Citation counts measure the impact of an author by counting the number of times he or she is cited in another work. There are different ways to calculate this.
“The h-index is an author-level metric that attempts to measure both the productivity and citation impact of the publications of an author. The index is based on the set of the author's most cited papers and the number of citations that they have received in other publications. The index can also be applied to the productivity and impact of a scholarly journal as well as a group of scientists, such as a department or university or country." -from Wikipedia
The h-index is calculated using the total number of papers published by an author and the total number of times each of those papers has been cited. For example, an author with an h-index of 23 has published at least 23 papers with at least 23 citations to each of those papers.
Like most bibliometrics, the h-index is discipline specific, and average h-indexes vary widely from one subject area to another. Comparisons should not be made across disciplines or subject areas.
The three major bibliometric databases are Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar. They allow you to easily track an author's impact by:
Web of Science covers the STEM fields and includes the following indexes:
When browsing it, consider:
Scopus includes journals, conference materials, and book records in science, technology, medicine, social sciences, arts, and humanities. As of January 2016, it contains more than 60 million records, including publications since 1823 and patents. References are only included for records after 1996.
Scopus assigns each author a unique Author ID that can be used to locate more information.
In addition to scholarly journals, Google Scholar includes government and academic websites, conference papers, and patents. Google Scholar displays results according to the number of times a work has been cited. Google Scholar covers the STEM fields and social sciences, arts, and humanities. It is unknown exactly which indexes and websites Google Scholar includes in its results.
Use Publish or Perish to learn more about an author’s impact.
The following factors provide additional evidence of research impact and might be relevant for competitive grant applications and academic promotions: