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An update on the “empirical turn” in bioethics: analysis of empirical research in nine bioethics journals

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Medical Ethics, February 2018
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (85th percentile)

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29 Mendeley
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Title
An update on the “empirical turn” in bioethics: analysis of empirical research in nine bioethics journals
Published in
BMC Medical Ethics, February 2018
DOI 10.1186/s12910-018-0246-9
Pubmed ID
Authors

Tenzin Wangmo, Sirin Hauri, Eloise Gennet, Evelyn Anane-Sarpong, Veerle Provoost, Bernice S. Elger

Abstract

A review of literature published a decade ago noted a significant increase in empirical papers across nine bioethics journals. This study provides an update on the presence of empirical papers in the same nine journals. It first evaluates whether the empirical trend is continuing as noted in the previous study, and second, how it is changing, that is, what are the characteristics of the empirical works published in these nine bioethics journals. A review of the same nine journals (Bioethics; Journal of Medical Ethics; Journal of Clinical Ethics; Nursing Ethics; Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics; Hastings Center Report; Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics; Christian Bioethics; and Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal) was conducted for a 12-year period from 2004 to 2015. Data obtained was analysed descriptively and using a non-parametric Chi-square test. Of the total number of original papers (N = 5567) published in the nine bioethics journals, 18.1% (n = 1007) collected and analysed empirical data. Journal of Medical Ethics and Nursing Ethics led the empirical publications, accounting for 89.4% of all empirical papers. The former published significantly more quantitative papers than qualitative, whereas the latter published more qualitative papers. Our analysis reveals no significant difference (χ2 = 2.857; p = 0.091) between the proportion of empirical papers published in 2004-2009 and 2010-2015. However, the increasing empirical trend has continued in these journals with the proportion of empirical papers increasing from 14.9% in 2004 to 17.8% in 2015. This study presents the current state of affairs regarding empirical research published nine bioethics journals. In the quarter century of data that is available about the nine bioethics journals studied in two reviews, the proportion of empirical publications continues to increase, signifying a trend towards empirical research in bioethics. The growing volume is mainly attributable to two journals: Journal of Medical Ethics and Nursing Ethics. This descriptive study further maps the still developing field of empirical research in bioethics. Additional studies are needed to completely map the nature and extent of empirical research in bioethics to inform the ongoing debate about the value of empirical research for bioethics.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 8 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 29 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 29 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 4 14%
Student > Master 4 14%
Student > Bachelor 3 10%
Student > Doctoral Student 2 7%
Researcher 2 7%
Other 6 21%
Unknown 8 28%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 7 24%
Nursing and Health Professions 4 14%
Social Sciences 3 10%
Philosophy 2 7%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 2 7%
Other 3 10%
Unknown 8 28%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 12. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 26 February 2019.
All research outputs
#1,471,400
of 14,395,965 outputs
Outputs from BMC Medical Ethics
#169
of 633 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#53,249
of 358,719 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Medical Ethics
#1
of 1 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 14,395,965 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 89th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 633 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 11.1. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 72% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 358,719 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 85% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them