Paul L. Caron
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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Anderson: Google Scholar 2018 Law Review Rankings

Google Scholar (2015)Following up on my previous post, 2018 Meta-Ranking Of Flagship U.S. Law Reviews:  Rob Anderson (Pepperdine), Google Scholar Metrics 2018 Law Review Rankings:

Google Scholar has released its 2018 Scholar Metrics data, and the new law review rankings are available here. I have published these rankings for law reviews for most of the past several years, although they have often stimulated some controversy

This year, I decided to compare the Scholar Metrics results with the widely used Washington and Lee law review rankings. ...

Note that you can click the hyperlinked numbers in the “Google h5-index” column to see the most cited articles published in the last five years for each journal.

Rank

Journal

Google h5-index

Google h-median

Google Avg

W&L Combined

W&L Journals

1

Harvard 

45

76

60.5

100

6240

2

Yale 

45

67

56

94.7

5539

3

Columbia 

34

61

47.5

78.6

4260

4

Pennsylvania

34

60

47

74.8

4204

5

Stanford

36

56

46

73.2

4005

6

L. & Hum. Behavior

34

48

41

7.2

394

7

Georgetown

31

49

40

77.6

4223

8

California

27

53

40

60.3

3269

9

Cornell

31

48

39.5

60.1

3030

10

Am. J. Int'l L.

26

53

39.5

24.2

1490

11

Texas

29

49

39

61.7

3646

12

Fordham

31

46

38.5

61.4

3661

13

NYU

31

44

37.5

63

3277

14

Virginia

29

46

37.5

55.4

3174

15

J. L., Med. & Ethics

32

40

36

11.3

700

16

UCLA

29

41

35

60.5

3256

17

Minnesota

28

41

34.5

62.8

3376

18

University of Chicago

31

38

34.5

48.9

2873

19

J. L. & Econ.

25

43

34

8.8

462

20

Iowa

29

38

33.5

60.6

3229

21

Vanderbilt

25

41

33

52.6

2842

22

Harv. J.L. & Pub. Pol'y

23

41

32

33.7

1798

23

Duke

26

37

31.5

60.1

3030

24

Michigan

28

34

31

69

3540

25

Boston University

26

35

30.5

52.2

2997

Rob Anderson (Pepperdine), 2018 Law Review Rankings from Google Scholar Metrics:

The two measures tracked one another quite well, which is perhaps not surprising as both are based on citations. However, the Google Scholar data reveals some  blind spots in the Washington and Lee rankings. As the latter are based on citations from law reviews, they tend to discount some elite "law and" or "interdisciplinary" journals. Thus, the Journal of Legal Studies, Law & Society Review, Law & Social Inquiry, The Journal of Law & Economics, and the American Journal of International Law, appear only average in the W&L rankings. In fact, however, most of these are considered very selective journals. Of the flagship law reviews, only the University of Chicago Law Review has a similar pattern, but not as extreme. 

Although faculty who publish in the relevant fields know the reputation of these journals well, I have often heard them compared by generalist faculty unfavorably to even average flagship law reviews. I hope this data helps to curb the blind spots that we can all have for specialty journals outside our areas of expertise.

In my own area of empirical legal studies, I find it notable that the upstart Journal of Empirical Legal Studies has finally caught (and perhaps even passed, depending on which measure is used) the Journal of Legal Studies, which has long served as a standard-bearer for empirical and law & economics work.

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2018/08/anderson-google-scholar-2018-law-review-rankings.html

Law School Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

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