Intellectual and social similarity among scholarly journals: an exploratory comparison of the networks of editors, authors and co-citations

by   Alberto Baccini, et al.

This paper explores, by using suitable quantitative techniques, to what extent the intellectual proximity among scholarly journals is also a proximity in terms of social communities gathered around the journals. Three fields are considered: statistics, economics and information and library sciences. Co-citation networks (CC) represent the intellectual proximity among journals. The academic communities around the journals are represented by considering the networks of journals generated by authors writing in more than one journal (interlocking authorship: IA), and the networks generated by scholars sitting in the editorial board of more than one journal (interlocking editorship: IE). For comparing the whole structure of the networks, the dissimilarity matrices are considered. The CC, IE and IA networks appear to be correlated for the three fields. The strongest correlations is between CC and IA for the three fields. Lower and similar correlations are obtained for CC and IE, and for IE and IA. The CC, IE and IA networks are then partitioned in communities. Information and library sciences is the field where communities are more easily detectable, while the most difficult field is economics. The degrees of association among the detected communities show that they are not independent. For all the fields, the strongest association is between CC and IA networks; the minimum level of association is between IE and CC. Overall, these results indicate that the intellectual proximity is also a proximity among authors and among editors of the journals. Thus, the three maps of editorial power, intellectual proximity and authors communities tell similar stories.


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