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Concept: Journal Citation Reports


Objective To examine how poor reporting and inadequate methods for key methodological features in randomised controlled trials (RCTs) have changed over the past three decades.Design Mapping of trials included in Cochrane reviews.Data sources Data from RCTs included in all Cochrane reviews published between March 2011 and September 2014 reporting an evaluation of the Cochrane risk of bias items: sequence generation, allocation concealment, blinding, and incomplete outcome data.Data extraction For each RCT, we extracted consensus on risk of bias made by the review authors and identified the primary reference to extract publication year and journal. We matched journal names with Journal Citation Reports to get 2014 impact factors.Main outcomes measures We considered the proportions of trials rated by review authors at unclear and high risk of bias as surrogates for poor reporting and inadequate methods, respectively.Results We analysed 20 920 RCTs (from 2001 reviews) published in 3136 journals. The proportion of trials with unclear risk of bias was 48.7% for sequence generation and 57.5% for allocation concealment; the proportion of those with high risk of bias was 4.0% and 7.2%, respectively. For blinding and incomplete outcome data, 30.6% and 24.7% of trials were at unclear risk and 33.1% and 17.1% were at high risk, respectively. Higher journal impact factor was associated with a lower proportion of trials at unclear or high risk of bias. The proportion of trials at unclear risk of bias decreased over time, especially for sequence generation, which fell from 69.1% in 1986-1990 to 31.2% in 2011-14 and for allocation concealment (70.1% to 44.6%). After excluding trials at unclear risk of bias, use of inadequate methods also decreased over time: from 14.8% to 4.6% for sequence generation and from 32.7% to 11.6% for allocation concealment.Conclusions Poor reporting and inadequate methods have decreased over time, especially for sequence generation and allocation concealment. But more could be done, especially in lower impact factor journals.

Concepts: Scientific method, Randomized controlled trial, Academic publishing, Nature, Impact factor, Bibliometrics, Institute for Scientific Information, Journal Citation Reports


Research productivity and impact are often considered in professional evaluations of academics, and performance metrics based on publications and citations increasingly are used in such evaluations. To promote evidence-based and informed use of these metrics, we collected publication and citation data for 437 tenure-track faculty members at 33 research-extensive universities in the United States belonging to the National Association of University Fisheries and Wildlife Programs. For each faculty member, we computed 8 commonly used performance metrics based on numbers of publications and citations, and recorded covariates including academic age (time since Ph.D.), sex, percentage of appointment devoted to research, and the sub-disciplinary research focus. Standardized deviance residuals from regression models were used to compare faculty after accounting for variation in performance due to these covariates. We also aggregated residuals to enable comparison across universities. Finally, we tested for temporal trends in citation practices to assess whether the “law of constant ratios”, used to enable comparison of performance metrics between disciplines that differ in citation and publication practices, applied to fisheries and wildlife sub-disciplines when mapped to Web of Science Journal Citation Report categories. Our regression models reduced deviance by ¼ to ½. Standardized residuals for each faculty member, when combined across metrics as a simple average or weighted via factor analysis, produced similar results in terms of performance based on percentile rankings. Significant variation was observed in scholarly performance across universities, after accounting for the influence of covariates. In contrast to findings for other disciplines, normalized citation ratios for fisheries and wildlife sub-disciplines increased across years. Increases were comparable for all sub-disciplines except ecology. We discuss the advantages and limitations of our methods, illustrate their use when applied to new data, and suggest future improvements. Our benchmarking approach may provide a useful tool to augment detailed, qualitative assessment of performance.

