Unified citation parameters for journals and individuals: Beyond the journal impact factor or the h-index alone | SpringerLink

Abstract:  We seek a unified and distinctive citation description of both journals and individuals. The journal impact factor has a restrictive definition that constrains its extension to individuals, whereas the h-index for individuals can easily be applied to journals. Going beyond any single parameter, the shape of each negative slope Hirsch curve of citations vs. rank index is distinctive. This shape can be described through five minimal parameters or ‘flags’: the h-index itself on the curve; the average citation of each segment on either side of h; and the two axis endpoints. We obtain the five flags from real data for two journals and 10 individual faculty, showing they provide unique citation fingerprints, enabling detailed comparative assessments. A computer code is provided to calculate five flags as the output, from citation data as the input. Since papers (citations) can form nodes (links) of a network, Hirsch curves and five flags could carry over to describe local degree sequences of general networks.


Open Access Research Outputs Receive More Diverse Citations | Zenodo

Huang, Chun-Kai (Karl), Neylon, Cameron, Montgomery, Lucy, Handcock, Rebecca N., & Wilson, Katie. (2022). Open Access Research Outputs Receive More Diverse Citations (Version 1). Zenodo. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7081037

The goal of open access is to allow more people to read and use research outputs. An observed association between highly cited research outputs and open access has been claimed as evidence of increased usage of the research, but this remains controversial. A higher citation count also does not necessarily imply wider usage such as citations by authors from more places. A knowledge gap exists in our understanding of who gets to use open access research outputs and where users are located. Here we address this gap by examining the association between an output’s open access status and the diversity of research outputs that cite it. By analysing large-scale bibliographic data from 2010 to 2019, we found a robust association between open access and increased diversity of citation sources by institutions, countries, subregions, regions, and fields of research, across outputs with both high and medium-low citation counts. Open access through disciplinary or institutional repositories showed a stronger effect than open access via publisher platforms. This study adds a new perspective to our understanding of how citations can be used to explore the effects of open access. It also provides new evidence at global scale of the benefits of open access as a mechanism for widening the use of research and increasing the diversity of the communities that benefit from it.


The relationship between open access publishing and referencing

“49.9% of papers published in 2019 and 2020 are currently available as OA and 51.3% of references from all papers published during those two years are to papers that are currently available as OA. These two percentages are more similar than the percentage of the papers published between 2010 and 2020 that are OA (i.e., 43.3%), suggesting that the OA percentage of the references of papers is not simply a reflection of the access status of the available papers. When we investigate by OA access type, we observe a similar pattern. The exception is gold OA, with a difference of 9.2 percentage points as opposed to 11.9 percentage points. The results suggest that references in recent papers are more open than one would expect, given OA publication practices in the last decade and that they are more open that the publications in which they appear. This demonstrates that the use of OA exceeds the production of it.”

Does the journal impact factor predict individual article citation rate in otolaryngology journals? – Salman Hussain, Abdullah Almansouri, Lojaine Allanqawi, Justine Philteos, Vincent Wu, Yvonne Chan, 2022

Abstract:  Objective

Citation skew is a phenomenon that refers to the unequal citation distribution of articles in a journal. The objective of this study was to establish whether citation skew exists in Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery (OHNS) journals and to elucidate whether journal impact factor (JIF) was an accurate indicator of citation rate of individual articles.


Journals in the field of OHNS were identified using Journal Citation Reports. After extraction of the number of citations in 2020 for all primary research articles and review articles published in 2018 and 2019, a detailed citation analysis was performed to determine citation distribution. The main outcome of this study was to establish whether citation skew exists within OHNS literature and whether JIF was an accurate prediction of individual article citation rate.


Thirty-one OHNS journals were identified. Citation skew was prevalent across OHNS literature with 65% of publications achieving citation rates below the JIF. Furthermore, 48% of publications gathered either zero or one citation. The mean and median citations for review articles, 3.66 and 2, respectively, were higher than the mean and median number of citations for primary research articles, 1 and 2.35, respectively (P < .001). A statistically significant correlation was found between citation rate and JIF (r = 0.394, P = 0.028).


The current results demonstrate a citation skew among OHNS journals, which is in keeping with findings from other surgical subspecialties. The majority of publications did not achieve citation rates equal to the JIF. Thus, the JIF should not be used to measure the quality of individual articles. Otolaryngologists should assess the quality of research through the use of other metrics, such as the evaluation of sound scientific methodology, and the relevance of the articles.

Reliability of citations of medRxiv preprints in articles published on COVID-19 in the world leading medical journals | PLOS ONE

Abstract:  Introduction

Preprints have been widely cited during the COVID-19 pandemics, even in the major medical journals. However, since subsequent publication of preprint is not always mentioned in preprint repositories, some may be inappropriately cited or quoted. Our objectives were to assess the reliability of preprint citations in articles on COVID-19, to the rate of publication of preprints cited in these articles and to compare, if relevant, the content of the preprints to their published version.


Articles published on COVID in 2020 in the BMJ, The Lancet, the JAMA and the NEJM were manually screened to identify all articles citing at least one preprint from medRxiv. We searched PubMed, Google and Google Scholar to assess if the preprint had been published in a peer-reviewed journal, and when. Published articles were screened to assess if the title, data or conclusions were identical to the preprint version.


Among the 205 research articles on COVID published by the four major medical journals in 2020, 60 (29.3%) cited at least one medRxiv preprint. Among the 182 preprints cited, 124 were published in a peer-reviewed journal, with 51 (41.1%) before the citing article was published online and 73 (58.9%) later. There were differences in the title, the data or the conclusion between the preprint cited and the published version for nearly half of them. MedRxiv did not mentioned the publication for 53 (42.7%) of preprints.


