Discussion Paper of the Institute for Organisational Economics 12/2011

Ein Forschungsleistungsranking auf der Grundlage von Google Scholar
Alexander Dilger/Harry Müller
December 2011



A Research Ranking based on Google Scholar

Regarding the evaluation of academic research performance, the currently predominant method of judging an individual paper according to the academic journal it was published in implies a few drawbacks: Monographs and edited volumes cannot be assessed, and estimating the quality of an individual article by looking at the journal it was published in is problematic. This article presents a different approach by measuring the individual impact of each researcher. As a data source we use Google Scholar because it offers the best coverage available in the field of German academic literature in business administration. However, Google Scholar implies qualitative shortcomings that deserve a careful inspection and revision.

We analyse all recent publications (2005-2009) of all members of the German Academic Association for Business Research (VHB). Among the researchers, the citations are distributed highly unequal and follow Pareto’s Law: Few scholars gather a large part of all citations. Between the different subfields of business administration there exist large differences regarding their publication and citation cultures. This should be considered carefully when interpreting the results of the ranking.