2008 Journal Citation Reports figures released

Last Friday Thomson Reuters released the 2008 edition of the Journal Citation Reports. This year it was announced by Thomson itself as a news release, that’s a good move from them. The number of journals reported in the two editions of the JCR have increased from 6417 in the Science edition to 6598 (181 more journals that is) and in Social Sciences edition the number of journals covered increased from 1865 to 1980 (an increase of 115 journals).It is still not the increase I expected on the basis of the addition of some 750 new regional journals which was announced last year, and that figure is now even advertised as an expansion of 1228 journals, but it is still an expansion of 300 journals. Albeit reading Thomson’s press releases on the 2008 JCR update I still notice some juggling with numbers that don’t really add, or don’t make sense after simple investigations when comparing the 2007 and 2008 issues.Now we have to go and figure out which were added, and more important, which journal were dropped. That’s always interesting to find out. It will take time though.The really major improvement Thomson should make, is to abolish the rather odd division between the two parts of the database. Currently I can’t find any arguments to stick to the demarcation lines between the Science edition and the Social Science edition of the JCR. I really wonder how many customers they have that subscribe to only one part of the JCR. I think it is fair to assume that by far most of the customers subscribe to both parts.For teaching it is just a pain, to have to explain students that they should start their search with choosing a database part. That is far from intuitive.

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