Which Factors Impact An Article’s Level of Citations?

[We’re pleased to welcome Anne-Wil Harzing, Professor of International Management at Middlesex University, UK. She has published nearly 100 refereed journals articles and books/book chapters and has been listed on Thomson Reuter’s Essential Science Indicators top 1% most cited academics in Economics & Business worldwide since 2007. Below, Harzing comments on a study published in the Journal of Management Education, entitled,”Identifying Research Topic Development in Business and Management Education Research Using Legitimation Code Theory.” From Harzing:]

What makes an article highly cited and why does it matter for academic evaluation?

I was recently asked to write a commentary on Arbaugh, Fornaciari and Hwang (2016) article “Identifying Research Topic Development in Business and Management Education Research Using Legitimation Code Theory”. The authors use citation analysis – with Google Scholar as their source of citation data – to track the development of Business and Management Education research by studying the field’s 100 most highly cited articles.

Factors influencing an article’s level of citations:

In their article, the authors distinguish several factors that might impact on an article’s levJME_72ppiRGB_powerpoint.jpgel of citations: the topic it addresses, the profile of the author(s) who wrote it and the prominence of the journal that the article is published in.

Although these three factors might seem rather intuitive, and the authors certainly are not the first to identify them, there is a surprising dearth of studies in the bibliometrics literature that attempt to disentangle the relative impact of these factors on citation outcomes.

Why does it matter for academic evaluation?

If citation levels of individual articles are determined more by what is published (topic) and who publishes it (author) rather than by where it is published (journal), this would provide clear evidence that the frequently used practice of employing the ISI journal impact factor to evaluate individual articles or authors is inappropriate.

Our regression analysis shows that, when all factors are taken into account at the same time, it is what is published (topic) and who has published it (author) that have the largest impact on citations, not where it is published (journal).

Hence, the commonly used practice of using the prestige of a journal – oftentimes operationalized as the ISI journal impact factor – as a proxy for (citation) impact is clearly not appropriate for the field of Business and Management Education. It is thus rightly condemned by San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment and should not be used in academic evaluation.


Harzing maintains an extensive website (www.harzing.com) with resources for international management and academic publishing, including the Journal Quality List and Publish or Perish, a software program that retrieves and analyzes academic citations.  Anne-Wil blogs at http://www.harzing.com/blog/

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Writing With Resonance

jmia_26_1-cover[We’re pleased to welcome Ninna Meier from Copenhagan Business School, and Charlotte Wegener from Aalborg University. Meier and Wegener recently published an article in Journal of Management Inquiry entitled “Writing with Resonance.” From Meier and Wegener:]

  • What inspired you to be interested in this topic?
    We started writing about resonance and practicing resonant writing in the spring of 2014. We wanted to understand why some texts have impact and others don’t; why some texts are a pleasure to read, why their messages linger. In short: we wanted to understand resonance as something which may happen between writer, text, and reader.  With writing being the primary mode of dissemination of research results for most academics, we wondered why this important topic was so poorly understood and received so little serious scholarly attention.
  • Were there findings that were surprising to you?
    As we started experimenting with our writing, academic and otherwise, we learnt that this is something you can offer through your writing, but never deliver. We also found valuable lessons in how to write this way from fiction writers.
  • How do you see this study influencing future research and/or practice?
    Based on our investigations and experiences we are now breaking grounds for a new research field and writing practice, as this way of writing, which we call Open Writing, in our view is obviously linked to calls for Open Science.

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2013 Impact Factor and Ranking Results

SAGE is pleased to announce a strong performance across its journals portfolio in the recently released 2013 Journal Citation Reports® (Thomson Reuters, 2014) with an increase of indexed titles on prioJCR 2013r year to 470 across both the Social Science (SSCI) and Science (SCI) Citation Indexes. More than 60% of SAGE titles are now ranked within the top two quartiles of their JCR subject categories and 108 titles have achieved a top-10 category rank. Six SAGE titles were awarded their first Impact Factor. To see the new impact factors for all SAGE journals, please click here.

