The IOM Migration Health Division (MHD) Research and Epidemiology Unit is currently updating the Bibliometric Analysis of COVID-19 in the Context of Migration Healthfull paper and repository, harnessing relevant research publications on COVID-19 in relation to migrants, migration, and human mobility. See Migration Health Evidence Portal for COVID-19, for reference.
To efficiently do this, we are seeking the help of interested MHADRI members, specifically in screening and tagging relevant publications in which MHADRI members can participate as reviewers. The MHD Research and Epidemiology Unit will then organize and deliver a quick training for the reviewers to guide them on the step-by-step process. Rest assured too that we will acknowledge your work in the paper.
Those interested may contact the MHD Research and Epidemiology Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for submission: 5th Feb 2021.
What do we know about the landscape of migration health research? Who is doing the research? What are they researching on? Which migrant categories are included? What are the health related themes? How can we better understand the research and evidence gap in migration and health? What collaborations are taking place, and can we map who funds this research?
These are some of the questions that a group of scholars, policy makers and International Organization for Migration (IOM) staff investigated at a workshop on bibliometrics analysis of migration health research held in November 2019 at IOM’s Global Administrative Centre in Manila, Philippines.
The workshop was the first of this kind, harnessing research collaboration not only within IOM but also with the government agencies, clinicians and research institutions, mainly from South and Southeast Asia.
“Bibliometric analysis is a useful research method as it lets you look at the patterns of research activities such as publications. In any global health field, it is extremely helpful to know where the work is being done, who is doing it, where the collaborations are happening, and what topics are being explored,” said Dr. Margaret Sampson, an international expert on bibliometric analysis who facilitated the workshop.
Jointly organized by IOM, together with the Migration Health and Development Research Initiative (MHADRI) and the Migration & Health South Asia Network, the workshop served as a platform to develop research capacity, with particular focus on researchers in the Global South, in undertaking bibliometric analysis to identify the gaps in research output on migration health.
BackgroundIn 2018, IOM and MHADRI undertook the first-ever bibliometric analysis of global migration health research in peer-reviewed literature focusing on international migrants. The study revealed major gaps in research productivity especially in the Global South as most literature is from high-income migrant destination countries, despite the significant migration flows within the countries in Asia, Latin America, Africa, Middle East, and Eastern Europe. For example, according to the study, only 6.2 per cent of the total published research output on the health of migrants focused on migrant workers, despite 60 per cent of international migrants represented within this category. Supporting the networking, capacity development of researchers, especially those from developing nations, to undertake migration health-related research was highlighted. The importance of undertaking more in-depth mapping of migration health research output for both international and internal migrants in low to middle income countries were also highlighted in the research by IOM and MHADRI.
The Manila Consensus Group forged at the workshop aimed at further refining and testing the search strategies for bibliometrics research and provide analytical rigour to apply these methods for migration health research.
The group committed to developing methodological guidelines in undertaking bibliometric analysis as well as to work on providing a standardized approach to undertaking bibliometric analysis relevant to research on international and internal migration dynamics.
The group committed to publishing these outputs in open source platforms supported by IOM so as to make this publicly available so that researchers, policy makers and UN agencies can utilize to undertake tailored analytics.
“It boils down to how you frame your question, the right key words, and the right way to search – maybe we are making it too wide or too tight – maybe we are not getting the right information. So, the tools and strategies presented were really helpful,” said one of the workshop participants, Dr. Roomi Aziz, Technical Lead Health Data and Communication, Pathways to Impact in Pakistan
The Manila Consensus group will delve into questions focusing on the research productivity relating to migration and health in Philippines, internal migration and health related research in South Asia as well as the research productivity relating to health assessments of migrants and refugees at pre- and post-migration phases and health outcomes in areas ranging from Infectious disease, communicable disease and occupational health.
“The workshop provided an excellent opportunity to build research capacity among Global South scholars, to enable them to go back and take deep dives to understand the research productivity in the field of migration health in their local areas and use that as evidence to move the field forward,” said Associate Professor Charles Hui, Chairperson of MHADRI network and Chief of Infectious Diseases at Children’s Hospital Eastern Ontario, Ottawa.
In addition to harnessing the synergies created through this initiative, IOM seeks to work with member states, partner organizations and research networks to replicate such mapping and collaboration in other regions.
Assessing the current status of research activity and identifying gaps in research output in international and internal migration and health is an important step in mapping the evidence-base in migration health. Through bibliometric analysis, indicators of published literature in global migration health pertaining to migrants across different categories. Further sub-set analysis along geographic clusters and by health themes such as mental health, malaria, tuberculosis and migration may also be investigated. While there are limitations, bibliometrics allows analysis of size, growth patterns, distributions and mapping of global research productivity.
Patterns in publications, authorship analysis, geographical distribution, international research collaboration, important themes discussed, and highly cited articles in the health of migrants can be examined. Bibliometrics is also an important first step in undertaking systematic review.
In 2018, MHADRI network members and IOM undertook a Bibliometric analysis of global migration health research. The data showed gaps in the research productivity ‘heat map’ at global level. Two migration health research workshops held in Nepal and South Africa in 2019 facilitated by a coalition of organizations (IOM, ACMS, QMUL-Migration&Health South Asia network and MHADRI) highlighted the importance of undertaking national, sub-regional and regional ‘deep dives’ into mapping migration health research output for both international and internal migrants.
A pilot bibliometric training workshop will be held in Manila, Philippines in November 2019, with the aim of engaging scholars from the South Asian region to build their skills and capacities to undertake such bibliometric analysis.
Developing a conceptual framework to guide Bibliometric analysis at
national, sub-regional and regional levels – for South & South East
Framework to guide Bibliometric analysis on Health Assessments for
Migrants and Refugees
To provide an overview and technical instruction on performing an in-depth bibliometric analysis of migration and health-related publications using Scopus.
To discuss the use of appropriate visualization tools and software in data representation and reporting.
To provide guidance on structuring publications resulting from the bibliometric analysis.
To define a framework combining bibliometric review with more conceptual-theoretical and critical review to synthesize thematic and empirical gaps in knowledge.