Lariviere, V; Gingras, Y. 2010. The Impact Factor's Matthew Effect: A Natural Experiment in Bibliometrics. JASIST 61 (2): 424-427.
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Mon Feb 15 14:25:31 EST 2010
Lariviere, V; Gingras, Y. 2010. The Impact Factor's Matthew Effect: A Natural
Experiment in Bibliometrics. JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR
INFORMATION SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY 61 (2): 424-427.
Author Full Name(s): Lariviere, Vincent; Gingras, Yves
Document Type: Article
KeyWords Plus: SCIENCE SYSTEM; SCALING RULES; CITATION
Abstract: Since the publication of Robert K. Merton's theory of cumulative
advantage in science (Matthew Effect), several empirical studies have tried to
measure its presence at the level of papers, individual researchers, institutions,
or countries. However, these studies seldom control for the intrinsic "quality" of
papers or of researchers-"better" (however defined) papers or researchers
could receive higher citation rates because they are indeed of better quality.
Using an original method for controlling the intrinsic value of papers-identical
duplicate papers published in different journals with different impact factors-
this paper shows that the journal in which papers are published have a strong
influence on their citation rates, as duplicate papers published in high-impact
journals obtain, on average, twice as many citations as their identical
counterparts published in journals with lower impact factors. The intrinsic value
of a paper is thus not the only reason a given paper gets cited or not, there is
a specific Matthew Effect attached to journals and this gives to papers
published there an added value over and above their intrinsic quality.
Addresses: [Lariviere, Vincent; Gingras, Yves] Univ Quebec Montreal, OST,
CIRST, Montreal, PQ H3C 3P8, Canada
Reprint Address: Lariviere, V, Univ Quebec Montreal, OST, CIRST, CP
8888,Succursale Ctr Ville, Montreal, PQ H3C 3P8, Canada.
E-mail Address: lariviere.vincent at uqam.ca; gingras.yves at uqam.ca
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