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Research Impact

Explains bibliometrics, identifies sources of impact data and describes how to ascertain and maximise your own research impact and use the data for promotions, grant applications etc.

Analysing Publications Data

Bibliometrics is a term encompassing the range of statistical analysis related to publications and their authors. This data is used to develop research impact “profiles” for specific individuals, papers, journals and disciplines, institutions and countries.

Each measure has advantages and disadvantages, related to discipline characteristics, inclusiveness of the measures, and the accessibility of the data; and no single measure should be used in isolation.

Times Cited

A number of databases provide quality citation data about individual papers. They show when and where an original paper has been cited, and by whom, providing an opportunity to learn about other researchers within or related to a discipline as well as illustrating "impact" of that paper.

These are the main, multi-disciplinary sources of citation data:

What else can be counted?

Open Access Repository (ePrints)

The Open Access Repository (ePrints) counts the "downloads" for  individual items it contains and shows the diversity of countries where these have occurred.  With content in ePrints searchable via Google, these counts could be used as an indicator of researchers' impacts on peers and the broader community.

World Cat

If you're an author of a book, you may be interested in its distribution across the world's libraries.


Altmetrics is a term describing a new and growing field.  This refers to citations of research outputs in social media e.g. Tweets, mentions in blogs, etc.  Altmetrics give us another way to see article, department and university level productivity and impact.  Used with caution, this information may support claims related to the breadth of impact of your research.

Altmetrics can measure online engagement by collecting data on:

  • Activity in social networking platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn,
  • Articles in news publications and communications
  • Twitter activity
  • Scholarly and popular blog interest and activity
  • Number of "Saves" in online reference managers (Mendeley, CiteULike)
  • Data and software use & reuse (GitHub, FigShare)
  • Slide presentation views and downloads (SlideShare)

Altmetric Explorer - Altmetric for Institutions 

Altmetric Explorer

UTAS subscribes to, a key source of almetric data.

Continue as a Guest, to start seeing University of Tasmania altmetrics.





Over time, your research output might attract activity like this:

Altmetric example


h-Index, g-Index, hc-Index and others

Analysis of citation data, rather than just its collection, has become a value-added service of some databases now.


  • Measures impact / research contribution of individual or group of researchers
  • h-index of 15, for example, means that there are 15 items that have been cited 15 or more times
  • Value will only increase over period of researcher's career
  • Can only compare h-indices of researchers in same field
  • Through its Citation Tracker, Scopus will calculate and graphically represent the h-index for individual authors, where papers have been published since 1995.
  • In Web of Science, the Citation Report includes the h-index
  • More information about the h-index


  • Introduced as an improvement of the h-index which "is insensitive to one or several outstandingly highly cited papers" (Egghe, 2006, p.132)
  • Measures the global citation performance of set of articles
  • If set is ranked in decreasing order of the number of citations that they received, the g-index is the (unique) largest number such that the top g articles received (together) at least g² citations.
  • A set of papers has a g-index of g if g is the highest rank, such that the top g papers have, together, at least g²citations
  • More information about g-index

Contemporary h-index (hc-index)

  • Based on the h-index, with an age-related weighting to each cited article
  • More information about hc-index​