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Traditional publication metrics tools aim to track citations to individual articles and impact factors for academic journals. Data is collected in a way that can be interpreted as a measure of the research performance and evaluation of both academic researchers and academic institutions. Journal impact factors have been used as a measure of journal importance. More recently established journals may not have accrued high impact factors.
Specific tools which gather data on citations that could be used for analysis and citation mapping include:
The h-index is a calculation of the number of publications by an author related to the number of times cited - for example, a h-index of 7 means the researcher has 7 publications that have been cited at least 7 times by other researchers, and so on. This can be used as a measure of productivity and impact, but may favour more established researchers. Systems will usually generate a h-index based on the corpus of papers known to the system, and so a h-index in Google Scholar may differ from a h-index in Web of Science.
There is an increasing variety of dissemination activity by researchers, such as social media (blogging, tweeting etc.) and deposit in institutional repositories. This activity is based more around sharing than the traditional citing of articles.
Altmetric scores which measure the attention research attracts via such online platforms as blogs, twitter and news sites can be commonly found on the records of research outputs, for instance in open access repositories, and CRIS systems [link to Library CRIS and SORA page].
The Dimensions database offers a free portal which contains a Dimensions badge on records which visualises four main citation metrics (total citation count, recent citation count, Field Citation Ratio or FCR, and Relative Citation Ratio or RCR).
There are article level metrics such as those developed by PLOS, download counts for outputs held in repositories, and platforms such as Kudos and Impact Story can help researchers share and explore the online impact of their research.
Funders, researchers and publishers have been seeking to create an environment where metrics about a researcher and their outputs are viewed in a more holistic and balanced way, rather than a focus on narrow view given by limited metrics, such as journal impact factor. The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (referred to as DORA) sets out a statement of intent and some guiding principles. St George’s, University of London is a signatory to DORA.
More information on how St George’s is implementing these principles can be found on our responsible research assessment webpage.
The University's External relations, communications and marketing team have developed Social Media Guidelines to get you started.