March 5, 2021

New Research Article: “Self-Citation is the Hallmark of Productive Authors, of Any Gender”

The following article was published today by PLoS One.

Title

Self-Citation is the Hallmark of Productive Authors, of Any Gender

Authors

Shubhanshu Mishra
School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Brent D. Fegley
School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Jana Diesner
School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Vetle I. Torvik
School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Source

PLoS One
13(9): e0195773
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0195773

Abstract

It was recently reported that men self-cite >50% more often than women across a wide variety of disciplines in the bibliographic database JSTOR. Here, we replicate this finding in a sample of 1.6 million papers from Author-ity, a version of PubMed with computationally disambiguated author names. More importantly, we show that the gender effect largely disappears when accounting for prior publication count in a multidimensional statistical model. Gender has the weakest effect on the probability of self-citation among an extensive set of features tested, including byline position, affiliation, ethnicity, collaboration size, time lag, subject-matter novelty, reference/citation counts, publication type, language, and venue. We find that self-citation is the hallmark of productive authors, of any gender, who cite their novel journal publications early and in similar venues, and more often cross citation-barriers such as language and indexing. As a result, papers by authors with short, disrupted, or diverse careers miss out on the initial boost in visibility gained from self-citations. Our data further suggest that this disproportionately affects women because of attrition and not because of disciplinary under-specialization.

Direct to Full Text Article

See Also: Author-ity: Tools for Identifying Medline Articles Written by a Particular Author

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

Share