Concepts: Regression analysis, Academic publishing, University, Academia, Dean, Faculty, College, Journal Citation Reports


We analysed the authorship policies of a random sample of 600 journals from the Journal Citation Reports database. 62.5% of the journals we sampled had an authorship policy. Having an authorship policy was positively associated with impact factor. Journals from the biomedical sciences and social sciences/humanities were more likely to have an authorship policy than journals from the physical sciences, engineering or mathematical sciences. Among journals with a policy, the most frequent type of policy was guidance on criteria for authorship (99.7%); followed by guidance on acknowledgments (97.3%); requiring that authors make substantial contributions to the research (94.7%); requiring that authors be accountable for the research as a whole (84.8%); guidance on changes in authorship (77.9%); requiring that authors give final approval to the manuscript (77.6%); requiring that authors draft or critically revise the manuscript (71.7%); providing guidance on corporate authorship (58.9%); prohibiting gift, guest or ghost authorship (31.7%); requiring authors to describe their contributions (5.3%); limiting the number of authors for some types of articles (4.0%) and requiring authors to be accountable for their part in the research (1.1%). None of the policies addressed equal contribution statements. Journals that do not have authorship policies should consider adopting or developing ones.

Concepts: Academic publishing, Science, Impact factor, Scientific journal, Journal Citation Reports


The purpose of our study was to identify and characterize the 100 most-cited articles in neuroimaging. Based on the database of Journal Citation Reports, we selected 669 journals that were considered as potential outlets for neuroimaging articles. The Web of Science search tools were used to identify the 100 most-cited articles relevant to neuroimaging within the selected journals. The following information was recorded for each article: publication year, journal, category and impact factor of journal, number of citations, number of annual citations, authorship, department, institution, country, article type, imaging technique used, and topic. The 100 most-cited articles in neuroimaging were published between 1980 and 2012, with 1995-2004 producing 69 articles. Citations ranged from 4,384-673 and annual citations ranged from 313.1-24.9. The majority of articles were published in radiology/imaging journals (n = 75), originated in the United States (n = 58), were original articles (n = 63), used MRI as imaging modality (n = 85), and dealt with imaging technique (n = 45). The Oxford Centre for Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Brain at John Radcliffe Hospital (n = 10) was the leading institutions and Karl J. Friston (n = 11) was the most prolific author. Our study presents a detailed list and an analysis of the 100 most-cited articles in the field of neuroimaging, which provides an insight into historical developments and allows for recognition of the important advances in this field.

Concepts: Brain, Medical imaging, Magnetic resonance imaging, Impact factor, Bibliometrics, Journal Citation Reports, Radcliffe Infirmary, John Radcliffe Hospital


Bibliometrics are a set of methods, which can be used to analyze academic literature quantitatively and its changes over time. The objectives of this study were 1) to evaluate trends related to academic performance of dental journals from 2003 to 2012 using bibliometric indices, and 2) monitor the changes of the five dental journals with the highest and lowest impact factor (IF) published in 2003. Data for the subject category “Dentistry, Oral Surgery & Medicine” was retrieved from the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) published from 2003 to 2012. Linear regressions analysis was used to determine statistical trends over the years with each bibliometric indicator as the dependent variable and the JCR year as the predictor variable. Statistically significant rise in the total number of dental journals, the number of all articles with the steepest rise observed for research articles, the number of citations and the aggregate IF was observed from 2003 to 2012. The analysis of the five top and five bottom-tire dental journals revealed a rise in IF however, with a wide variation in relation to the magnitude of this rise. Although the IF of the top five journals remained relatively constant, the percentile ranks of the four lowest ranking journals in 2003 increased significantly with the sharpest rise being noted for the British Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery. This study revealed significant growth of dental literature in absolute terms, as well as upward trends for most of the citation-based bibliometric indices from 2003 to 2012.

Concepts: Scientific method, Statistics, Academic publishing, Impact factor, Dentistry, Oral and maxillofacial surgery, Bibliometrics, Journal Citation Reports


The American Journal of Occupational Therapy (AJOT) has had another successful year, with increases in its journal impact factor and its ranking among rehabilitation journals indexed by Journal Citation Reports. The number of submissions has increased, with manuscripts received from 28 countries. Readership has also increased. AJOT remains the top-ranked occupational therapy journal in the world. In addition to its usual focus on publishing research broadly related to occupational therapy, AJOT created a Centennial section in each issue to celebrate the Centennial of the American Occupational Therapy Association. Centennial section topics were determined on the basis of their relevance to occupational therapy history and to future or emerging or increasing practice areas in occupational therapy. In her presidential address at the American Occupational Therapy Association’s 2017 Annual Conference & Centennial Celebration, Amy Lamb honored occupational therapy’s past and embraced its future. Occupational therapy practitioners have the power to serve as change agents, demonstrating their value during everyday opportunities as they design the future of occupational therapy.

