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EGU journals to display article-level metrics

15 October 2013

Copernicus Publications, the publisher of the EGU open access journals, has just launched article-level metrics (ALMs) for all its journals.

While traditional ways of measuring impact operate at journal level, ALMs allow us to assess the overall influence and reach of each individual research paper. They do this by quantifying the usage (downloads and views), impact (citations), saves (bookmarks) and discussion (social media and blog coverage) at the article level.

In EGU open access publications, ALM information is visible under a Metrics tab available for final revised papers published in EGU journals (such as Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics), as well as articles under open review in EGU discussion forums (such as Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions). Publications where ALMs are already available for all articles include an ALM logo on the left-hand side menu on the journal website. All scientific papers published in EGU open access journals will have ALMs by the end of the week.

Ulrich Pöschl, Chair of the EGU Publications Committee, said in an email statement: “For EGU publications, the introduction of article-level metrics is another important step in the endeavour of improving scientific communication and quality assurance. ALMs are important complementary elements in the successful interactive open access publishing approach of EGU, which features public review and interactive discussion on the internet (multi-stage open peer review).”

Copernicus Publications now track citations from CrossRef and Google Scholar (and will soon include Scopus and Web of Science citations), downloads and views since January 2013 and bookmarks in both CiteULike and Mendeley. In addition, mentions on sites such as Research Blogging, Facebook, ScienceSeeker, Nature Blogs, Wikipedia, Wordpress(.com), Reddit and Google Blogs are also tracked, and Copernicus plans to incorporate Twitter in the near future.

ALMs allow authors to stay up-to-date with the influence and reach of their published articles and share this information with peers, funding institutions and others. For publishers, and for the EGU, they provide critical insight into what articles generate the most activity, which can then be advertised via the journals’ websites or on the EGU’s social media channels.

The Public Library of Science (PLOS) launched ALMs in 2009 and made their app available to other publishers. Copernicus is implementing ALMs in all its journals using the PLOS open source app. Martin Rasmussen, the Managing Director of Copernicus, said in an interview with PLOS blogs: “We hope that more publishers will join this initiative and consider implementing it to enable direct comparison across journals.”