Research

The main mission of the INSHS is to promote and disseminate the latest discoveries in the humanities and social sciences in open access. Its researchers produce an average of 6500 scientific publications per year. With its partners, the Institute develops and jointly runs transversal research networks throughout France.

Collaborative research which uses the digital sphere

Research at the INSHS relies on groups and networks which produce new digital resources. Many of these are available in open access.

The Institute's commitment to interdisciplinarity at the CNRS

The INSHS works in harmony with the approach involving exchanges and cross-disciplinary research defined by the CNRS's Mission for Transversal and Interdisciplinary Initiatives (MITI).

For example, the Institute works on joint research projects on the brain, cognition and behaviour with the Institute of Biological Sciences (INSB). The INSHS also runs projects with the Institute of Ecology and Environment (INEE) which study the relationships between human beings and their environments involving research units that are steered or jointly steered by the Institute. It also encourages its researchers to interact with the fields of computer and engineering sciences.

The CNRS MITI

 

Transversal research networks

The INSHS draws on its national expertise to jointly develop and lead cross-disciplinary networks throughout France with its university and institutional partners. Examples are Scientific Interest Groups (GIS) such as the Gender Institute, the Scientific Interest Groups working on African Studies or Asia, the Middle East and Muslim World along with a set of national (GDRs) or international research networks (IRNs).

In a similar vein, the INSHS has initiated multidisciplinary thematic networks (RTPs) which have worked on one-off expert missions studying food, war studies or the visual sciences and cultures.

 

Using the full potential of the digital sphere

Access to digital data is both an asset and a challenge for the INSHS because it promotes interdisciplinarity. Research Infrastructures (IRs) specializing in the humanities and social sciences make the best use of these massive data flows.

This is particularly the case of two Very Large-Scale Research Infrastructures (TGIRs) whose national roll-out is actively supported by the INSHS:

  • Progedo which aims to speed up the production and management of data in universities;
  • Huma-Num ("Humanités numériques", Digital Humanities) which offers collective data storage, processing interoperability and dissemination services.

They work in conjunction with the National Network of Houses of Human Sciences (RNMSH) which brings together and coordinates the research of 23 establishments in France. Today, the RNMSH has become the prime meeting place for partnerships and exchanges between universities, organizations and local authorities.

Scientific and technical information tools

CNRS researchers at INSHS produce an average of 6,500 publications each year, two-thirds of which consist of scientific journal articles and book chapters. They can access more than 8,000 journals and around fifty platforms and databases via the BIB-CNRS portal funded by the CNRS.

Scientific and technical information tools

The INSHS has created different tools to promote and disseminate scientific research results including publications and research data:

  • the RIBAC observatory which analyzes, characterizes and quantifies the scientific activities and production of all research actors;
  • VariSHS, a platform which promotes and disseminates the work of HSS researchers;
  • JournalBase, a bilingual open access platform on which users can run searches in humanities and social science journals and compare their referencing in different national and international sources and databases;
  • a support policy for French scientific journals in the humanities and social sciences which aims to help professionalize practices and promote better dissemination and greater visibility;
  • a charter on how to write affiliations in researchers' publications;
  • a network of STI correspondents in INSHS units which promotes the sharing and dissemination of practices, tools and experiences and acts as an intermediary between the Institute and its units;
  • a training policy for all INSHS stakeholders (Thematic schools, ANF)
  • support for around twenty professional networks linked to the CNRS.

 

The INSHS has been actively supporting open access to research publications and data for around ten years through the national HAL platform and the OpenEdition infrastructure.

These tools and projects were developed in coordination with the major players in the field of scientific and technical information at national - with Research Infrastructures and Very Large-Scale Research Infrastructures (IRs/TGIRs) - and European levels.

Analysis of scientific production

Like the other sciences, the humanities and social sciences need to possess numerical indicators to complement the peer review of scientific production but specific features also have to be taken into account in our fields. These include a greater diversity of publication media (journal articles but also a significant proportion of book chapters), maintaining multilingualism, the presence of small research communities working on highly specialized subjects (e.g. endangered languages) and the absence of reference databases for bibliometric studies.

In this context, the INSHS's Scientific Council and management have developed a database called RIBAC which makes it possible to identify and describe the activity of research players in the humanities and social sciences in a standardized manner.

