May 22, 2022

Research Article: “A Quantitative and Qualitative Citation Analysis of Retracted Articles in the Humanities” (Preprint)

The article linked below (preprint) was recently posted on arXiv.


A Quantitative and Qualitative Citation Analysis of Retracted Articles in the Humanities


Ivan Heibi
University of Bologna

Silvio Peroni
University of Bologna


via arXiv
November 9, 2021


In this article, we show and discuss the results of a quantitative and qualitative analysis of citations to retracted publications in the humanities domain. Our study was conducted by selecting retracted papers in the humanities domain and marking their main characteristics (e.g., retraction reason). Then, we gathered the citing entities and annotated their basic metadata (e.g., title, venue, subject, etc.) and the characteristics of their in-text citations (e.g., intent, sentiment, etc.).

Source: arXiv:2111.05223

Using these data, we performed a quantitative and qualitative study of retractions in the humanities, presenting descriptive statistics and a topic modeling analysis of the citing entities’ abstracts and the in-text citation contexts. As part of our main findings, we noticed a continuous increment in the overall number of citations after the retraction year, with few entities which have either mentioned the retraction or expressed a negative sentiment toward the cited entities. In addition, on several occasions we noticed a higher concern and awareness when it was about citing a retracted article, by the citing entities belonging to the health sciences domain, if compared to the humanities and the social sciences domains. Philosophy, arts, and history are the humanities areas that showed the higher concerns toward the retraction.

Direct to Full Text Article
35 pages; PDF.

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