Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Impact-factor naïveté

Physics and math are not alone in their use of impact factor to rate journals, of course.

Readers who Google "impact factor" in Web sites and blogs will, I think, come to agree with my unscientific but firm belief that intentional manipulation is not widely understood to be a threat. Douglas N. Arnold's article, which I wrote about, is an exception. Worries about other, more innocent failures of the metric are far more common.

The concerns expressed in the editorial Impact factor and its role in academic promotion: A statement adopted by the International Respiratory Journal Editors Roundtable, by Jerome A. Dempsey, Journal of Applied Physiology 107; 1005, 2009 are typical. There's plenty of fretting about the metric effects of review articles, on niche specialties with few researchers, of frequency of citation versus quality of work, etc. But nothing about gaming the system. Perhaps El Naschie is a blessing in disguise: A warning to academia to look up from its computer monitor long enough to notice the elephant in the livingroom.
Translate English to Arabic

محمد النشائي El Naschie Watch محمد النشائي El Naschie News محمد النشائي
محمد النشائي All El Naschie All The Time محمد النشائي

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