A question widely debated by stakeholders around the world is whether current research evaluation systems are effective in identifying high-quality research and in supporting the advancement of science. Over recent years, concerns have risen about the limitations and potential biases of traditional evaluation metrics which often fail to capture the full range of research impact and quality. Consequently there has been an increased demand by stakeholders to reform current research evaluation systems. The debates around the reform of research evaluation focus on various aspects of evaluation including the need for different and inclusive evaluation criteria, the role of peer review and the use of open science. Some have pointed out the need to shift from focusing on journal metrics to a more comprehensive and qualitative assessment of research impact including collaboration, data sharing, community engagement…

The Global Young Academy (GYA), the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) and the International Science Council (ISC) joined forces to take stock of debates and developments in research evaluation worldwide, drawing on a scoping group of scientists and a series of regional consultations. The result is a working paper which analyses diverse research cultures and systems, and explores ways in which they might participate in and influence the reimagining of research evaluation/assessment for the 21st century, in an open and inclusive way. 'The Future of Research Evaluation' gives a review of the current state of research evaluation systems and discusses the most recent actions, response and initiatives taken by different stakeholders through several case examples from around the world. The goal of this discussion paper is to contribute to the ongoing debates and open questions on the future of research evaluation.

Central to this work was the premise that a concerted, researcher-led initiative would give the global research community a stronger voice in shaping the future of research evaluation and there are benefits to ‘evaluating with the evaluated’; thus, helping to chart a path to sustained, systemic change in evaluation cultures and practices. Supplementing desk research, a series of regional consultations with experts identified by the scoping group and partners, the discussion paper is intended to serve as a prospectus for exploratory conversations with multiple stakeholders, not least the global research community itself.

A summary of the issues identified, actions taken and remaining open questions based on the working paper can be found in the infographic which you can consult and download here.