Paper published: Journal Rankings in Management and Business Studies

“What rules do we play by?” is the question we’ve followed in our bibliometric study which has just been published in the renowned journal Research Policy. Given the growing importance of journal rankings in academic performance management, it is relevant to researchers and managers alike whether there are certain characteristics of publications that are more prevalent the higher a journal is ranked. Our paper examines how tangible and adaptable characteristics of papers vary between different rating categories of journals and what the drivers of publication in journals at the top of rankings are. We build on a bibliometric analysis of more than 85,000 papers published in 168 management and business journals as rated in 18 popular journal rankings. Results refute some often repeated but rarely substantiated criticisms of journal rankings. Contrary to many voices, we find that interdisciplinarity and innovativeness are positively associated with publication in highly ranked journals. In other respects, our results support more critical assumptions, such as a widespread preference for quantitative methods. By providing more evidence on the implicit standards of journal rankings, this study expands on the understanding of what intended or unintended incentives they provide and how to use them responsibly.

Access the study here: Vogel, R., Hattke, F. & Petersen, J. (2017): Journal Rankings in Management and Business Studies: What Rules Do We Play By? In: Research Policy 45(10), 1707-1722.

Congratulations Dr. Jessica Petersen!!!

We are very happy to anounce that IndiKon team member Jessica Petersen successfully completed her PhD thesis with the defense.  The Hamburg-based IndiKon team members and other colleagues enjoyed an amazing and very interesting presentation about “Evaluation of innovation performance in research: Between output and peer control”.  Jessica even inspired the part of the audience that was not connected to the research topic before.

Congratulations and all the best for the future career, Jessica!!!

11th International Research Workshop: Methods for PhD

Last call for applications for the 11th International Research Workshop “Methods for PhD” in Flensburg/Sankelmark (Germany) and Kolding (Denmark). The workshop takes place on September 10-15 and offers a wide range of courses, among them grounded theory, panel data analyses, statistical analyses with R, and academic writing. Find the full program and contact information here or on this weblog.

Paper published: How innovative are editors?

The results of an international web-based survey on journal editors in four disciplines were published in Research Evaluation. The article is titled “How innovative are editors?: evidence across journals and disciplines”. Journal editors play a crucial role in the scientific publication system, as they make the final decision on acceptance or rejection of manuscripts. Some critics, however, suspect that the more innovative a manuscript is, the less likely it will be accepted for publication. Especially top-tier journals are accused of rejecting innovative research. As evidence is only anecdotal, this article empirically examines the demand side for innovative research manuscripts. I assess journal editors’ innovativeness, i.e. their general predispositions for innovative research manuscripts. As antecedents to innovativeness, personal and contextual factors are taken into account. I differentiate the concept of innovativeness in research by distinguishing three dimensions: innovativeness in terms of research problems, theoretical approaches, and methodological approaches. Drawing on an international web-based survey, this study is based on responses of 866 journal editors. The article sheds light on editors’ inclination toward accepting different forms of innovative research for publication. Overall, findings indicate that individual characteristics, such as editorial risk-taking or long-term orientation, are more decisive than journal-related characteristics regarding innovativeness. However, editors of older journals turn out to be less open toward new research problems and a u-shaped relationship between a journal’s rating score and editor’s willingness to adopt new theoretical approaches exists. Most surprisingly, editors’ consensus orientation regarding reviewer recommendations is positively associated with methodological innovativeness.

Access the study here: Petersen, J. (2017). How innovative are editors?: evidence across journals and disciplines. Research Evaluation, 26(3), 256-268.

The Science of Academic Success

I just came across this beautiful website on which Northeastern University’s Barabasi Lab created an interactive visualization of Roberta Sinatra and colleagues’ paper “Quantifying the Evolution of Individual Scientific Impact”. The paper argues that scientists’ most impactful publications (as measured by citations) could occur at any point in their career. The authors base their argument on a large-scale bibliographic dataset containing publications of more than 10,000 scientists in different disciplines.





The visualization looks like a life-line for an individual scientist’s work (picture on the left) or an ocean with wave peaks and valleys for whole disciplines (picture on the right). It is striking how the overall disciplinary patterns look very similar – at least when they are corrected for absolute citation counts. The authors found that impact is randomly distributed within a scientist’s career. So, if you haven’t published an impactful paper yet, don’t give up – it might just be the next one.

Find the article here: Sinatra, R., Wang, D., Deville, P., Song, C., & Barabási, A. L. (2016). Quantifying the evolution of individual scientific impact. Science, 354(6312), aaf5239.

Pictures are screenshots from the website:

There’s also a short clip about the project on youtube:

Workshop: Quantitative Methods in Higher Education Research

The LEAD Graduate School & Research Network at Eberhard Karls University Tübingen (Nicole Tieben) and the Division of Empirical Educational and Higher Education Research at the Freie Universität Berlin (Martin Neugebauer) invite interested higher education researchers to apply for a two-day workshop in propensity score matching and event history modeling in higher education research.

