The iceberg hypothesis revisited

B.S. Lancho-Barrantes, V.P. Guerrero-Bote, F. Moya-Anegón

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A study is described of the rank/JIF (Journal Impact Factor) distributions in the high-coverage Scopus database, using recent data and a three-year citation window. It includes a comparison with an older study of the Journal Citation Report categories and indicators, and a determination of the factors most influencing the distributions. While all the specific subject areas fit a negative logarithmic law fairly well, those with a greater External JIF have distributions with a more sharply defined peak and a longer tail—something like an iceberg. No S-shaped distributions, such as predicted by Egghe, were found. A strong correlation was observed between the knowledge export and import ratios. Finally, data from both Scopus and ISI were used to characterize the rank/JIF distributions by subject area.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443–461
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2010


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