Category Archives: Research Impact

Finding Impact Factors: Journal Citation Reports latest issue

Finding Impact Factors: Journal Citation Reports latest edition

Journal citation reports can be used to find out the impact factor for a journal. This is a useful way of finding quality journals where your article is more likely to be cited (although it only covers science and social sciences). Our brief guide will get you started and you can find some training videos on the Thomson web site.

What’s new?

The latest edition has just been released, covering journal analysis for2014. 272 new journals have been added. There are some new metrics and an open access filter allowing people to look specifically at  open access journals.

Once you have a list of the journals for your subject you can select the open access option to see which are the best performing open access journals for your area.

JCR open access

Want to know more?

Here are a few links to information to give you a flavour of the issues surrounding JCR and Impact Factors:

Need help

If you need help using Journal Citation Reports contact your subject librarian or

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Impact Challenge – 30 Days of ideas

Explosion in blue

The Impact Story blog has been running a great series of posts around the theme of “Impact Challenge”:

The series has been running through November – the first post stated their aims to “supercharge your research impact”:

  • upgrade your professional visibility by conquering social media,

  • boost your readership and citations by getting your work online,

  • stay atop your field’s latest developments with automated alerting,

  • lock in the key connections with colleagues that’ll boost your career, and

  • dazzle evaluators with comprehensive tracking and reporting on your own impacts.

Each post has information and ideas, followed by some homework suggestions. Now the series is over, you can look through and pick which ones may benefit you most.

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Whar are the most cited research papers of all time?

Nature News has compiled a list of the 100 most highly cited papers, using data from Science Citation Index. Of the 58 million items analysed, only 14,499 have more than 1,o0o citations – the 1985 discovery of the hole in the ozone layer has 1,871 citations. It takes over 12,119 citations to make the top 100. Watson & Crick’s paper on the structure of DNA misses the cut (5,207 citations) although the first observation of carbon nanotubes is ranked 36th in the list (22,899 citations). Only three papers have more than 100,000 citations.

The winners?

  1. 1951 Protein measurement with the folin phenol reagent: 305,148 citations
  2. 1970 Cleavage of structural proteins during the assembly of the head of bacteriophage T4: 213,005 citations
  3. 1976 A rapid and sensitive method for the quantitation of microgram quantities of protein utilizing the principle of protein-dye binding: 155,530 citations

The most highly cited paper describes an assay to determine the amount of protein in a solution; papers on experimental methods and software dominate the list. has more information, including full citations for the papers mentioned, a spreadsheet with the whole list, and interactive graphics.

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ORCID iDs – ensure you get credit for ALL of your work

ORCID, the Open Researcher and Contributor ID is a registry of unique identifiers for researchers and scholars that is open, non-proprietary, transparent, mobile, and community-based. ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier to distinguish you from all other researchers, automatically linking your professional activities.  It only takes 5 minutes to register and record your ORCID.

  • Funding organisations like the U.S. NIH, Wellcome Trust, and Portuguese FCT are requesting ORCID iDs during grant submission.
  • Publishers such as Nature and Elsevier are collecting ORCID iDs during manuscript submission, and your ORCID iD becomes a part of your publication’s metadata, making your work attributable to you and only you.
  • Universities and research institutes such as Harvard, Oxford, Michigan, University of Glasgow, University College London and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) encourage ORCID adoption; many are creating ORCID iDs for their faculty, postdocs and graduate students.
  • Professional associations like the Society for Neuroscience and Modern Language Association are incorporating ORCID iDs into membership renewal.

What you should do:

  1. Claim your free ORCID iD at . It only takes two minutes to register. How-to-video
  2. Record your ORCID iD (e.g. 0000-0002-6791-2886) in ABW under the ‘Research Submissions’ tab, this takes 3 minutes.  How-to-video
  3. Use your ORCID wherever you see it:  HR systems, applications for grants, publication submission, Impactstory, Figshare and more. Learn more at
  • Put your ORCID in your email signature so you don’t have to remember it or where you put it.
  • Link your ResearcherID and Scopus Author Identifier
  • Import your research outputs and add biographical information using automated import wizards

PG and PhD students, early new researchers and even UG students (if they are conducting work which may be published) are encouraged to register early in their careers to achieve the maximum benefit of this scheme.

Want to know more?  Here are 10 things you should know about ORCID by Impactstory.  If you have any questions about ORCID you can contact Rebecca , Information Services & Systems.

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Uprising: Less prestigious journals publishing greater share of high-impact papers

The journal Science reports on a study carried out by the Google Scholar team. According to this research:

In 1995, only 27% of citations pointed to articles published in nonelite journals. That portion grew to 47% by 2013. And the nonelite journals published an increasing share of the most highly cited papers within each field as well, growing from 14% to 24%.

John Bohanon: Uprising: Less prestigious journal publishing greater share of high-impact papers. (at

Anurag Acharya et al: Rise of the Rest: The Growing Impact of Non-Elite Journals. (at

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“Wild writing” or “Global Common Room”? 6 perspectives on academic blogging


Many academics have taken up blogging with enthusiasm as a way of sharing and promoting their research online or as a more reflective way of working. For others, the idea of blogging is an addition to a heavy workload and comes with anxiety about public scrutiny and plagiarism. There have been several interesting articles this year which focus on different reasons – and justifications – for blogging:

1. Mark Corrigan discusses the concept of a “thriving academic blogosphere” which opens up “a distinctive space between academic research and journalism” – read more on the LSE Impact blog.

2. Pat Thompson reports on a small study of academic bloggers which found that blogging (and commenting) functions as a “global common room”  – read more from the Guardian’s Higher Education Network.

3. The idea of blogging as a “vehicle for intellectual exploration” is discussed by Mark Corrigan and also echoed in a discussion of academic writing on the patter blog which quotes Gerald Raunig’s “Factories of Knowledge, Industries of Creativity” on the restrictions of academic writing:

“Wild and transversal writing is tamed and fed into the creativity-destroying apparatuses of disciplining institutions”

4. Sasley and Sucharov discuss blogging as a place for “moral activism” within the context of social engagement and a way of expressing one’s non-scholarly identity – read more on the LSE Impact Blog.

5. Is blogging what policy makers want to read i.e. more easily digestible content than full reports or academic articles? This study of US policy-makers explores this potentially impact-boosting benefit of blogging.

6. This article from the Guardian on the current emphasis on demonstrating impact from research focusses on blogging and highlighted our very own Katharina Hall’s successful “Mrs Peabody” blog in connection with REF 2014.


(If you are interested in starting a blog there’s a recent “top 10 tips for academic blogging” article from the Guardian or this article by Mary Hunt has excellent advice on style and approach. The LSE Impact of Social Sciences blog is also a great ongoing source of articles on all aspects of engagement and social media.)

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