Effective publication strategies in Clinical Research

By Bertil F. Dorch, Charlotte Wien, Daniella Bayle Deutz*, Dorte Drongstrup, Evgenios Vlachos

Researchers are increasingly being assessed by the height of their h-index, h. To guide researchers on the publication strategies most likely to lead to an improvement in h, we analyzed the research output of the Department of Clinical Research at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU). Our aim is to investigate the importance of the following seven variables in their academic careers: h-index, number of publications, number of citations, international collaborations, local collaborations, field specific journal publishing and high journal impact factor journal publishing. Two groups of researchers were distinguished by the degree of efficiency, a as defined by Hirsch. We interviewed 9 researchers with the lowest and highest values for a to uncover differences in their preferred publication strategies. Our results indicate that two separate groups can be established. Researchers with Low a, who prefer local and institutional collaborations, disseminate knowledge in local media and publish in field specific journals, and researchers with High a, who prefer international collaborations, invest significant time in publishing in the highest impact journals in their field, and acquire a greater number of citations. Both publication strategies can lead to a successful academic career, yet we have an indication through the h5-index that the practices of the High a group are more likely to nudge the overall h-index.

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