Early citation advantage?

Sally Morris (ALPSP) sally.morris at ALPSP.ORG
Thu Jun 29 02:58:40 EDT 2006

Apologies if I've missed this, but are there any studies looking at whether
authors who self-archive some but not all of their papers are typically more
highly cited in their non-self-archived papers than are those who don't?
That would help us to clarify whether certain authors self-select (though
not, of course, whether authors select certain articles for self-archiving)


Sally Morris, Chief Executive
Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers
South House, The Street, Clapham, Worthing, West Sussex BN13 3UU, UK
Tel:  +44 (0)1903 871 686
Fax:  +44 (0)1903 871 457
Email:  sally.morris at alpsp.org
----- Original Message -----
From: "Stevan Harnad" <harnad at ECS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Sent: Tuesday, June 27, 2006 6:06 PM
Subject: Re: [SIGMETRICS] Early citation advantage?

> Adminstrative info for SIGMETRICS (for example unsubscribe):
> http://web.utk.edu/~gwhitney/sigmetrics.html
> Readers may want to see the commentaries on the Davis & Fromerth (2007)
> article at:
> http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/Hypermail/Amsci/subject.html#5221
> In summary, no study has yet succeeded in eliminating the possibility of
> some Self-selection Bias contributing to the Open Access (OA) citation
> advantage, but no study has shown that all or most of the OA citation
> advantage is dues to Self-selection Bias either. (Self-selection Bias,
> SB, or Quality Bias, QB, would occur if authors selectively tended to
> self-archive the articles that they felt were of higher quality. Eysenbach
> (2006) asked authors whether this was the case, and they said no, but
> of course that doesn't quite settle the matter either!
> http://biology.plosjournals.org/perlserv?request=get-document&doi=10.1371/journal.pbio.0040157
> ).
> In particular, Davis & Fromerth certainly have not settled the
> matter. They found no Early Access advantage in the subset of journals
> in mathematics that they analysed, and this could well be, for a
> long-turn-around-time discipline like mathematics, compared to shorter
> turnaround fields like physics and biology (though subfields differences
> might over-ride this in some cases).
> Davis & Fromerth also showed that in his sample of math journals,
> articles deposited in Arxiv (hence OA) had 35% more citations than non-OA
> articles, and that the proportion of OA to non-OA articles was bigger for
> more highly cited articles. That certainly doesn't demonstrate that
> the OA advantage is due to self-selection! It is just as likely that the
> advantage of being OA is greater for higher quality articles! (Conversely,
> for low quality articles, making them more accessible won't help!) (We
> found the same correlation in our studies of a million and a half articles
> across 12 years and 10 different disciplines):
>    Hajjem, C., Harnad, S. and Gingras, Y. (2005) Ten-Year
>    Cross-Disciplinary Comparison of the Growth of Open Access and How
>    it Increases Research Citation Impact. IEEE Data Engineering Bulletin
>    28(4) pp. 39-47.
>    http://eprints.ecs.soton.ac.uk/11688/
> But because Arxiv is a central archive with a 15-year history of joint
> usage by the
> field, the OA advantage is confounded with what Michael Kurtz has called
> the "Arxiv
> advantage" (AA): Many users will prefer to consult the Arxiv version
> rather than the
> publisher's version, even when they have subscription access to the
> publisher's
> version, because they prefer a one-stop-shop. The Arxiv advantage probably
> explains
> the lower number of downloads at the publisher's site for papers
> self-archived in
> Arxiv.
>    Harnad, S. (2005) OA Impact Advantage = EA + (AA) + (QB) + QA + (CA) +
> UA.
>    http://eprints.ecs.soton.ac.uk/12085/
> Stevan Harnad
> On Tue, 27 Jun 2006, Phil Davis wrote:
>> In our study of math articles deposited in the arXiv, we could not detect
>> an Early View advantage.  Mathematics articles have very long citation
>> half-lives and don't get cited nearly as often as biomedical articles, so
>> the effect may be there, but just not detectable in our dataset.  There
>> were stronger explanatory variables to explain the citation advantage.
>> See:
>> Does the arXiv lead to higher citations and reduced publisher downloads
>> for
>> mathematics articles?
>> Philip M. Davis and Michael J. Fromerth
>> Scientometrics (2007 forthcoming) http://arxiv.org/pdf/cs.DL/0603056
>> An analysis of 2,765 articles published in four math journals from 1997
>> to
>> 2005 indicated that articles deposited in the arXiv received 35% more
>> citations on average than non-deposited articles (an advantage of about
>> 1.1
>> citations per article), and that this difference was most pronounced for
>> highly-cited articles. The most plausible explanation is not Open Access
>> or
>> Early View, but Self-Selection, which has led to higher quality articles
>> being deposited in the arXiv. Yet in spite of their citation advantage,
>> arXiv-deposited articles received 23% fewer downloads from the
>> publisher's
>> website (about 10 fewer downloads per article) in all but the most recent
>> two years after publication. The data suggest that arXiv and the
>> publisher's website may be fulfilling distinct functional needs of the
>> reader.
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