Methodology for identifying highly-cited researchers

13 December 2012

Browse Tips has been updated to incorporate changes to the institutional affiliations requested by researchers. is an archive of archive the list of researchers on

Thomson Reuters is also announcing a revision to the process to identify Highly Cited Researchers, to make the Highly Cited Researcher methodology consistent with Essential Science Indicators process, and to respond to community feedback on the output of the Highly Cited Researcher process vetted and published in 2012. The project team received a lot of feedback from the scholarly community about the results published in December 2012 and January 2013. Researchers, bibliometricians, and administrators pointed out that while the methodology accounted for variances in citation patterns across fields, the approach, normalizing at both broad and narrow subject levels, omitted many prominent scientists and so did not adequately represent a robust listing of leading researchers.

The Highly Cited Researcher process identifies influential researchers as those who have contributed to a significant number of the most highly cited publications in a field. Now aligned with the Essential Science Indicators (ESI) process to identify the most highly cited research from the past decade, Highly Cited Researchers will list the authors who have contributed to the greatest number of highly cited papers in the ESI categories of research.

Thomson Reuters will be validating the list of researchers to account for name variants, feedback already provided and to identify current affiliations.

Thomson Reuters is grateful to members of the research community for their input and advice. Our project team is confident that our new results will be credible and useful but we wish to extend our invitation for comments on our data. No procedure is wholly free from error so we stand ready to address concerns and questions from our partners in the research community.