The skewness of science in 219 sub-fields and a number of aggregates

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dc.contributor.author Albarrán, Pedro
dc.contributor.author Crespo, Juan A.
dc.contributor.author Ortuño, Ignacio
dc.contributor.author Ruiz-Castillo, Javier
dc.contributor.editor Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía
dc.date.accessioned 2010-12-15T15:02:17Z
dc.date.accessioned 2010-12-29T08:48:17Z
dc.date.available 2010-12-29T08:48:17Z
dc.date.issued 2010-10
dc.identifier.issn 2340-5031
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10016/9616
dc.description.abstract This paper studies evidence from Thomson Scientific about the citation process of 3.7 million articles published in the period 1998-2002 in 219 Web of Science categories, or sub-fields. Reference and citation distributions have very different characteristics across sub-fields. However, when analyzed with the Characteristic Scores and Scales technique, which is size and scale independent, the shape of these distributions appear extraordinarily similar. Reference distributions are mildly skewed, but citation distributions with a five-year citation window are highly skewed: the mean is twenty points above the median, while 9-10% of all articles in the upper tail account for about 44% of all citations. The aggregation of sub-fields into disciplines and fields according to several aggregation schemes preserve this feature of citation distributions. On the other hand, for 140 of the 219 sub-fields the existence of a power law cannot be rejected. However, contrary to what is generally believed, at the sub-field level the scaling parameter is above 3.5 most of the time, and power laws are relatively small: on average, they represent 2% of all articles and account for 13.5% of all citations. The results of the aggregation into disciplines and fields reveal that power law algebra is a subtle phenomenon.
dc.description.sponsorship European Community's Seventh Framework Program
dc.description.sponsorship The authors acknowledge financial support from the Spanish MEC through grants SEJ2007-63098, SEJ2006-05710, SEJ2007-67135, and SEJ2007-67436. This paper is part of the SCIFI-GLOW Collaborative Project supported by the European Commission’s Seventh Research Framework Programme, Contract no. SSH7-CT-2008-217436.
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dc.language.iso eng
dc.relation.ispartofseries UC3M Working papers. Economics
dc.relation.ispartofseries 10-38
dc.relation.hasversion http://hdl.handle.net/10016/10968
dc.relation.hasversion http://hdl.handle.net/10016/14543
dc.rights Atribución-NoComercial-SinDerivadas 3.0 España
dc.rights.uri http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/es/
dc.title The skewness of science in 219 sub-fields and a number of aggregates
dc.type workingPaper
dc.subject.eciencia Economía
dc.rights.accessRights openAccess
dc.relation.projectID info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/FP7/217436
dc.type.version submittedVersion
dc.identifier.repec we1038
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