P 4.2

Scientific/academic impact of journals – citation based and other indicators

2018.09.27 — 16:00-17:30


This panel addresses the application of bibliometric and scientometric methods applied in the assessment of journals and the research they publish.

The measurement of impact of scientific journals through citations has its origin in the documentalists activities at the late nineteenth century to organize the publications of specific areas. The unfolding of these efforts soon undertook quantitative approaches aiming at understanding trends which allowed us to establish, for example, the nucleus of journals and authors in the various areas, making it an important input for science historians and sociologists.

Regarding the treatment of scientific information, the essays of the first half of the twentieth century were materialized into a system that would offer a new form of information retrieval – in the diachronic sense – allowing to identify the relation that literature establishes from the publishing of an article. This relationship, which expresses the repercussion of a new knowledge in the literature, did not take much time to attribute the idea of scientific impact, whose expression occurs through citations. The citation index then revolutionizes the way of accessing literature in the second half of that century, at the same time as it becomes a unique source for impact indicators, which from there would represent the world science in evaluative processes around of the world.

At the turn of the twenty first century, many factors – such as subscription costs, the underrepresentation of the scientific literature of non-English-speaking countries, as well as the different practices of scientific communication among areas of knowledge – have given rise to initiatives aimed at broader sources of information, while at the same time facilitating free access to scientific information. However, besides the access issue, the already established need for impact measurement could not be ignored in order to provide the consolidated processes of evaluation of scientific output with more adequate indicators.

In this sense, it is necessary that the new information sources, taking advantage of the new methodologies proposed by the community specialized in quantitative methods of science evaluation, may contribute with indicators that make the assessment of national (Brazilian) scientific output more adequate to the national scenario. In doing so, it is hoped that the group’s discussions will contribute not only to evidence the best that has been produced locally, but also to allow scientific journals edited nationally, particularly those of the SciELO Network, to have their impact recognized, allowing circulation of global and inclusive scientific knowledge.


Information sources for generating impact indicators; specificity of the culture of scientific communication in the different areas, especially the Human and Social Sciences; the limitations of the Impact Factor and mainstream journal-based indicators; methodologies for generating alternative impact indicators; national assessment systems and the use of bibliometric indicators; multilingualism and journals from non-English-speaking countries; the circulation of scientific knowledge and the types of journals.

How to contribute

You are invited to participate and cooperate with the SciELO 20 Years celebration with comments, testimonies, blog posts, articles, etc, related to the topic of this or other panels.



In development.


In development.


ARAUJO, R. Journals’ presence and impact on the social web: Towards the social media impact factor [online]. SciELO in Perspective, 2018 [viewed 26 July 2018]. Available from: https://blog.scielo.org/en/2018/07/26/journals-presence-and-impact-on-the-social-web-towards-the-social-media-impact-factor/

ARAÚJO, R. Web presence and social media metrics from articles shared on Twitter – Interview with Stefanie Haustein [online]. SciELO in Perspective, 2019 [viewed 11 June 2019]. Available from: https://blog.scielo.org/en/2019/06/11/web-presence-and-social-media-metrics-from-articles-shared-on-twitter/

BEIGEL, F. The power relations in world science. An anti-ranking to know the science produced in the periphery [online]. SciELO in Perspective, 2018 [viewed 05 September 2018]. Available from: https://blog.scielo.org/en/2018/09/05/the-power-relations-in-world-science-an-anti-ranking-to-know-the-science-produced-in-the-periphery

MUGNAINI, R. Output and impact of Brazilian research: confronting international and national contexts [online]. SciELO in Perspective, 2018 [viewed 27 August 2018]. Available from: https://blog.scielo.org/en/2018/08/27/output-and-impact-of-brazilian-research-confronting-international-and-national-contexts

REYES, F.C. Implicaciones de SciELO en la historia de la cobertura de la ciencia de ALyC [online]. SciELO en Perspectiva, 2018 [viewed 24 October 2018]. Available from: https://blog.scielo.org/es/2018/10/24/implicaciones-de-scielo-en-la-historia-de-la-cobertura-de-la-ciencia-de-alyc/


In development.


In development.

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