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Trends in citations to books on epidemiological and statistical methods in the biomedical literature.

Porta M, Vandenbroucke JP, Ioannidis JP, Sanz S, Fernandez E, Bhopal R, Morabia A, Victora C, Lopez T - PLoS ONE (2013)

Bottom Line: Educational textbooks, practice-oriented books, books on epidemiological substantive knowledge, and on theory and health policies were much less cited.None of the 25 top-cited books had the theoretical or sociopolitical scope of works by Cochrane, McKeown, Rose, or Morris.Books first published in the 1980s continue to be most influential.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Hospital del Mar Institute of Medical Research (IMIM), Barcelona, CIBER de Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), and School of Medicine, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. mporta@imim.es

ABSTRACT

Background: There are no analyses of citations to books on epidemiological and statistical methods in the biomedical literature. Such analyses may shed light on how concepts and methods changed while biomedical research evolved. Our aim was to analyze the number and time trends of citations received from biomedical articles by books on epidemiological and statistical methods, and related disciplines.

Methods and findings: The data source was the Web of Science. The study books were published between 1957 and 2010. The first year of publication of the citing articles was 1945. We identified 125 books that received at least 25 citations. Books first published in 1980-1989 had the highest total and median number of citations per year. Nine of the 10 most cited texts focused on statistical methods. Hosmer & Lemeshow's Applied logistic regression received the highest number of citations and highest average annual rate. It was followed by books by Fleiss, Armitage, et al., Rothman, et al., and Kalbfleisch and Prentice. Fifth in citations per year was Sackett, et al., Evidence-based medicine. The rise of multivariate methods, clinical epidemiology, or nutritional epidemiology was reflected in the citation trends. Educational textbooks, practice-oriented books, books on epidemiological substantive knowledge, and on theory and health policies were much less cited. None of the 25 top-cited books had the theoretical or sociopolitical scope of works by Cochrane, McKeown, Rose, or Morris.

Conclusions: Books were mainly cited to reference methods. Books first published in the 1980s continue to be most influential. Older books on theory and policies were rooted in societal and general medical concerns, while the most modern books are almost purely on methods.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Citations to 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12,962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14,613 citations).[Footnote: Arrows show the year of publication of all editions of each book. ]
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pone-0061837-g010: Citations to 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12,962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14,613 citations).[Footnote: Arrows show the year of publication of all editions of each book. ]

Mentions: The study aims did not include to assess the scholarly performance or influence of an author. It will hence suffice to illustrate how citations to books may complement other analyses on such performance. For instance, Figure S5 may add to existing views on the influence of the two books by H. Blalock selected for the study: citations peaked in the 1970s, and were still significant in subsequent decades. Another example: a priori both A. Feinstein and D. Sackett had a strong influence on clinical epidemiology and the methodology of clinical research; yet, a complementary perspective is gained when looking at the citations during the past 25 years to the 2 most cited books by Feinstein (1867 citations) and 2 books by Sackett et al. (8148 citations) (Figure 9). The evolution over time of the bibliographic impact of some books is also illustrated by the two graphs contrasting trends in citations received by 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12 962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14 613 citations) (Figure 10). Other examples are given in Figures S6, S7, S8, S9, S10.


Trends in citations to books on epidemiological and statistical methods in the biomedical literature.

Porta M, Vandenbroucke JP, Ioannidis JP, Sanz S, Fernandez E, Bhopal R, Morabia A, Victora C, Lopez T - PLoS ONE (2013)

Citations to 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12,962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14,613 citations).[Footnote: Arrows show the year of publication of all editions of each book. ]
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3646840&req=5

pone-0061837-g010: Citations to 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12,962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14,613 citations).[Footnote: Arrows show the year of publication of all editions of each book. ]
Mentions: The study aims did not include to assess the scholarly performance or influence of an author. It will hence suffice to illustrate how citations to books may complement other analyses on such performance. For instance, Figure S5 may add to existing views on the influence of the two books by H. Blalock selected for the study: citations peaked in the 1970s, and were still significant in subsequent decades. Another example: a priori both A. Feinstein and D. Sackett had a strong influence on clinical epidemiology and the methodology of clinical research; yet, a complementary perspective is gained when looking at the citations during the past 25 years to the 2 most cited books by Feinstein (1867 citations) and 2 books by Sackett et al. (8148 citations) (Figure 9). The evolution over time of the bibliographic impact of some books is also illustrated by the two graphs contrasting trends in citations received by 3 books by K. Rothman et al. (12 962 citations) and 4 books by D. Kleinbaum et al. (14 613 citations) (Figure 10). Other examples are given in Figures S6, S7, S8, S9, S10.

Bottom Line: Educational textbooks, practice-oriented books, books on epidemiological substantive knowledge, and on theory and health policies were much less cited.None of the 25 top-cited books had the theoretical or sociopolitical scope of works by Cochrane, McKeown, Rose, or Morris.Books first published in the 1980s continue to be most influential.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Hospital del Mar Institute of Medical Research (IMIM), Barcelona, CIBER de Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), and School of Medicine, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. mporta@imim.es

ABSTRACT

Background: There are no analyses of citations to books on epidemiological and statistical methods in the biomedical literature. Such analyses may shed light on how concepts and methods changed while biomedical research evolved. Our aim was to analyze the number and time trends of citations received from biomedical articles by books on epidemiological and statistical methods, and related disciplines.

Methods and findings: The data source was the Web of Science. The study books were published between 1957 and 2010. The first year of publication of the citing articles was 1945. We identified 125 books that received at least 25 citations. Books first published in 1980-1989 had the highest total and median number of citations per year. Nine of the 10 most cited texts focused on statistical methods. Hosmer & Lemeshow's Applied logistic regression received the highest number of citations and highest average annual rate. It was followed by books by Fleiss, Armitage, et al., Rothman, et al., and Kalbfleisch and Prentice. Fifth in citations per year was Sackett, et al., Evidence-based medicine. The rise of multivariate methods, clinical epidemiology, or nutritional epidemiology was reflected in the citation trends. Educational textbooks, practice-oriented books, books on epidemiological substantive knowledge, and on theory and health policies were much less cited. None of the 25 top-cited books had the theoretical or sociopolitical scope of works by Cochrane, McKeown, Rose, or Morris.

Conclusions: Books were mainly cited to reference methods. Books first published in the 1980s continue to be most influential. Older books on theory and policies were rooted in societal and general medical concerns, while the most modern books are almost purely on methods.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus