In an attempt to tackle abuses of self-citation and ‘citation farms’ (relatively small clusters of authors massively citing each other’s papers), a team at Stanford University, led by Professor John P.A. Ioannides, recently produced a list of the world’s most-cited scientists based on more accurate standardized citation metrics.
It is divided into two categories — career-long citation impact and single year citation impact (2019) — which follow an extensive analysis of research data from the mid-1990s through to 2019, covering millions of scientists in 22 fields and 176 subfields of study. In a total of 159,683 scientists, 385 are from Portugal.
IT researchers have been featured across four main fields: Information & Communication Technologies, Engineering, Physics & Astronomy and Enabling & Strategic Technologies.
Also worth noting is that out of the 37 most-cited Portuguese researchers within Information & Communication Technologies, 11 are from IT.
Ranked for career-long citation impact are: Mário Figueiredo, José Bioucas-Dias, Fernando Pereira, Mário Silveirinha, Joel Rodrigues, Ana Fred, Hugo Proença, José Pedro, Nuno Carvalho, Sérgio Cruz, João Sobrinho, Jonathan Rodriguez, Stanislav Maslovski, Adolfo Cartaxo, Carlos Fernandes, José Brandão Faria, Octavian Postolache, Francisco Alegria and Paulo André.
For single year citation impact, IT names include Nuno Garcia, Shahid Mumtaz and Filipe Clemente.
The global rankings, published in PloS Biology, build on the number of citations, H-Index, co-authorship and a composite indicator — all of which were measured using data from the SCOPUS database.
It comes at a time when funding agencies, journals and others are focusing more on potential issues that arise from excessive self-citation.
“Use of citation metrics has become widespread but is fraught with difficulties. Some challenges relate to what citations and related metrics fundamentally mean and how they can be interpreted or misinterpreted as a measure of impact or excellence”, the authors state.
Labelled by Nature as “the largest collection of self-citation metrics ever published”, the article reflects broader concerns about an over-reliance on citation metrics for making decisions about hiring, promotions and research funding.
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