Your h-index on Publons is calculated using citation data from Web of Science Core Collection, based on the publications you have imported to Publons.  Only Core Collection publications and citations (including self-citations) are included in the h-index calculation on Publons. 


Displaying the h-index on your profile is optional

You can change the h-index visibility setting at any time from your profile settings. (Note it will still be visible to you alone on your private dashboard.)

Use the h-index responsibly

The h-index’s popularity as a bibliometric indicator is because it is simple to calculate and combines measures of productivity (number of published articles) and impact (number of citations) in one index. When used alongside other measures, it can quickly indicate how citations are distributed over a researcher’s publications.

This popularity has led to misuse — particularly when it is treated as proof of productivity and impact, rather than a potential indicator of productivity and impact. Due to differences in publication and citation behaviour between fields (even closely-related fields) and because the h-index does not control for career-stage, it is unwise to draw any serious conclusions from h-index comparisons between researchers.

At Publons we are aware that many researchers and institutions use the h-index, while others prefer not to because of the tendency for it to be misused. Accordingly, we have made it optional for researchers to display their Web of Science h-index on their Publons profile and encourage researchers to become familiar with the scope and limitations of the h-index as an indicator.


About the h-index

The h-index (also known as Hirsch index) was introduced by J. Hirsch in 2005 and can be defined as follows: A researcher has an h-index, if they have at least h publications for which they have received at least h citations. For example, Researcher A has an h-index = 13 if they have published at least 13 documents for which they have received at least 13 citations.


See the attached "Indicators handbook" for more information on how the h-index is calculated, and how it should/should not be used.