Anderson, Alun. "No Citation Analyses Please, We're British," Science, 252 (3 May 1991), p.

 

Anderson, Alun. "No Citation Analyses Please, We're British," Science, 252 (3 May 1991), p.
639.

In the last several months, there have been several articles dealing with the potential of the
citation index. The index has been hailed as an objective measure of ideas that matter. An article
without citations is "trivial."

Here is a reaction. British scientists are reported to very much against the imposition of this sort
of analysis. And unidentified British academic is quoted "Citation analysis...is flawed to the point
of being both misleading and inherently absurd."

The critics have not been mild: "Pseudoscience" and "totally mistaken" are representative
reactions to the potential threat of using citation analysis. People cite "teachers, colleagues, and
friends merely to improve their citation count."

The criticism is regarded as excessive by David Pendlebury, editor of the ISI's Science Watch.

The Britishers are reported to be willing to accept peer review. The hope is that peer review will
continue to be the most frequently used measure of academic prestige and esteem.