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F_W 3400 Water Quality & Natural Resource Management

Journal Citation Reports

Go to InCites Journal Citation Reports and find journal rankings for one of the following categories:



Water Resources


Impact factors

 What are impact factors?

The impact factor for journal X = the number of citations in a given year to all articles published in journal X for the previous two years, divided by the number of articles in that journal for those previous two years

What should concern you about cited reference searching and impact factors?

  • Citation rates vary widely from field to field and shouldn't be taken at face value, but considered relative to the field of research
  • Citation rate may be based on a few prolific authors citing each other, including self citations
  • Citation searching works better for journal articles than books
  • Coverage of your particular field in the citation database may be weak
  • Cross-disciplinary research may produce fewer citations
  • Distribution of the citations over time might be more indicative of their importance than an initial high citation count shortly after publication
  • Impact factors are a measure the journal as a whole, not individual papers or researchers
  • Impact factors may play a too important role in hiring and tenure decisions without considering other measures
  • Some journals also cite articles in editorials, reviews, news and other non-research articles to increase the number of cites
  • The research may too recent and not widely known, like emerging fields
  • The quality of the journal producing the citation
  • There is a growing tendency of some researchers to go after topics likely to get into high-impact journals, which jeopardizes creativity, can skew the course or even slow the pace of science
  • There is no guarantee that every paper which ought to be cited will be cited. An un-cited author may be ahead of his peers. Mendel and his genetics work went unappreciated for years