Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Impact Metrics

What is the Article Impact ?

© Photo by Gerd Altmann, pixabay license

The article impact is measured by the number of times an article has been cited by other publications.

As a researcher, it can be useful to

  • Track the impact of your research
  • Find articles on your research topic by following the articles that cite you
  • Identify the most cited articles
  • Find collaborations with other researchers by following researchers that cite you

Keep in mind:

  • A high volume of citations does not guarantee the quality of an article, as questionable articles are sometimes the most cited
  • Review articles are usually more cited than original research articles
  • Citations take time to accumulate and citation patterns differ from one field to another.
  • Good communication can help you improve the visibility of your research (by increasing your number of citations)
  • Co-publishing can improve your number of citations and your visibility
  • Citations counts are also used by new alternative metrics (altmetrics)


Tools for citation tracking available at the IHEID or freely available:

Several databases have the tools cited by which provides citation counts, depending on where the article is published. Publishers such as Taylor and Francis, Sage and Wiley produce data about citations.

  Google Scholar


  • Give the number of citations for an article but also information about how that article has been cited. If other articles mention, support or contrast its ideas.

Keep in mind:

  • Databases are verified so there is no double counting of citations. If you use Google Scholar, make sure there is no double counting of citations and verify that every reference is indeed a scientific publication
  • If you mention several citations, always mention the source of that number/count
  • Google Scholar does not disclose which sources it uses
  • For other ways to find your citations count, go to the "where to check your h-index" section