25 July 2012

Impact Factors 2011

At the end of last month, Thomson Reuters announced the release of the 2011 Impact Factors, available via the Journal Citation Reports (part of the Web of Knowledge).

The 2011 Impact Factor for a journal title is calculated as the average number of citations received in 2011 by articles published in that journal title during 2009 and 2010.

One interesting feature of the 2011 release was the exclusion of 51 journal titles due to "anomalous citation patterns" - it appears Thomson Reuters believed these journals to be engaging in practices designed to artificially inflate their Impact Factors.

For more information on Impact Factors, or guidance on finding out what the Impact Factor for a particular journal is, please contact your Information Specialist.

20 July 2012

A "most read" journal article from Aston author

A review paper in the Open Access Journal of Vision, authored by Dr Martin Juttner (LHS) and colleagues from the University of Munich, is among the most read articles of this online journal.

Strasburger, H., Rentschler, I., J├╝ttner, M (2011). Peripheral vision and pattern recognition: A review. Journal of Vision, 11 (5), 13.

Since its release in December the paper has been accessed more than 2000 times.

You can read the article online at the Journal of Vision.

19 July 2012

Article-level citation data: why and how?

At a conference I attended a few weeks ago, Anna Dickinson from the REF team at HEFCE gave an overview of the REF for a group of librarians supporting research.  One of the key points she made was that none of the sub-panels assessing submissions for REF will be using journal title-level citation data (e.g. Impact Factors or similar) to assess submitted research outputs, but that 11 of the 36 sub-panels will be provided with information about article-level citation data, including contextual data for that subject area.

So, a journal article submitted to one of the 11 sub-panels will be supplied to the members of that sub-panel with details of how many times that particular journal article has been cited in the literature, and the number of citations that a "top" journal article in that subject area might expect to receive.

If you want to find out what the article-level citation data for a specific journal article is, then you will need to use Scopus, the citation data provider for REF.  Search for the article of interest in Scopus, and you will see the "Cited by" information in a box on the right hand side of the page.

For more information about the use of citation data in the REF, including information about which panels are using this data and how the contextual citation data will be calculated (not yet available at the time of writing), see the REF 2014 web page.

4 July 2012

Open Access (OA) News

Public sector already saves £28.6 million through use of OA but greater access would provide even greater benefits.
Open Access to research materials has had high profile recently.  The UK Open Access Implementation Group (OAIG) has released two reports that say open access (OA) to published scholarly research offers significant benefits to the UK.
Their findings show that the UK public sector already saves £28.6 million by using OA and that both the public and voluntary sectors would see further direct and indirect benefits from increased access to UK higher education research publications. The UK public sector spends £135 million a year, made up of subscriptions and time spent trying to find articles, accessing the journal papers it needs to perform effectively. Every additional 5 percent of journal papers accessed via OA on the web would save the public purse £1.7 million, even if no subscription fees were to be saved, say the reports.
The UK's voluntary and charitable sectors also benefit from OA to academic research and survey respondents quote the most frequent barrier to accessing research as cost (80 percent.
These reports also notes that making more research free at the point of access, and easier to search across, could produce significant savings, and could also lead  to better decisions based on all the available evidence. This would offer benefits back to researchers, boosting the impact of their research by increasing its reach outside the academia.
The reports make a number of recommendations around increasing awareness of OA in the public and private sectors. These include promoting the value of the information produced as a result of public research funding and exploring ways of improving relationships between academic researchers and workers in other sectors who rely on their research to do their jobs well.
More information here or you can read the reports Benefits of Open Access to Scholarly Research to the Public Sector.
Inspire - eNewsletter May 2012