The workshop takes place on 14-15 September 2017 at the Free University Berlin. The application deadline is July 27th, 2017. The workshop is funded by the BMBF. Visit the hompage for more information.

Paper published: Editorial governance and journal impact

Scientometrics published our article Editorial governance and journal impact: a study of management and business journals. It examines how characteristics of editors, in particular the diversity of editorial teams, are related to journal impact. Our sample comprises 2244 editors who were affiliated with 645 volumes of 138 business and management journals. Results show that multiple editorships and editors’ affiliation to institutions of high reputation are positively related to journal impact, while the length of editors’ terms is negatively associated with impact scores. Surprisingly, we find that diversity of editorial teams in terms of gender and nationality is largely unrelated to journal impact. Our study extends the scarce knowledge on editorial teams and their relevance to journal impact by integrating different strands of literature and studying several demographic factors simultaneously.

Access the study here: Petersen, J., Hattke, F. & Vogel, R. (2017): Editorial governance and journal impact: a study of management and business journals. Scientometrics (online first).

Job openings @ WHU Vienna

The Institute for Higher Education Management at the Vienna University of Economics and Business (Prof. Dr. Barbara Sporn) is currently inviting applications for a fulltime Assistant Professor, non-tenure track position (post-doc) or two 30 hours/week Teaching and Research Associate positions (pre-doc). These employee positions will be limited to a period of 6 years, starting on June 1, 2017 (commencement date subject to change).

Application materials can be submitted online until May 24, 2017.

Find more information here or visit

CfP: 2017 EFMD Higher Education Research Conference

This year’s EFMD Higher Education research conference will take place on 23-24 October 2017 in Leuven, Belgium. It will be hosted by KU Leuven.

EFMD welcomes and encourages submissions of research work within the following three areas of academic enquiry:

  • Track 1: Interdisciplinarity and the challenges for governance, incentive structures, faculty management, and autonomy/organisation of business schools and HEIs in general
  • Track 2: Interdisciplinarity and its impact in management education and research
  • Track 3: Innovations in management education and research
  • EFMD-EDAMBA Track 4: We have a special EFMD-EDAMBA track for PhDs this year. EDAMBA is the European Doctoral Association in Management and Business Administration

Outline papers can be submitted until 30 April 2017.

Fur further informations take a look at the HERC2017_Call_4_Papers.

Call for applications: PhD Students at the Graduate School „Science and Society“

The Graduate School of the interdisciplinary Leibniz Center Science and Society (LCSS) at the Leibniz Universität Hannover is searching for PhD candidates who want to earn a PhD in the field of Science Studies or Higher Education Research. The Graduate School is cooperating closely with the German Centre for Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW). The LCSS Graduate School invites interested candidates to apply for one of six funded PhD positions (E13 65% for 36 months). The positions start on October 1st, 2017. Deadline for applications is on June 3rd 2017. For more information, see the call for applications in German or the call for applications in English.

Cfp – Annual Consortium of Higher Education Researchers

Dear all

Please find attached a quite interesting CfP organised by the Higher Education Studies Team (HIEST) at the Finnish Institute for Educational Research in cooperation with CHER.

The topic is on universities as political institution – HEIs in the middle of academic, economic and social pressures. The conference will focus on multiple and often complex relations and relationships internal and external to higher education institutions.The conference aims to open up fresh perspectives to HEIs as political institutions consisting of a variety of conflicting definitions and practices on how to organise, plan, and implement academic and managerial decisions and processes.

The conference tracks will include the following: academic work and workers; leadership and management; teaching and learning; students – admission, experience and outcomes; HEIs in society.

Abstract submission and more information on the conference website
The call for proposals is open now, deadline is March 17th.

Summer School on Higher Education

Dear PhD colleagues,

please find attached relevant information on a new relaunched summer school that will take place at the university of Jyväskylä in Finland!
The theme of this year summer school is research ethics and researchers’ social responsibility, understood in the broadest sense. The summer school addresses the big decisions faced by all PhD students in the course of their PhD: how to plan, execute and follow through a research project in an ethical manner.
The summer school provides PhD students an opportunity to present and get feedback on their own research as well as to meet senior researchers and other PhD students from the field of higher education research. The format of the summer school is based on students presenting their own papers, commenting on papers by other students and receiving feedback also from senior colleagues.

The deadline for the applications is 31st March 2017
Applicants will be notified of acceptance by 2nd of May 2017
The participants are asked to submit the full papers (3-5 pages) by 1st of August 2017
Time: 30th – 31st of August, 2017

For further information, please follow the link

Best Paper Award. Congratulations to our IndiKon team member Isabel!

Isabel Bögner received the best paper award of the 19th Workshop Scientific Commission Higher Education Management, which took place on 21.& 22. February 2016 at the Helmut Schmidt University Hamburg. The paper with the title “Research puppies (un)chained – How the socialization of doctoral students contributes to the institutional stability of output-related performance indicators in academia.” illustrates how the relevance of output-related performance indicators influences the behavior of and cognitions of doctoral students and how these behaviors and cognitions in turn lead to the institutional stability of output-related performance indicators in academia. The award ceremony was the ending of an interesting and inspiring workshop.