Publications

Les chercheurs CNRS permanents en sciences humaines et sociales ont produit annuellement environ 6500 publications en 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018. Les articles de revue et les chapitres d'ouvrage représentent près de 2/3 de la production totale.

Les différents types de publications scientifiques
​Les différents types de publications scientifiques produites par les chercheurs en sciences humaines et sociales entre 2011 et 2018

 

La répartition des types de publication est différente selon les champs disciplinaires.

 

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Poids des principaux types de publications scientifiques des chercheurs et ingénieurs CNRS par section du comité national en 2015-2016 

 

En « économie et gestion », presque ¾ de la production correspondent à des articles de revue et des documents de travail. Plus des 2/3 des productions dans le domaine « Hommes et milieux : évolution, interactions » se font sous forme d'articles de revues et de rapports. Les linguistes (section 34), sociologues et politologues (sections 36 et 40) et géographes (section 39) produisent également davantage d'articles dans des revues que de chapitres d'ouvrage.

A contrario, il y a une prédominance en faveur des chapitres d'ouvrage dans la production des anthropologues (section 38), des chercheurs et ingénieurs des domaines des «Sciences philosophiques et philologiques, sciences de l'art» (section 35) et des historiens des mondes anciens (section 32) et modernes et contemporains (section 33).

 

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Répartition des articles de revue publiés par les chercheurs CNRS par section du comité national et par source (source RIBAC 2015)
Poids des principaux types de publications scientifiques des chercheurs CNRS par section d’évaluation en 2012
Poids des principaux types de publications scientifiques des chercheurs CNRS par section d’évaluation en 2012

 

 

Participation à des colloques des chercheurs CNRS de l’InSHS

L’activité « colloque » (communication et/ou organisation) est effectuée par 90,5 % des chercheurs et il n’y a pas de différences très importantes entre les disciplines (source Ribac 2012).

 

Activité « colloque » des chercheurs SHS
Activité « colloque » des chercheurs SHS par section du comité national

 

Presque 2/3 des colloques auxquels ont participé les chercheurs ont une audience internationale.

La presque totalité des présentations (95,7 %) se font sous la forme d’une communication orale. Les présentations sous forme de poster restent relativement peu nombreuses en SHS (source Ribac 2012).

 

Répartition des posters présentés par les chercheurs SHS
Répartition des posters présentés par les chercheurs SHS lors de manifestations scientifiques par section du comité national (source Ribac 2012)

 

La participation et le portage des projets et programmes de recherche financés sur contrats des chercheurs CNRS de l’InSHS

Environ 2/3 des chercheurs (64 %) ont déclaré être membres ou porteurs d’un programme de recherche. La répartition par section fait apparaitre une grande diversité de pratique d’une discipline à l’autre.

 

sections

Nbre de chercheurs membres ou responsables de programmes

Nbre de chercheurs total RIBAC 2012

%

31 - Hommes et milieux : évolution, interactions

80

97

82,5%

32 - Mondes anciens et médiévaux

160

225

71,1%

33 - Mondes modernes et contemporains

113

188

60,1%

34 - Sciences du langage

137

195

70,3%

35 - Sciences philosophiques et philologiques, sciences de l'art

113

202

55,9%

36 - Sociologie et sciences du droit

117

192

60,9%

37 - Economie et gestion

86

181

47,5%

38 - Anthropologie et étude comparative des sociétés contemporaines

91

166

54,8%

39 - Espaces, territoires et sociétés

109

135

80,7%

40 - Politique, pouvoir, organisation

135

196

68,9%

autres sections

13

21

61,9%

 Total

1154

1798

64,2%

 

Nombre de chercheurs CNRS de l’InSHS membres ou porteurs de projets en fonction de la typologie des projets

typologie des projets

nombre de responsables

nombre de membres

ANR

182

537

Divers national

81

335

Ministère

58

143

Europe

54

202

CNRS

51

112

Investissement d'avenir

46

131

Région

44

89

Divers international

27

333

Fondation

24

31

Université

16

44

Laboratoire

12

97

MSH

11

25

Mission archéologique

9

59

Privé

1

58

Total

616

2196