Skip to content


You're viewing the new version of our site. Please leave us feedback.

Learn more

BioMed Central and impact

We’re proud of the impact our journals have - from citations to social media shares; from advancing discovery within individual disciplines to affecting public discourse and policymaking. On this page you can find some information and resources on BioMed Central journals' metrics and impact.

San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment

New Content ItemBioMed Central has become a signatory of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), the commitment to move away from a single measure of a journal’s impact (Impact Factor) to the provision of a wider set of metrics and measurements. BioMed Central has been compliant with the majority of DORA recommendations for some time, and a commitment to reducing emphasis on Impact Factor is the final step in enacting DORA practices in research assessment. We are committed to the following recommendations:

  • Greatly reduce emphasis on the journal impact factor as a promotional tool, ideally by ceasing to promote the impact factor or by presenting the metric in the context of a variety of journal-based metrics that provide a richer view of journal performance.
  • Make available a range of article-level metrics to encourage a shift toward assessment based on the scientific content of an article rather than publication metrics of the journal in which it was published.
  • Encourage responsible authorship practices and the provision of information about the specific contributions of each author.

Find out what the entire declaration that means here.  

Our journals' research impact

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​New Content Item

Download this infographic and share to your peers.

Your guide to alternative Journal Metrics

A number of journal ranking metrics have emerged over the last years in an effort to broaden the evaluation of scholarly journals. This list is a brief introduction to some of the more popular metrics.

  • 5 year Impact Factor: In 2009 Thomson Reuters for the first time released the new 5-year journal Impact Factor in addition to the standard 2-year journal Impact Factor . The 5-year journal Impact Factor is the average number of times articles from the journal published in the past five years have been cited in the JCR (Journal Citation Report) year. It is calculated by dividing the number of citations in the JCR year by the total number of articles published in the five previous years. The controversy around the Impact Factor tradition has not been able to deter the Impact Factor from rising to the most important quality assessment tool in scientific journal publishing. It has to be noted that the value of the Impact Factor cannot be compared among different scientific disciplines. For instance Microbiology journals have, on average, much higher Impact Factors than Mathematics or Engineering journals. The citation patterns in these disciplines are entirely different, therefore the numerical values of their Impact Factors also differ significantly and comparisons would not yield appropriate results.
  • Eigenfactor: Similar to the 5-Year Journal Impact Factor, but weeds out journal self-citations. The citation frequency as well as the prestige of the journals is taken into account. The type of publication and the citation patterns of different disciplines are not considered. Covers over 12,000 journals worldwide, including Open Access journals and over 150,000 conference proceedings. The Eigenfactor only uses data from journals indexed by Thomson Reuters. Learn more about the Eigenfactor.
  • Google Scholar Metrics: Google Scholar Metrics summarize recent citations to many publications. You can browse the top 100 publications in several languages, ordered by their five-year h-index and h-median metrics.Scholar Metrics currently cover articles published between 2007 and 2011 (both years included). More information about Google Scholar Metrics.
  • SJR - SCImago Journal & Country Rank: It includes the journals and country specific indicators developed from the information contained in the Scopus® database from 1996. This metric doesn't consider all citations of equal weight; the prestige of the citing journal is taken into account.In general, self-citations are not included in the calculation. More information about SJR.
  • SNIP - Source-Normalized Impact per Paper: SNIP measures a source’s contextual citation impact by weighing citations based on the total number of citations in a subject field. It helps to make a direct comparison of sources in different subject fields.SNIP especially considers the frequency at which authors cite other papers in their reference lists, the speed at which citation impact matures and the extent to which the database used in the assessment covers the field’s literature. More information about SNIP.

Other metrics include:

  • Mean number of days from submission of the manuscript to first decision
  • Mean number of days from acceptance at publisher to published online
  • Total number of downloads for HTML Full-text articles
  • Usage factor for journals, which is the median value of full-text article usage data (i.e. the number of successful full text article requests) for a specified usage period of articles published in a journal during a specified publication period.)
  • Number of articles discussed via social media platforms

Read our articles on research metrics

Sign up to Article Alerts

Interested in a specific journal? Sign up to article alerts and get the latest articles straight to your inbox.

Discover our free open access funding support

Did you know that we offer a free support service to make it easier to discover and apply for article-processing charge (APC) funding? 

We can provide personalized advice on OA funds that may be available to you, advice about compliance with your funder - and much more!

Read more

Institutional Membership

Visit the membership page to check if your institution is a member and learn how you could save on article-processing charges (APCs).