More than a quarter of preprints citations were inappropriate since preprints were in fact already published at the time of publication of the citing article, often with a different content. Authors and editors should check the accuracy of the citations and of the quotations of preprints before publishing manuscripts that cite them.

The Altmetric Attention Score Is Associated With Citation Rates and May Reflect Academic Impact in the Total Joint Arthroplasty Literature – Kyle N. Kunze, Amar S. Vadhera, Evan M. Polce, Carlos A. Higuera, Ahmed Siddiqi, Jorge Chahla, Nicolas S. Piuzzi, 2022

Abstract:  Background: Given the increasing interest and potential use of social media for the promotion of orthopedic literature, there is a need to better understand Altmetrics. Purposes: We sought to determine the relationship between the Altmetric Attention Score (AAS) and the number of citations for articles on total joint arthroplasty (TJA) published in orthopedics journals. We also sought to determine the predictors of greater social media attention for these articles. Methods: Articles on TJA published in Bone and Joint Journal (BJJ), Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (JBJS), Clinical Orthopedics and Related Research (CORR), Journal of Arthroplasty, Journal of Knee Surgery, Hip International, and Acta Orthopaedica in 2016 were extracted (n = 498). One-way analysis of variance with Bonferroni corrections was used to compare AAS and citations across journals. Multivariate regressions were used to determine predictors of social media attention and number of citations. Results: The mean AAS and number of citations were 7.5 (range: 0–289) and 16.7 (range: 0–156), respectively. Significant between-group effects were observed according to journal for AAS and number of citations. Publishing an article in JBJS was the strongest predictor of higher number of citations. Publishing an article in BJJ was the only independent predictor of higher AAS, while publishing an article in JBJS or CORR trended toward statistical significance. A higher AAS was a significant predictor of a higher number of citations. Number of citations and number of study references were positive predictors of greater social media attention on Twitter and Facebook. Conclusions: In articles on TJA published in 7 journals in 2016, a higher AAS was a associated with a higher number of citations. Various bibliometric characteristics were found to be significantly associated with greater social media attention; the most common influences were number of citations and number of references. Researchers in orthopedics can use this information when considering how to assess the impact of their work.


Altmetric and bibliometric analysis of influential articles in reproductive biology, 1980–2019 – Reproductive BioMedicine Online

Abstract:  Research question

What are the most influential articles in reproductive biology journals from 1980 to 2019 according to Altmetric Attention Score (AAS), number of citations and Relative Citation Ratio (RCR)?



Cross-sectional study of reproductive biology articles indexed in the National Institutes of Health Open Citation Collection from 1980 to 2019. Data were downloaded on 20 May 2021. The 100 articles with highest AAS, RCR and number of citations were analysed.



Twenty-one reproductive biology journals were identified, including 120,069 articles published from 1980 to 2019. In total 227 reproductive biology classics were identified due to some overlap between the three lists. Compared with the 100 articles with the highest AAS (after excluding articles featured on both lists), the 100 top-cited articles were older (2014 versus 2001, mean difference [95% confidence interval] 13.5 [11.5, 15.5]), less likely to be open access (64% versus 85%), more likely to be reviews (42% versus 12%) and less likely to be observational studies (9% versus 51%) and randomized clinical trials (0% versus 5%). These same trends were observed in analyses comparing the 100 articles with highest AAS to the 100 articles with highest RCR. The most common topic was assisted reproduction, but prominent topics included infertility for top AAS articles, reproductive technology in animals for top-cited articles, and polycystic ovary syndrome for top RCR articles.



Formerly, influential articles in reproductive biology journals were evaluated by absolute citation rates and subject to limitations of conventional bibliometric analysis. This is the first comprehensive study to use altmetrics and citation-based metrics to identify reproductive biology classics.

Massive covidization of research citations and the citation elite | PNAS

Abstract:  Massive scientific productivity accompanied the COVID-19 pandemic. We evaluated the citation impact of COVID-19 publications relative to all scientific work published in 2020 to 2021 and assessed the impact on scientist citation profiles. Using Scopus data until August 1, 2021, COVID-19 items accounted for 4% of papers published, 20% of citations received to papers published in 2020 to 2021, and >30% of citations received in 36 of the 174 disciplines of science (up to 79.3% in general and internal medicine). Across science, 98 of the 100 most-cited papers published in 2020 to 2021 were related to COVID-19; 110 scientists received ?10,000 citations for COVID-19 work, but none received ?10,000 citations for non–COVID-19 work published in 2020 to 2021. For many scientists, citations to their COVID-19 work already accounted for more than half of their total career citation count. Overall, these data show a strong covidization of research citations across science, with major impact on shaping the citation elite.


Journal prestige is still important in how scholars judge one another

“Aside from an individual’s personal interactions with another academic, the perceived quality of the journal where a researcher publishes is the most influential factor when forming an opinion on their academic standing, with almost half (49 percent) of 9,609 respondents saying it is important and 12 percent saying it is most important.

Asked about citation metrics, 24 percent say a scholar’s h-index and other similar measures are important, and 5 percent say they are the most crucial factor….

Last month more than 350 organizations from more than 40 countries signed a new compact, building on the 2015 Leiden Manifesto, which would see research evaluated mainly on qualitative measures and the journal-based metrics abandoned. That agreement came nearly 10 years after the signing of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment, which sought to phase out the use of journal-based metrics when making funding, appointment and promotion decisions, and which has now been signed by almost 20,000 individuals and 2,600 institutions worldwide….”