Here are just some of the highlights in:


2-Year Impact Factor

5-Year Impact Factor


2-Year Impact Factor

5-Year Impact Factor

  • Journal of Management #3 (8.027)
  • Administrative Science Quarterly #7 (7.057)
  • Organizational Research Methods #11 (5.713)

The September issueof Administrative Science Quarterly (ASQ) is available to access!  Administrative Science Quarterly is a top-rank, quarterly, peer-reviewed journal that publishes the best theoretical and empirical papers on organizational studies from dissertations and the evolving, new work of more established scholars, as well as interdisciplinary work in organizational theory, and informative book reviews.

For a limited time, enjoy free access to the November issue of the Journal of Management (JOM).  Peer-reviewed and published bi-monthly, JOM is committed to publishing scholarly empirical and theoretical research articles that have a high impact on the management field as a whole. JOM encourages new ideas or new perspectives on existing research. Manuscripts that are suitable for publication in JOM cover domains such as business strategy and policy, entrepreneurship, human resource management, organizational behavior, organizational theory, and research methods.

We wish to thank our authors, editors, reviewers and editorial board members for their valuable contributions to these top-ranked journals.

This is the last week for free access to all SAGE journals throughout October! Read all of these journals and more: bit.ly/sj2014social

Jerry Davis asks “Why Do We Still Have Journals?”

book-look-1382050-mGerald F. Davis, editor of Administrative Science Quarterly, explores this question in his editorial essay from the June issue of from Administrative Science Quarterly.

The abstract:

The Web has greatly reduced the barriers to entry for new journals and other platforms for communicating scientific output, and the number of journals continues to multiply. This leaves readers and authors with the daunting cognitive challenge of navigating the literature and discerning contributionsASQ_v59n2_Jun2014_cover.indd that are both relevant and significant. Meanwhile, measures of journal impact that might guide the use of the literature have become more visible and consequential, leading to “impact gamesmanship” that renders the measures increasingly suspect. The incentive system created by our journals is broken. In this essay, I argue that the core technology of journals is not their distribution but their review process. The organization of the review process reflects assumptions about what a contribution is and how it should be evaluated. Through their review processes, journals can certify contributions, convene scholarly communities, and curate works that are worth reading. Different review processes thereby create incentives for different kinds of work. It’s time for a broader dialogue about how we connect the aims of the social science enterprise to our system of journals.

Read “Why Do We Still Have Journals?” from Administrative Science Quarterly for free by clicking here. Want to know about all the latest from Administrative Science Quarterly? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

How Are Editorial Boards Comprised for Marketing Journals?

Becoming a member of an editorial board  can be a paramount step in the life of an academic. Scholars are able to explorelearning-with-pencil-948188-m new ideas in their field while increasing their notoriety. But just how are editorial boards of marketing journals constituted? That’s what authors Yue Pan and Jason Q. Zhang set out to research in their article titled “The Composition of the Editorial Boards of General Marketing Journals” from Journal of Marketing Education.

The abstract:

Unlike the diversity issues in corporate governance, the diversity in top academic positions (e.g., editorial boards of academic journals in business) is rather under researched. The editorial boards of academic marketing JME(D)_72ppiRGB_powerpointjournals are important gatekeepers and trendsetters in the creation and dissemination of marketing knowledge. Membership on journal editorial boards usually signals scholarly stature and professional advancement. This study examines the composition of editorial boards of general marketing journals, and compares it with what it was like 15 years ago. The study also investigates the impact of the composition of editorial boards on journal quality. We find that women’s participation in editorial boards generally corresponds to their presence in the profession. We also find an overall small representation of board members affiliated with nonacademic institutions. While the presence of women, practitioners, or international members does not have any relationship with journal quality, the presence of scholars affiliated with doctoral programs seems to correlate with journal quality. The number of female and international members on the boards increased, whereas practitioners’ representation dropped from 1997 to 2012.

How Do Industrial Influences Affect Executives?

06GOM10_Covers.indd[Editor’s Note: We are pleased to welcome  Sabina Nielsen of Copenhagen Business School, who collaborated with Siebel Yamak and Alejandro Escribá-Esteve to publish their paper “The Role of External Environment in Upper Echelons Theory: A Review of Existing Literature and Future Research Directions.” The paper will appear in Group and Organization Management and can be read now in the journal’s OnlineFirst section here.]

