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Research Impact

Tracking and Enhancing the Impact of your Research

About Author Metrics

Author-level metrics try to measure the citation impact of the body of a scholar's work. The h-index is the best known and most widely used of these but other measures have been created to counter it.

h-index = the number of articles (h) of an author that have received at least (h) citations over time.  For example, an h-index of 8 would mean that an author has 8 articles that have received at least 8 citations each.

The h-index attempts to measure an author's impact over time.  The longer an author has been publishing, the higher the h-index is likely to be.  Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar (links at right) all display an h-index for authors.  Since each only uses the articles indexed within that source, the number will vary.  Comparisons should only be made within the same data source and take into account differences in disciplines and career stages.

Publish or Perish software (see box at right) allows scholars to determine their own h-index using Google Scholar data.

More information on the h-index is at https://libraryconnect.elsevier.com/articles/talking-your-researchers-about-h-index and https://arxiv.org/pdf/physics/0508025).

g-index = in a set of articles ranked in decreasing order of the number of citations received, the largest number such that the top g articles received (together) at least g2 citations.

The g-index was proposed as an alternative to the h-index that takes greater account of the author's highly cited works.  The g-index can be calculated using Publish or Perish software (see at right).

More information on the g-index is in Egghe, Leo.  "Theory and Practise of the g-index," Scientometrics 69, no. 1 (2006):131-152.

i10-index = the number of articles that have at least 10 citations.

This number only appears in Google Scholar author profiles.

Altmetrics for Authors

Alternative metrics are primarily for individual research outputs such as articles and datasets (see Article Metrics at left) but a couple of web services aggregate this data for authors.

Kudos is a web-based platform that helps researchers increase the visibility and impact of their published articles.  Kudos supplies researchers with an easy means of describing and sharing their publications through email and social media as well as metrics such as shares, click through, downloads, times cited, and other metrics.

Impactstory is a free, non-profit website (funded by the National Science Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation) that allows researchers to set up profiles that display the online impact of their work.  The services uses the ORCID identifier as the sole means of connecting your publications to your profile so it's necessary to register with ORCID.

Publons is a platform to track, verify, and showcase your peer review contributions to journals worldwide.  Not really a research metric but attempts to track your service in scholarly peer review.

Google Scholar Author Profiles

You can set up an author profile in Google Scholar to track your citations and display your h-index and i10-index.  You have the option to make your profile public or keep it private.

Publish or Perish Software

A free software program "designed to help individual academics to present their case for research impact to its best advantage." Publish or Perish uses Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic Search to retrieve citations, which can then be analyzed to present a variety of author metrics, including the h-index and g-index.

See also "How to use Harzing's 'Publish or Perish' software to assess citations - a step-by-step guide." 

Kudos Tutorial

Getting Publons Info into ORCID


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