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Could scientists use scores to predict longer term citation counts?

Mike Thelwall and Tamara Nevill

Journal of Informetrics, 2018, vol. 12, issue 1, 237-248

Abstract: Altmetrics from are widely used by publishers and researchers to give earlier evidence of attention than citation counts. This article assesses whether scores are reliable early indicators of likely future impact and whether they may also reflect non-scholarly impacts. A preliminary factor analysis suggests that the main altmetric indicator of scholarly impact is Mendeley reader counts, with weaker news, informational and social network discussion/promotion dimensions in some fields. Based on a regression analysis of data from November 2015 and Scopus citation counts from October 2017 for articles in 30 narrow fields, only Mendeley reader counts are consistent predictors of future citation impact. Most other scores can help predict future impact in some fields. Overall, the results confirm that early scores can predict later citation counts, although less well than journal impact factors, and the optimal strategy is to consider both scores and journal impact factors. scores can also reflect dimensions of non-scholarly impact in some fields.

Keywords: Altmetrics;; Mendeley; Scientometrics; Journal impact factors (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:infome:v:12:y:2018:i:1:p:237-248