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Impact Metrics and Scholarly Attribution

Discover your research impact, manage attribution of your research works, and search citations.

Importance of Author Impact

Using Citation Metrics to determine Author Impact can help scholars not only identify significant voices in their field, but also provide one indicator of an author's perceived value - by demonstrating where and how one's work has been cited. Citation metrics have been applied for purposes of hiring, promotion and tenure.

Citation Databases and Indices can be used to:

  • Demonstrate how often an author's work has been cited
  • Discover who is doing related work
  • Track the published work of colleagues and competitors
  • Explore the evolution of theories and ideas through citation tracking
  • Identify key authors in a field
  • Build a research profile so others can find and follow one's work

Recommended Tools include:

Web of Science Citation Report

Google Scholar Profile

No one tool will provide complete information about an author's citations. Each database only searches material in that database. It is best to explore multiple sources.

Also, remember that citation counts never tell the whole story. They don't indicate why a item was cited or how significant or positive the reference was, and the indices that measure author impact often don't consider the duration of an author's career. Lastly, citation counts and indices only should be compared within an academic discipline. Publishing patterns in physics, for example, differ from those in Sociology.

What is ORCID?

ORCID logo

ORCID stands for Open Researcher and Contributor ID. It is a sixteen-digit permanent digital identifier for people. It allows linking publications and other products to a single person, avoiding confusion caused by identical names, arbitrary use of middle initials, and change of workplace. The database of identifiers is maintained by a not-for-profit international organization.

See the library's ORCID page for more info about ORCIDs.

My ResearcherID


ResearcherID is a global, multi-disciplinary scholarly research community. With a unique identifier assigned to each author in ResearcherID, you can eliminate author misidentification and view an author's citation metrics instantly. Search the registry to find collaborators, review publication lists and explore how research is used around the world.

Manage your citation metrics using ResearcherID. You can add automatically track citation counts and add your publications directly from Web of Science searches. Registration is free and allows you to manage your publication list and on-line profile and find collaborators.

Researcher ID allows you to generate an ORCID or insert your previously generated ORCID.


H-index = scholarly impact

A scientist has index h if h of [his/her] Np papers have at least h citations each, and the other (Np − h) papers have at most h citations each. The H-Index was developed by Jorge Hirsch in his quest to find a better way to rank authors within their field.

As described in this article from Wired Magazine, H-Index rankings do seem to generally mirror scholarly success, but with an advantage to authors who have published longer.

Since publishing output varies by discipline, authors' H-Index rankings should only be compared within a discipline.

Resources to access the H-Index are listed below:

Publish or Perish

Publish or Perish (PoP) is a free download created by Anne-Wil Harzing that uses Google Scholar to gather data and measure author impact. It uses various metrics including alternatives to the H-Index.