Uses of the Journal Impact Factor in national journal rankings in China and Europe


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Kulczycki E., Huang Y., Zuccala A. A., Engels T. C. E., Ferrara A., Guns R., ...More

JOURNAL OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR INFORMATION SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, vol.73, no.12, pp.1741-1754, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 73 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/asi.24706
  • Journal Name: JOURNAL OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR INFORMATION SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, FRANCIS, Periodicals Index Online, ABI/INFORM, Aerospace Database, Applied Science & Technology Source, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, CINAHL, Communication Abstracts, Compendex, Computer & Applied Sciences, EBSCO Education Source, Education Abstracts, Information Science and Technology Abstracts, INSPEC, Library and Information Science Abstracts, Library Literature and Information Science, Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts (LISTA), Metadex, MLA - Modern Language Association Database, PAIS International, Public Affairs Index, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.1741-1754
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: No

Abstract

This paper investigates different uses of the Journal Impact Factor (JIF) in national journal rankings and discusses the merits of supplementing metrics with expert assessment. Our focus is national journal rankings used as evidence to support decisions about the distribution of institutional funding or career advancement. The seven countries under comparison are China, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Norway, Poland, and Turkey-and the region of Flanders in Belgium. With the exception of Italy, top-tier journals used in national rankings include those classified at the highest level, or according to tier, or points implemented. A total of 3,565 (75.8%) out of 4,701 unique top-tier journals were identified as having a JIF, with 55.7% belonging to the first Journal Impact Factor quartile. Journal rankings in China, Flanders, Poland, and Turkey classify journals with a JIF as being top-tier, but only when they are in the first quartile of the Average Journal Impact Factor Percentile. Journal rankings that result from expert assessment in Denmark, Finland, and Norway regularly classify journals as top-tier outside the first quartile, particularly in the social sciences and humanities. We conclude that experts, when tasked with metric-informed journal rankings, take into account quality dimensions that are not covered by JIFs.