What is an H-index?

February 08, 2017

The h-index is a citation index that attempts to measure both the productivity and impact of the published work of a scientist or scholar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H-index).

Although there are many different yardsticks for measuring research productivity in Management Information Systems (MIS), the h-index is a metric that deserves attention due to its academic basis, simplicity, and wide acceptance in other major scientific disciplines.

Several other scientific fields have included the h-index of productive scholars in their disciplines such as “The h index for Computer Science” and, for economists, the h-index provided on the IDEAS website and database.

The h-index was suggested by Jorge E. Hirsch, a physicist at UCSD, as a tool for determining theoretical physicists' relative quality (Hirsch, 2005).

A scholar with an index of “h” has published “h” papers each of which has been cited by others at least “h” times. The h-index is intended to measure simultaneously the quality and sustainability of scientific output, as well as, to some extent, the diversity of scientific research.

Based on an initial list of about 400 senior scholars, a PHP program was developed to automatically query Google Scholar and compute the h-index for each scholar. This list will show professors and researchers in the MIS field who each has an h-index of 20 or higher according to Google Scholar.

The MIS department at the University of Arizona, Eller College is very well represented on the MIS h-list and include

  • Hsinchun Chen (H-Index of 88)
  • Jay F. Nunamaker, Jr. (H-Index of 64)
  • Joseph S. Valacich (H-Index of 64)
  • Sudha Ram (H-Index of 35)

View the entire list here.