The effect of academic rank and years in practice on bibliometric profile growth rates among academic neurosurgeons in the New York metropolitan area

Dhruv S. Shankar, Paul J. Chung, Theodore Hannah, Nickolas Dreher, Adam Y. Li, Jennifer B. Dai, Alexander F. Post, Tanvir F. Choudhri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Background: Author-level metrics for assessing academic productivity have a significant impact on career advancement in academia. This study determined if 1-year growth rates in author-level metrics among New York (NY) metropolitan area academic neurosurgeons were associated with academic rank and/or years in practice since graduating residency. Methods: H-index, document number, and citation number were recorded monthly from March 2018 to March 2019 for academic neurosurgeons from eight NY metropolitan area training programs using the Scopus® abstract and citation database. Subjects with a decrease in any metric or an increase of ≥10 for h-index, ≥20 for documents, or ≥150 for citations between time points were excluded from the analysis. Differences in 1-year metric increases between academic ranks (Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Professor) were evaluated using ANOVA with Games-Howell post-hoc test. Differences in 1-year metric increases between Assistant Professors with ≤10 and >10 years in practice were evaluated using two-tailed independent samples t-test. Results: The final analysis included 80 subjects. Citation growth rates were significantly different between the academic ranks (F2,77 = 13.09, p < 0.0001); Assistant Professors and Associate Professors had a significantly higher 1-year increase in citations compared to Professors (p < 0.001 and p = 0.025 respectively). Assistant Professors with ≤10 years in practice had significantly higher 1-year increases in h-index (p = 0.001) and documents (p = 0.016) than those with >10 years in practice. Conclusion: Early-career Assistant Professors in academic neurosurgery may exhibit higher productivity than senior faculty, but this finding is qualified by the presence of significant inaccuracies in Scopus® bibliometric profiles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100615
JournalInterdisciplinary Neurosurgery: Advanced Techniques and Case Management
StatePublished - Mar 2020



  • Academic neurosurgery
  • Academic rank
  • Author-level metrics
  • Career advancement
  • H-index
  • Inaccurate bibliometrics
  • Scopus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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