Re: How to compare research impact of toll- vs. open-access research

From: Peter Suber <>
Date: Tue, 22 Jun 2004 12:02:04 +0100

    Reposted [by S.H.] from Open Access News

    New data showing that OA increases impact

    Stevan Harnad and Tim Brody, Comparing the Impact of Open Access
    (OA) vs. Non-OA Articles in the Same Journals, D-Lib Magazine, June
    2004. Excerpt:
    "The way to test the impact advantage of Open Access (OA) is not to
    compare the citation impact factors of OA and non-OA journals but
    to compare the citation counts of individual OA and non-OA articles
    appearing in the same (non-OA) journals. Such ongoing comparisons
    are revealing dramatic citation advantages for OA....The earlier
    Lawrence (2001) study on the impact-enhancing effects of OA in
    computer science needed to be replicated in other fields to check
    whether it was merely an artifact of the fact that computer science is
    conference-based rather than journal-based, and whether the advantage
    really reflected OA vs. non-OA rather than just online access
    vs. paper access. Fortunately, thanks to the ISI database licensed
    to the Observatoire des Sciences et des Technologies (OST) and a
    special contract generously provided by ISI to conduct the study,
    our research team at the Université du Québec à Montréal, Southampton
    University and Universität Oldenburg is in the process of testing
    the OA advantage across all disciplines in a 10-year ISI sample
    of 14 million articles. The physics analyses up to 2001 are already
    completed (Brody et al. 2004),
    and they reveal even larger effects than those reported by Lawrence,
    with OA/non-OA citation ratios of 2.5 - 5.8."

    (PS: This is an important article. It's the first major study
    since the famous Lawrence paper documenting the proposition that OA
    increases impact. It's also the first to go beyond Lawrence in scope
    and method in order to answer doubts raised about his thesis. By
    confirming that OA increases impact, it gives authors the best of
    reasons to provide OA to their own work.)

    Originally posted by Peter Suber at 9:43 PM, Monday June 21 2004
Received on Tue Jun 22 2004 - 12:02:04 BST

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