Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, September 01, 2007

More on early impact v. increased impact

Henk F. Moed, The effect of “open access” on citation impact: An analysis of ArXiv's condensed matter section, Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, August 30, 2007.  (Thanks to William Walsh.)

Abstract:   This article statistically analyzes how the citation impact of articles deposited in the Condensed Matter section of the preprint server ArXiv (hosted by Cornell University), and subsequently published in a scientific journal, compares to that of articles in the same journal that were not deposited in the archive. Its principal aim is to further illustrate and roughly estimate the effect of two factors, “early view” and “quality bias,” on differences in citation impact between these two sets of papers, using citation data from Thomson Scientific's Web of Science. It presents estimates for a number of journals in the field of condensed matter physics. To discriminate between an “open access” effect and an early view effect, longitudinal citation data were analyzed covering a time period as long as 7 years. Quality bias was measured by calculating ArXiv citation impact differentials at the level of individual authors publishing in a journal, taking into account coauthorship. The analysis provided evidence of a strong quality bias and early view effect. Correcting for these effects, there is in a sample of six condensed matter physics journals studied in detail no sign of a general “open access advantage” of papers deposited in ArXiv. The study does provide evidence that ArXiv accelerates citation due to the fact that ArXiv makes papers available earlier rather than makes them freely available. 

PS:  I blogged the preprint of this article on November 15, 2006.