our great pleasure to announce that within the last 10 months since the start of this project, 10 Thai journals have met the required standard, and are accepted for Scopus indexing. These journals were accepted in record turnaround time too, instead of the 16 months long wait, the longest wait was 72 days, and the shortest wait was a mere 3 days, with 100% acceptance rate. The subject areas of the accepted 10 Thai journals is in line with the Thailand 4.0 focus, which are Environment, Health science, Science and Technology, and Social Sciences.“Thailand 4.0” policy aims to enhance Thailand’s competitive capabilities and development through science and technology innovation. An important mechanism for driving innovation, technology and creative economy is to upgrade and enhance R&D activities which include defining research questions, improving research methodology, and widen the dissemination and visibility of research publications in academic journals, published in Thailand. This can serve as a catalyst for encouraging greater application of local research findings, providing solutions to unique local industrial challenges, driving innovation in existing industries, and also serving as growth engines to accelerate Thailand’s future growth new five sections: Automation and Robotics, Aerospace, Bio-Energy and Bio-chemicals, Digital and Medical and Healthcare. However, the low awareness and visibility of Thai research findings are clear hindrance to this end. Data has shown, Thai scholarly journals were not well recognized by international peers. From the period of 2005-2017, there were only 26 Thai journals indexed in Scopus, a well-known international database, whose data is used by researchers, and for ranking universities globally. In addition, the outlook for more Thai journals to gain international visibility within a short time is dire at best. Statistically, the turnaround time for a Thai journal to be considered for indexing in the Scopus was about 16 months with a 23% acceptance rate. Meaning only about 1 in 5 Thai journals submitting for Scopus indexing will be accepted after a long 16 months selection and evaluation process by an independent content advisory board.
The immediate impact from the 10 Thai journals indexed in the Scopus is enormous with an estimated increase of 250 research publications per annum will be included in Scopus. These will immediately gain greater visibility and use by the wider community, both locally and internationally, spurring further innovation and research collaborations.
The prospect of having 40 journals successfully accepted and indexed in Scopus at the end of the project in the year 2019 is exciting. The impacts stated earlier will be far greater with around 1,000 articles/year from Thailand available internationally through Scopus. This will increase the total Thai publication volume by 10% and have positive impacts for Thai universities ranking globally. Furthermore, having more Thai journals indexed in Scopus will facilitate a process of identifying Thai experts in all subject fields as well as will effectively input for assisting the national planning of Thai capacity building policy.
TCI will be organizing the 12th TCI Symposium on Thai Scholarly Journals under the theme “Towards National Impacts and International Quality" on March 9th, 2018 at the Ambassador Hotel, Sukhumvit 11 Road, Bangkok. More than 600 Editors are expected to attend this Symposium to learn, to share their experiences on improving journal quality and meeting the required international standard and to present financial award allocated by TRF for the editorial team whose journals have been accepted for the Scopus under this collaboration project. This symposium also aims to create better awareness of criteria for journals inclusion in Scopus and other prominent international databases among University Executives.
List of the 10 accepted journals for Scopus indexing
- Environment: the three accepted journals are: 1) Tropical Natural History published by Chulalongkorn University 2) Environment and Natural Resources Journal published by Mahidol University and 3) GMSARN International Journal published by Greater Mekong Subregion Academic and Research Network,
- Health science: Pharmaceutical Sciences Asia published by Mahidol University,
- Science and Technology: The four accepted journals are: 1) Engineering and Applied Science Research published by Khon Kaen University 2) Suranaree Journal of Science and Technology published by Suranaree University of Technology 3) Journal of Metals, Materials and Minerals published by Chulalongkorn University and 4) Thailand Statistician published by Thai Statistical Association and
- Social Sciences: the two accepted journals are: 1) Journal of Population and Social Studies, published by Mahidol University and 2) ABAC Journal published by Assumption University.