On the prevalence and scientific impact of duplicate publications in different scientific fields (1980-2007)

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The issue of duplicate publications has received a lot of attention in the medical literature, but much less in the information science community. This paper aims at analyzing the prevalence and scientific impact of duplicate publications across all fields of research between 1980 and 2007, using a definition of duplicate papers based on their metadata. It shows that in all fields combined, the prevalence of duplicates is one out of two-thousand papers, but is higher in the natural and medical sciences than in the social sciences and humanities. A very high proportion (>85%) of these papers are published the same year or one year apart, which suggest that most duplicate papers were submitted simultaneously. Furthermore, duplicate papers are generally published in journals with impact factors below the average of their field and obtain a lower number of citations. This paper provides clear evidence that the prevalence of duplicate papers is low and, more importantly, that the scientific impact of such papers is below average. Comment: 13 pages, 7 figures

This content has been updated on June 2nd, 2017 at 13 h 46 min.