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Table 4 Selected indicators

From: Identifying potential indicators to measure the outcome of translational cancer research: a mixed methods approach

Indicator Definition Type of indicator Why it measures the impact of translational research
Number of clinical trial Number of clinical trials active in a cancer centre in a year Process Those indicators measures how research and care are integrated into a hospital
Percentage of patients included in a clinical trial Ratio of the number of patients included in a clinical trial to the total number of patients Process
Number of peer-reviewed publications Number of peer-reviewed publications authored by the institution Output Peer-reviewed publications play a fundamental role in the circulation and exploitation of knowledge
Number of citations Number of citations of the published articles of an institution received within a time span Output It measures how an article has influenced other scientists and its impact on the advancement of knowledge
Impact factor The ratio of the number of citations to the number of citable items of a journal Output This indicator measures the visibility of the production of a research institute
Institutional h-index Indicator that combines the number of articles produced by research units and their number of citations Output As this indicator combines metrics of quantity and visibility, it measures the possible influence of the entire production of a research institute
Number of public-private partnerships Number of partnerships between an academic research centre and the industry Process Public-private partnerships facilitate the translation of research finding into clinical applications
Mean number of citations per article A ratio of the number of citations received by an institution to their number of publications Output This indicator allows a comparison of the potential influence of an institution adjusted for their age
Number of highly cited publications Number of published articles with a citation count above a certain threshold Output This indicator potentially measures the number of articles that had a high impact in the research community
Number of publications in top-ranked journals Number of publications in journals with the highest impact factor in the discipline Output This indicator allows adjustment for differences in citation practices between disciplines
z-index An indicator combining the number of publications of an institution and the impact factor of those publications Output As this indicator combines metrics of quantity and visibility, it measures the possible influence of the entire production of a research institute
Number of publications co-authored with another organisation Number of publications co-authored by researchers affiliated to another research institution Output Cooperation benefits research by bringing new ideas and methods and helping to reach comprehensive expertise. In cancer research, collaboration between institutions is particularly crucial for research on rare cancers where it can be challenging to include enough patients. Those indicators measure the proportion of research performed during a collaboration
Number of publications with international collaboration Number of publications co-authored by researchers affiliated to a research institution in another country Output
Number of biomarkers identified Number of valid biomarkers identified by the research institution and published in a peer-review journal. Outcome Biomarkers play a fundamental role in developing personalised treatments and possibly improving patient outcomes
Generation of clinical guidelines Number of clinical guidelines authored by the institution Outcome Clinical guidelines facilitate the adoption of research findings into practices and aim to improve care quality Those indicators measure the possible influence of research on the improvement of clinical practices
Citation of research in clinical guidelines Number of articles cited in clinical guidelines Outcome
Citation of research in public health guidelines Number of articles cited in public health guidelines Outcome This indicator measures the possible influence of research findings on public policies (e.g. cancer screening)