Concepts: Future, Academic publishing, Impact factor, Past, Occupational therapy, Bibliometrics, Institute for Scientific Information, Journal Citation Reports


Background The Journal Citation Reports (JCR) Pharmacology and Pharmacy subject category is heterogeneous. The inclusion of journals with basic and clinical scopes, which have different citation patterns, compromises comparability of impact factors among journals within the category. Objective To subdivide the Pharmacology and Pharmacy category into basic pharmacology, clinical pharmacology, and pharmacy based on the analyses of Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) as a proxy of journals' scopes. Setting JCR. Method All articles, and respective MeSH, published in 2013, 2014, and 2015 in all journals included in the 2014 JCR Pharmacology and Pharmacy category were retrieved from PubMed. Several models using a combination of the 14 MeSH categories and specific MeSH tree branches were tested using hierarchical cluster analysis. Main outcome measure Distribution of journals across the subcategories of the JCR Pharmacology and Pharmacy subject category. Results A total of 107,847 articles from 214 journals were included. Nine different models combining the MeSH categories M (Persons) and N (Health Care) with specific MeSH tree branches (selected ad-hoc) and Pharmacy-specific MeSH (identified in previous research) consistently grouped 142 journals (66.4%) in homogeneous groups reflecting their basic and clinical pharmacology, and pharmacy scopes. Ultimately, journals were clustered into: 150 in basic pharmacology, 43 in clinical pharmacology, 16 in basic pharmacology and clinical pharmacology, and 5 in pharmacy. Conclusion The reformulation of the Pharmacology and Pharmacy category into three categories was demonstrated by the consistent results obtained from testing nine different clustering models using the MeSH terms assigned to their articles.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Medicine, Cluster analysis, Impact factor, Category theory, Medical Subject Headings, PubMed, Journal Citation Reports


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the frequency with which free papers presented at the 2008 and 2010 European Society of Sports Traumatology Knee Surgery and Arthroscopy (ESSKA) congress were ultimately published in peer-reviewed journals. Moreover, this study evaluated whether any correlations exist between the level of evidence of the free papers and their frequency of publication or the impact factor of the journals in which they are published.

Concepts: Academic publishing, Science, Nature, Scientific journal, Chess, Journal Citation Reports, Academic conference


To quantify, using bibliometric indicators, the scientific productivity of researchers, organizations, and countries, publishing articles on implantology in dental journals indexed in Journal Citation Reports between 2009 and 2013.

Concepts: Scientific method, Academic publishing, Dental implant, Journal, Journal Citation Reports


By means of scientometric indicators, this study investigated the characteristics of scientific production and research collaboration involving zebrafish (Danio rerio) in Brazilian Science indexed by the Web of Science (WoS). Citation data were collected from the WoS and data regarding Impact Factor (IF) were gathered from journals in the Journal Citation Reports. Collaboration was evaluated according to coauthorship data, creating representative nets with VOSviewer. Zebrafish has attained remarkable importance as an experimental model organism in recent years and an increase in scientific production with zebrafish is observed in Brazil and around the world. The citation impact of the worldwide scientific production is superior when compared to the Brazilian scientific production. However, the citation impact of the Brazilian scientific production is consistently increasing. Brazil does not follow the international trends with regard to publication research fields. The state of Rio Grande do Sul has the greatest number of articles and the institution with the largest number of publications is Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul. Journals' average IF is higher in Brazilian publications with international coauthorship, and around 90% of articles are collaborative. The Brazilian institutions presenting the greatest number of collaborations are Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Fundação Universidade Federal de Rio Grande, and Universidade de São Paulo. These data indicate that Brazilian research using zebrafish presents a growth in terms of number of publications, citation impact, and collaborative work.

Concepts: Scientific method, Model organism, Academic publishing, Impact factor, Collaboration, Bibliometrics, Journal Citation Reports, Rio Grande do Sul