Events and Meetings of Italian Statistical Society, Advances in Latent Variables - Methods, Models and Applications

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H index: the statistical point of view
Paola Cerchiello, Paolo Giudici

Last modified: 2013-06-14


The measurement of quality of academic research is a rather controversialissue. Recently Hirsch has proposed a measure that has the advantage of summarizingin a single summary statistics all the information that is contained in the citationcounts of each author. From that seminal paper, a huge amount of research has beenlavished, focusing on one hand on the development of correction factors to the Hindex and on the other hand, on the pros and cons of such measure proposing severalpossible alternatives. In the present work, we propose an exact, rather than asymptotic,statistical approach and to achieve this objective we work directly on the twobasic components of the H index: the number of produced papers and the relatedcitation counts vector. Such quantities will be modelled by means of a compoundstochastic distribution, that exploits, rather than eliminate, the variability present inboth the production and the impact dimensions of a scientist’s work.

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