Citation Characterization and Impact Normalization in Bioinformatics Journals

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Citation patterns, Bibliometric data, Citing propensity

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Bioinformatics journals publish research findings of intellectual synergies among subfields such as biology, mathematics, and computer science. The objective of this study is to characterize the citation patterns in bioinformatics journals and their correspondent knowledge subfields. Our study analyzed bibliometric data (impact factor, cited-half-life, and references-per-article) of bioinformatics journals and their related subfields collected from the Journal Citation Reports (JCR). The findings showed that bioinformatics journals' citations are field-dependent, with scattered patterns in article life span and citing propensity. Bioinformatics journals originally derived from biology-related subfields have shorter article life spans, more citing on average, and higher impact factors. Those journals, derived from mathematics and statistics, demonstrate converse citation patterns. Journal impact factors were normalized, taking into account the impacts of article life spans and citing propensity. A comparison of these normalized factors to JCR journal impact factors showed rearrangements in the ranking orders of a number of individual journals, but a high overall correlation with JCR impact factors.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, v. 63, issue 3, p. 490-497