Research Article

Concentration of the Most-Cited Papers in the Scientific Literature: Analysis of Journal Ecosystems

  • John P. A. Ioannidis mail

    To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail:

    Affiliations: Clinical and Molecular Epidemiology Unit, Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology, University of Ioannina School of Medicine, Ioannina, Greece, Biomedical Research Institute, Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas, Ioannina, Greece, Institute for Clinical Research and Health Policy Studies, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America

  • Published: December 20, 2006
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0000005

Reader Comments (2)

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Posted by DavidGoodman on 23 Dec 2006 at 23:35 GMT

Papers are often judged by the journals they appear in, whether informally, or by relative IF of the journal compared to others in the field.
This has been often criticised.
Such criticism is not justified.

This is not the least suprising, but it is very good to have such a clear validation.

RE: Implications

dsingh replied to DavidGoodman on 16 Jan 2007 at 18:16 GMT

Why is the criticism not justified. Good science is good science regardless of where it is published, and vice versa. Certain journals have built a reputation, rightfully so, mostly based on editorial guidelines.

However, if one is to apply long tail theory to scientific publishing, anyone can publish quality science in the PLoS journals or the BMC journals, this making good publication opportunities available to a larger audience (and the opportunity to access that science). This makes it possible for those historically shut out of the somewhat clique-y publication process to get their research noticed and discussed. I see all of these as positive facts.

The paper is certainly a good one. The results are not surprising. I hope that in a decade, the trend changes and there is a longer, higher tail of scientific publication.