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Citation analysis cannot legitimate the strategic selection of excellence

Tobias Opthof, Loet Leydesdorff

Abstract: In reaction to a previous critique (Opthof & Leydesdorff, 2010),
the Center for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) in Leiden proposed to
change their old "crown" indicator in citation analysis into a new one.
Waltman et al. (2010) argue that this change does not affect rankings at
various aggregated levels. However, CWTS data is not publicly available for
testing and criticism. In this correspondence, we use previously published
data of Van Raan (2006) to address the pivotal issue of how the results of
citation analysis correlate with the results of peer review. A quality
parameter based on peer review was neither significantly correlated with the
two parameters developed by the CWTS in the past (CPP/JCSm or CPP/FCSm) nor
with the more recently proposed h-index (Hirsch, 2005). Given the high
correlations between the old and new "crown" indicators, one can expect that
the lack of correlation with the peer-review based quality indicator applies
equally to the newly developed ones. 

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** apologies for cross-postings
Loet Leydesdorff 
Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR), 
Kloveniersburgwal 48, 1012 CX Amsterdam. 
Tel.: +31-20- 525 6598; fax: +31-842239111
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