Vol. 15 No. 1 (2024)

Citation metrics and strategic mutations of scientific research: narratives and evidence

Luca Guerra
University of Brescia

Published 2024-01-15


  • Scientific misconducts,
  • Gaming metrics,
  • Scholarly communication,
  • Research assesment,
  • Bibliometrics.

How to Cite

Guerra, Luca. 2024. “Citation Metrics and Strategic Mutations of Scientific Research: Narratives and Evidence”. JLIS.It 15 (1):144-58. https://doi.org/10.36253/jlis.it-538.


Following the diffusion of the management model promoted by the New Public Management also within universities, sectors until then endowed with particular protection, such as the academic one, were progressively subjected to new controls and constraints, which gradually took the form of quantitative surveys, with a growing role of citation metrics. These evaluation processes have given rise to various important critical positions at an international level.

If it is true that, according to Goodhart's law, "when a measure becomes an objective it ceases to be a good measure”, it is even more significant to note that when a measure becomes an objective, what is measured ceases to be what it was before. The quantitative measurement of academic performance has in fact triggered forms of gaming such as to alter the very game of scientific research, its purposes and the forms of its sharing. In the article we will carry out a comparison between the forms of mutation and the narratives that accompany them to see to what extent we are legitimate today to talk about the transformation of scientific research into strategic scientific research.


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