Why do statistics journals have low impact factors?

Erjen van Nierop*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we answer the question why statistics journals get lower impact factors than journals in other disciplines. We analyze diffusion patterns of papers in several journals in various academic fields. To obtain insights into the diffusion of the citation counts of the papers, the data are analysed with the Bass model, leading to values for the time-to-peak that can be used to compare the speeds of diffusion paper citations of the different disciplines. Estimation results show that for statistics journals, it takes significantly more years to reach their peak. To further investigate diffusion, we also compute the percentages of the total number of citations a paper has after 2 or 3 years. Again, it appears that statistics journals have slower citation diffusion than journals in other disciplines. We conclude with some suggestions to reduce this disparity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-62
Number of pages11
JournalStatistica Neerlandica
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb-2009


  • Impact factors
  • citations
  • diffusion models

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