Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, June 20, 2009

OA journal ranks #1 in its field for impact

Gunther Eysenbach, Open Access journal JMIR rises to top of its discipline, Gunther Eysenbach's Random Research Rants, June 20, 2009.  Excerpt:

I am still shaken and thrilled by yesterdays' big news: The Open Access publication Journal of Medical Internet Research (JMIR), which I created 10 years ago, has now established itself as THE leading peer-reviewed journal in the field of ehealth, or as I prefer to put it, for "health and health care in the Internet age". Yesterday, on June 19th, 2009, the Impact Factor rankings for 2008 were published by Thomson Reuters....The Impact Factor for JMIR in 2008 is now an amazing 3.6 (up from 3.0 last year, and 2.9 the year before). This has to be seen against the background that medical informatics journals are typically not cited very well and have typical impact factors between 1-2.

Perhaps the biggest news due to its high symbolic value is that JMIR is now the top, number one ranked journal in its discipline, and has finally officially overtaken JAMIA, the official Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (2008 IF 3.4), which has been on the #1 spot in this discipline for decades. For a small, independently, low-budget journal this is a major achievement and truly a David vs Goliath situation. AMIA is probably the most influential scientific society in the medical informatics field, and its journal JAMIA enjoys significant backing by the association. JAMIA is owned and published by Elsevier. I may be wrong on this (leave a comment!), but to my knowledge this is the first time in history that an independent Open Access journal takes the top spot in its discipline, overtaking the long-term top journal in a JCR (Journal Citation Reports) category....I know that the Impact Factor has its problems as a metric, but Impact Factors continue to be a valuable measure of a journalís quality for authors, librarians and societies, and the high impact of JMIR sends a clear message to traditional publishers as well as to societies in terms of what Open Access publishing means for impact.

JMIR is now ranked the top (#1) journal in the medical informatics category (out of 20 journals), and second (#2) in the health sciences & services category (out of 62 journals), by Impact Factor....

The new top position in the field means that we will be getting even more submissions....

Comment.  The OA impact advantage helps journals, not just authors.  TA journals may have their reasons not to convert to OA, but they can't pretend that there's nothing in the other pan of the scale.  Congratulations to JMIR and Gunther.