Paper #8

The influence of Documentation pioneer Paul Otlet on Spanish speaking and Portuguese speaking authors

Rodríguez-Bravo, Blanca,, Universidad de León (Spain/Espagne)

Simões, Maria,, Universidade de Coimbra (Portugal)

Martínez-Ávila, Daniel,, São Paulo State University (UNESP)


Paul Otlet (1868-1944) is known as the father of Documentation and the modern concept of document. In countries such as Spain and Portugal, both the terminology and the pioneer works dealing with the fundamentals of knowledge organization and documentation were greatly influenced by this francophone pioneer. In order to achieve empirical knowledge on the influence of Paul Otlet on Spanish and Portuguese speaking authors in Library Science and Documentation, we conducted a domain analysis of the citations of Otlet’s works. Our study was divided into two stages: first, we conducted a literature review on the influence of Paul Otlet in the development of Documentation in Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries; and second, we conducted an ego-centered citation analysis of Paul Otlet to determine the influence he exerted on Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking authors. We consulted the Google Scholar profile of Paul Otlet and retrieved and conducted our bibliometric analysis. For each Otlet title, we collected the total number of citations, the number of citations coming from Spanish speaking authors, the number of citations coming from Portuguese speaking authors, the name of the citing authors, and the year of the citations. The results show a great representation of Spanish speaking authors and especially Portuguese speaking authors among the works that cite Otlet in Google Scholar. We acknowledge that one of the limitations of our study was the impossibility for comparison with authors or inference of other communities/countries that do not speak Portuguese or Spanish. Finally, the results also gave an idea of the close characteristics and language preferences/limitations of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking communities.