Publication Forum (in Finnish often referred to as JUFO) is a rating and classification system to support the quality assessment of research output. To account for the different publication cultures characteristic of various disciplines, the classification includes academic journals, book series, conferences as well as book publishers. The four-level classification rates the major foreign and domestic publication channels of all disciplines as follows:
1 = basic level
2 = leading level
3 = highest level
0 = publication channels that don’t meet the criteria for level 1.
The evaluation is performed by 23 discipline-specific Expert Panels composed of some 300 distinguished Finnish or Finland-based scholars.
Publication Forum operates under the auspices of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies (TSV). The Steering Group appointed from amongst the scientific community and major organisations in science administration is responsible for the development of the Publication Forum operations.
Purpose of the Publication Forum
The Publication Forum classification was created to respond to the need to evaluate the research output of universities and other institutes not only quantitatively but also qualitatively. The classification is suitable for macro-level discussions on the publication production of research organisations, research fields or the country as a whole. The comprehensiveness of the Publication Forum is one of its advantages: the classification is able to cater for the specific characteristics of the publication practice in various academic fields, as opposed, for example to citation analyses based on data in international databases. Moreover, the scientific community can contribute to and influence the future development of the classification.
Since 2015, the classification has been used as a quality indicator of the research output produced by universities within the university funding model established by the Ministry of Education and Culture. Among the appropriation criteria, scientific and other publications account for 14% of the basic funding to universities.
The classification provides information on the impact of academic publication channels and the appreciation they enjoy within the scientific community. The objective is to encourage Finnish scholars and researchers to publish their research outcomes in high-level domestic and foreign forums. Since the level awarded to a publication channel mirrors the average level of its published articles, it is rational to use the classification to evaluate large publication volumes only. Therefore, the classification is not suited for the evaluation of the merits of an individual researcher, nor can it replace an assessment made by experts in a specific field in, for example, recruitment situations.