Identifying the determinants of individual scientific performance: A perspective focused on AMO theory

Felix Guerrero Alba, Fernando Martin Alcazar, Gonzalo Sanchez Gardey


Purpose: The aim of this study is to empirically analyse how motivation and the opportunity to investigate enhance the direct relation between the researcher’s human capital and individual scientific performance.

Design/methodology/approach: Following recent investigations of strategic human capital and the abilities-motivation-opportunity (AMO) theory, we propose a double quantitative-qualitative methodology to identify the determinants of individual scientific performance.

Findings: Applying regression analysis to a sample of 471 Spanish academic researchers, we confirm the moderating role of a researcher’s motivation and opportunities.

Originality/value: Drawing on the empirical evidence obtained, this work discusses the relevant determinants of scientific productivity, providing practical recommendations for research management and policy making.


Academic human capital, AMO theory, DEA, individual scientific performance

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Licencia de Creative Commons 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Intangible Capital, 2004-2022

Online ISSN: 1697-9818; Print ISSN: 2014-3214; DL: B-33375-2004

Publisher: OmniaScience