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      An index to quantify an individual's scientific research output.

       J. E. Hirsch (2005)
      I propose the index h, defined as the number of papers with citation number > or =h, as a useful index to characterize the scientific output of a researcher.
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        Citation indexes for science; a new dimension in documentation through association of ideas.

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          Relative Citation Ratio (RCR): A New Metric That Uses Citation Rates to Measure Influence at the Article Level

          Despite their recognized limitations, bibliometric assessments of scientific productivity have been widely adopted. We describe here an improved method to quantify the influence of a research article by making novel use of its co-citation network to field-normalize the number of citations it has received. Article citation rates are divided by an expected citation rate that is derived from performance of articles in the same field and benchmarked to a peer comparison group. The resulting Relative Citation Ratio is article level and field independent and provides an alternative to the invalid practice of using journal impact factors to identify influential papers. To illustrate one application of our method, we analyzed 88,835 articles published between 2003 and 2010 and found that the National Institutes of Health awardees who authored those papers occupy relatively stable positions of influence across all disciplines. We demonstrate that the values generated by this method strongly correlate with the opinions of subject matter experts in biomedical research and suggest that the same approach should be generally applicable to articles published in all areas of science. A beta version of iCite, our web tool for calculating Relative Citation Ratios of articles listed in PubMed, is available at

            Author and article information

            [1 ]Medical Scientist Training Program, Mayo Clinic , Rochester, Minnesota, USA
            [2 ]Health Psychology Section, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London , London, UK
            Author notes
            [Correspondence to ] Dr Andrew M Harrison, Medical Scientist Training Program, Mayo Clinic, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA; Harrison.Andrew@
            BMJ Innov
            BMJ Innov
            BMJ Innovations
            BMJ Publishing Group (BMA House, Tavistock Square, London, WC1H 9JR )
            October 2016
            23 September 2016
            : 2
            : 4
            : 141-143
            5451540 bmjinnov-2016-000135 10.1136/bmjinnov-2016-000135
            Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to

            This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:

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