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importance-key for journals

forsdyke forsdyke at post.queensu.ca
Tue Jun 22 07:54:44 EST 1999

Nicole Klapka wrote:
> I'm trying to stay up-to-date with important research results in biology ,
> especially neurobiology.
> I don't know how to find out which journal could be important to read
> regularily. I think there must be a list of all important scientific
> journals and a kind of importance rank..... I heard something about that...

    You are probably thinking of the Science Citation Index, published
by the Institute for Scientific Information, Philadelphia. This tells
you how often a paper is cited, and also produces an index called the
"Impact Factor" which allows some ranking of journals.

     However, your real question is where should I look for the "cutting
edge", "breakthroughs" in neurobiology? This is virtually impossible to
answer. Mendel's work was published in an obscure European journal and
it took 35 years for the research establishment to discover it. If you
read much on the sociology of scientific publication, you will find talk
of inward-looking, mutual admiration societies, which control access to
so-called "major" journals. So looking for "journal quality" alone can
be an uncertain guide.

Sincerely, Donald Forsdyke. Discussion Leader. Bionet.journals.note 


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