Phil Davis

I am an independent researcher and publishing consultant specializing in the statistical analysis of readership and citation data. I am a former postdoctoral researcher in science communication and former science librarian. http://phil-davis.org/
Phil Davis has written 272 posts for The Scholarly Kitchen

Citation Boost or Bad Data? Academia.edu Research Under Scrutiny

If a free website claimed that you could double citations to your papers simply by uploading them to their file sharing network, would you believe it? Or would you check their data? Continue reading

Why are Authors Citing Older Papers?

Scholars are citing an increasingly aging collection of scholarship. Does this reflect the growing ease with accessing the literature, or a structural shift in the way science is funded–and the way scientists are rewarded? Continue reading

MONOPOLY-The Publishers Edition

First released in 1935 as a game to teach children the evils of unchecked market capitalism, MONOPOLY-The Publishers’ edition keeps the tradition going. Continue reading

Knockoffs Erode Trust in Metrics Market

If the Internet created a burgeoning market of cheap academic journal knockoffs, should we be surprised to witness new knockoff ratings companies? Continue reading

Production Plummets at PLOS–But For a Good Reason

Is there (ever) a good time to overhaul a publishers’ production system? If you care about your journals’ Impact Factor, the answer is “yes.” Continue reading

PeerJ–A PLOS ONE Contender in 2015?

PeerJ’s first Impact Factor is not expected to surpass 2.000. Without the scale of PLOS ONE, PeerJ may need to seek a larger, diversified buyer. What the journal has to offer other publishers is less clear. Continue reading

Social Media And Its Impact on Medical Research

A social media campaign may have little (if any) effect on article readership, a recent study reports. Continue reading

Peak PLOS: Planning for a Future of Declining Revenue

How does a non-profit publisher plan for its future when its revenue stream starts resembling the stock market? Continue reading

Growing Impact of Older Articles

Scholars are citing proportionally more older material, a new Google paper reports. Digital publishing and delivery, and better search engines can only explain part of the trend. Something much bigger is taking place. Continue reading

PeerJ Grows Steadily With Papers, Authors

PeerJ is growing, publishing more papers and attracting more authors, although it is not clear whether the company is moving toward financial sustainability. In a crowded market of multidisciplinary open access journals, the success/failure of PeerJ may be determined when it receives its first Impact Factor. Continue reading

Growing Impact of Non-Elite Journals

The scientific literature is expanding while the number of publication slots in elite journals has shrunk. Is it any wonder why many more highly-cited articles are found in non-elite journals? Continue reading

When a Journal Sinks, Should the Editors Go Down with the Ship?

This year, Thomson Reuters suspended six business journals for engaging in a citation cartel. Should the authors be held responsible for the malfeasance of their editors? We propose a new solution to punishing the community for the poor decisions of the few.

Continue reading

Visualizing World Article Production

World production of scientific literature continues to grow at nearly 3% per year. China, Brazil, and India account for a much larger share of the world’s output, while the United States and Japan’s share continues to decline. Interactive world maps show the growth of article production, and focus on the countries that continue to dominate the top literature. Continue reading

Is Open Access a Cause or an Effect?

Why can’t researchers agree on whether Open Access is the cause of more citations or merely associated with better performing papers? The answer is in the methods. Continue reading

Libraries Receive Shrinking Share of University Expenditures

Over the past three decades, the research library has been receiving a smaller proportion of the university budget. Does this trend reflect the failure of library administrators and the declining relevance of libraries? Or does it tell the story of self-control and growing efficiency against a backdrop of spiraling higher education costs? Continue reading

Did He Just Say That?! The Perils of Video Recording the Conference Presentation

Science journalist, John Bohannon, castigates publishers as corrupt, scientists as furious, and journalists as the fix. Or did he? Continue reading

Open Access Publication Gains Acceptance With Authors, Licenses Still Problematic

A recent survey of authors by Taylor and Francis reveals growing acceptance of open access publishing; however, Creative Commons licensing may still pose a problem. Continue reading

PLOS ONE Output Falls 25 Percent

Publication output for the largest journal in science continues to fall, just not as fast as leading indicators would predict. Continue reading

What Motivates Reviewers? An Experiment in Economics

Shorter deadlines, email reminders, and cash incentives can speed up the peer review process and minimize unintended effects, a recent study suggests. Can it work for other disciplines? Continue reading

What Researchers Value from Publishers, Canadian Survey

Peer review, journal reputation, and fast publication were selected by Canadian researchers as the top three factors in deciding where to submit their manuscripts, trumping open access, article-level metrics, and mobile access, a recent study reports. Continue reading

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