„Review the scientific review process“

Peer review is the central mechanism to verify the quality of scientific manuscripts. According to the internet platform SciRev, peer review processes are often lengthy, which delays the distribution of valuable, novel knowledge within the scientific community. To streamline this phase in scientfic knowledge dissemination, SciRev aims to increase transparency of scientific review processes across journals. Therefore, researchers are invited to evaluate their review experience with a journal based on various characteristics, such as duration of review rounds or rejection time or overall satisfaction with the review process. The information provided is aggregated into scores, which feed into a comprehensive database, so that journals become comparable.


Ultimately, researchers can search for journals with an efficient peer review procedure and benefit from timely publication while journal editors have the opportunity to compare their journal’s performance with that of others.

Check out the website to contribute to the database or benefit from your peers’ journal review experiences.

CfP: EFMD Higher Education Research Conference 2017

From 23-24 October this year’s EFMD Higher Education Research Conference will take place  in Leuven, Belgium.The conference will focus on “Impact and interdisciplinarity in management education and research”.

The three tracks of the conference will be:

Track 1: Interdisciplinarity and the challenges for governance, incentive structures, faculty management, and autonomy/organisation of business schools and HEIs in general
Track 2: Interdisciplinarity and its impact in management education and research
Track 3: Innovations in management education and research.

Outline papers of around 2000 words dealing with the conferences topics can be submitted until 30 April 2017. Further information can be found  in the Call for papers.

Program and Registration: Workshop Higher Education Management

The scientific commission higher education management (WK HSM) has released the program of this year’s annual workshop. The main theme is about third party funding. Other topics include performance management, young scholars, and university governance. Our team contributes two papers to the workshop. Isabel Boegner’s paper on socialization of doctoral students and Rick’s and mine on performance indicators in academia. Follow the links to find the full program and registration form.

Paper published: Open post-publication-peer-review

Together with other selected contributions from the last workshop higher education management, the German journal “Hochschulmanagement” (higher education management) published our paper “Open post-publication-peer-review: an alternative to double-blind reviews in academic journals?”.

The study contributes to the  discussion about alternative forms of scientific communication by evaluating the actual dissemination as well as the potential use of open post-publication-peer-review (OPR). The study is based on survey data with a sample of 2.800 authors of academic papers. Results show that only one third of respondents believe that OPR is useful for enhancing the operative reliability of review processes. The advantages of OPR discussed in the literature are only relevant for the general willingness of authors to publish with OPR in principal. However, when it comes to actual publication decisions (open vs. blind peer review), these potential advantages are only of minor importance for the selection of an appropriate journal (with the exception of heterodox research which indeed seems to benefit from OPR). Instead, the choice between the different channels of scientific communication is based on institutionalized aspects (legitimacy, quality, design of the systems) and behavioral considerations (expected negative group dynamics and increased workload of OPR). Within the limitations of our dataset, we conclude that the current potential of OPR to solve the problems of traditional double-blind proesses is limited.

Bögner, I. & Hattke, F. (2016): Open Post-Publication-Peer-Review: Eine Alternative zur doppelt-blinden Begutachtung in Fachzeitschriften? In: HM – Hochschulmanagement 11(3), 69-74.

Call for Papers „Leistungsbewertung in der Wissenschaft – Perspektiven aus Forschung, Praxis und Politik“

On the 25th & 26th of January 2017 the conference „Leistungsbewertung in der Wissenschaft – Perspektiven aus Forschung, Praxis und Politik“ takes place at the Vorhoelzer Forum of the TU Munich.

Participants of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research funding line „Leistungsbewertung in der Wissenschaft“ will present results of their research projects. Scholars who are not part of the funding line can also submit presentations about research on topics like performance indicators, or digitalization and performance measurement. Keynotes will be held by Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Bruno Frey, Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Margit Osterloh, Prof. Dr. Stefan Kühl, Dr. Ulrich Schreiterer and Prof. Dr. Birgitta Wolff.

Abstracts (max. 1000 words) can be submitted until December 9th to For further informations take a look at the call for papers.

CfP: WK Higher Education Management @ HSU

We’re co-hosting the upcoming conference of the Scientific Commission Higher Education Management (Wissenschaftliche Kommission Hochschulmanagement im VHB) on February 21-22, 2017 at the HSU Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg.

Abstracts (max. 1000 words excluding references) of articles dealing with the management of higher education institutions can be submitted until December 23rd 2016. The main topic is “Third party funding in higher education”. But there is also the possibility to submit papers in other areas of interest, among them:

  • New forms of governance of universities
  • Measurability of research performance
  • Open access, social media, and ctizen science
  • Peer evaluation, performance indicators, and rankings
  • Autonomy of science

For further information see the call for papers (only in German).