In doing this research, we were intrigued by the fact that Upper Echelons research has been developed mostly along the line of TMT-firm performance while it has been less able to unveil environment-TMT relationships. Whereas the role of the external environment has been recognized from the inception of upper echelons theory, existing reviews (Carpenter, Geletkanycz, & Sanders, 2004; Fınkelstein, Hambrick, & Cannella 2009) have paid scarce attention to the external context in which top management teams (TMTs) are embedded. Consequently, applying institutional and industrial organization theories, we have developed a cross-level conceptual model outlining the direct, mediating and moderating effects of the external environment on upper echelons and have outlined possible avenues for future research.

First, an updated UE conceptual model needs to take into account the country or transnational level context in which organizations are embedded. We argue that both industry and institutional contexts are important levels of analysis that may help advance our understanding of the antecedents and consequences of top management teams’ (TMTs) composition and behavior. Second, while the effects of industry characteristics on executives and their actions are recognized, theorizing about such effects has been underdeveloped (exceptions include studies on managerial discretion, CEO tenure and CEO succession which all focus on individual level of analysis). Therefore, to contribute to the upper echelons literature, we reviewed all empirical papers investigating TMT- environment relations and identified gaps in TMT-environment research. For instance, the co-evolution of various dynamic aspects of the industry and institutional environment and TMT composition as well as the impact of mediating mechanisms needs to be explored. Furthermore, research on the impact of transnational institutions on TMT processes, values and composition appears to be quite limited. Similarly, there is a lack of research on the influence of TMTs on state policies, transnational institutions and non-governmental organizations. Future research should explore the social and political mechanisms that TMTs may use to influence the institutional environment. We believe that combining institutional theory and upper echelon theory may bring in the impact of human agency in the institutional creation of meaning. Briefly, our research gives valuable insights on untapped research topics in upper echelons.

Read “The Role of External Environment in Upper Echelons Theory: A Review of Existing Literature and Future Research Directions” in Group and Organization Management.

sabina-nielsenSabina Nielsen is professor in strategic leadership and diversity at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. Her research is at the intersection of strategy and international management with a particular focus on the composition, dynamics and decision-making of top management teams and boards of directors. She is currently serving as a representative-at-large of the Global Strategy Group at the Strategic Management Society.

sibelyamak_000 Sibel Yamak is professor of management and director of the Social Sciences Graduate School at Galatasaray University. Her publications, have focued on business elites, top management teams, governance, and corporate social responsibility. Sibel is currently an editorial board member of British Journal of Management, Society and Business Review, and YAD.

 thCA2UBJLIAlejandro Escribá-Esteve is associate professor of strategic management at the University of Valencia in Spain. He is currently member of the Board of the European Academy of Management and chair of the 2014 EURAM conference. Since 2009, Alejandro has been co organizer of the Track on Top Management Teams at the European Academy of Management and co-chairs the series of EIASM international workshops on Top Management Teams and Business Strategy.

Top Five: Climate Change

Congratulations to The Journal of Environment & Development! This year, JED received its first Impact Factor (1.079) in the 2012 Journal Citation Reports® (Thomson Reuters, 2013) and is ranked in the JCR’s Environmental Studies and Planning & Development categories. JED provides a forum that bridges the parallel debates among policy makers, attorneys, academics, business people, and NGO activists worldwide. We invite you to read the current top five most-read articles in the journal, free to access now through September 6 using the links below:

Raymond Clémençon, From Rio 1992 to Rio 2012 and Beyond: Revisiting the Role of Trade Rules and Financial Transfers for Sustainable Development, March 2012

JED_72ppiRGB_150pixwHenrike Brecht, Susmita Dasgupta, Benoit Laplante, Siobhan Murray, and David Wheeler, Sea-Level Rise and Storm Surges: High Stakes for a Small Number of Developing Countries, March 2012

Mari Mulyani and Paul Jepson, REDD+ and Forest Governance in Indonesia: A Multistakeholder Study of Perceived Challenges and Opportunities, first published on July 12, 2013

Daniel A. Mazmanian, John Jurewitz, and Hal T. Nelson, The Paradox of “Acting Globally While Thinking Locally”: Discordance in Climate Change Adaption Policy, June 2013

Joseph E. Aldy and Robert N. Stavins, The Promise and Problems of Pricing Carbon: Theory and Experience, June 2012

Browse the current issue of JED, and stay abreast of the journal’s latest findings: subscribe to the JED RSS feed, and sign up for e-alerts to hear about new articles and issues published online before they’re in print.