Chapter 9: Tips for Deans and other academic administrators
Publish or Perish was initially designed to help academics to present their case for research impact to its best advantage. Inevitably, however, it also became popular amongst Deans, academic administrators and chairs of tenure/promotion committees. I am not very comfortable with the mechanistic type of evaluation of that might be promoted by an exclusive focus on citation analysis.
However, I do realize that many tenure or promotion committees use this kind of information. In this section, I therefore provide advice on how to use Publish or Perish for a more systematic evaluation of citation impact. I include four topics: accepting Google Scholar as an alternative data source, the myths about self-citation, the inappropriateness of citation analysis at early career stages, and the differences in citation impact across disciplines.
- 9.1 Treat Google Scholar as a serious alternative data source
- 9.1.1 Not everything published on the Internet counts in Google Scholar
- 9.1.2 Non-ISI listed publication can be high-quality publications
- 9.1.3 Google scholars flaws don't impact citation analysis much
- 9.2 Excluding self-citations is normally not worthwhile
- 9.2.1 Why self-citations are not usually problematic
- 9.2.2 How to identify self-citations in Google Scholar?
- 9.2.3 How to identify self-citations in ISI Web of science?
- 9.3 Don't expect significant citations for early career academics
- 9.3.1 Using ISI to track down citation records in the past
- 9.3.2 Baselines for ISI citations in particular fields
- 9.4 Citation impact can differ substantially by discipline
- 9.5 Conclusion: what sensible administrators should do
- 9.6 References