Open Access Does Not Equal More Citations, Study Finds (via @tonnet)

Open Access Does Not Equal More Citations, Study Finds

April 1, 2011, 4:12 pm

A new study suggests that while open access appears to increase the readership of scholarly articles, it doesn’t increase how often they’re cited.

The study stands in contrast with earlier research that suggested open-access articles were referenced by other scholars more frequently.

Philip M. Davis, a postdoctoral associate in the department of communication at Cornell University, was given access to 36 subscription-based journals produced by seven different publishers. In 2007 and early 2008, he randomly made approximately 20 percent of their articles free.

I find this counter-intuitive, but it’s an interesting finding.

I think that one of the ways that we (academics) can push open publication is to show that it results in a greater number of citations, thus impact factor. If this is the case, authors will favor open journals; thus, open journals will have access to better articles.

If findings like this prove to be accurate, that could frustrate a move to open journals. However, I have to guess that, to a certain extent, it is going to happen regardless.

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