Across a broad range of disciplines, a factor for many authors in deciding where to publish is the indexing and rankings of their journal of choice, such as the Impact Factor or CiteScore. This post, on the other hand, highlights another set of rankings that were originally created for use in the Business & Management community. These lists have become very important for in this field, but have also expanded over time to include rankings on journals across numerous social sciences, including Economics, Finance, Psychology, Education, Sociology, and other social sciences. Increasingly, they are also regarded as measures of excellence in areas of science, such as Mathematics, Computer Science, Engineering and Technology.
What are the benefits?
Academic departments, such as business schools, use these rankings as a way of measuring the quality and impact of what their faculty produces. Authors use the lists as one way to help them to select what journal to submit their work to.
Many different countries have their own lists that attempt to rank journals and institutions by quality, whereas others use some of the more well-known national lists to create their own versions. As well as this, some countries produce lists of approved journals across every subject: South Africa, Italy and Finland are examples that take this approach.
What are the requirements?
Methodologies vary between lists, but most include an analysis of other metrics, such as Impact Factors and Scopus statistics, as well as consulting with key subject experts, university departments, academic societies and associations. Journals can also make applications for inclusion, or an improvement in ranking, when new iterations of the lists are being put together.
Below are just a few examples of lists to look out for:
- Chartered Association of Business Schools (‘ABS’), UK: journals are given a rank of ‘1’ (lowest) to ‘4*’ (highest). Researchers in many UK institutions are strongly encouraged to publish only in journals ranked ‘3’ and above. The current list was published in 2015 and the next list is currently due for release in the first quarter of 2018.
- Australian Business Deans Council (ABDC), Australia: an interim review was released in 2016 in preparation for a full review to be set out in the foreseeable future. Journals are rated A* (highest) to C (lowest).
- Verband der Hochschullehrer für Betriebswirtschaft (VHB), Germany: the most recent version (2015) is VHB-JOURQUAL 3. Journals are rated A+ (highest) to D (lowest).
- Fondation Nationale pour l’Enseignement de la Gestion des Enterprises (FNEGE), France: last released in 2016, the journals are ranked from 1* (highest) to 4 (lowest).
- Financial Times FT50 Research Rank, UK: the Financial Times newspaper in the UK has created a list of the top 50 journals across Business, Management, Economics and Finance. Publications from authors in these journals are used to inform the FT Research Rank of business schools and their MBA, Online MBA and EMBA programmes.
- UT Dallas Top 100 Business School Research Rankings (‘Dallas List’), USA: updated annually, this uses a list of 24 key journals in Business, Management, Economics and Finance to rank business schools based on their research contributions. There is a North American ranking and worldwide ranking of institutions.
Journal ranking lists have their advocates and their critics; whatever your view on their utility or how they are constructed, they are part of the landscape that determines where research ends up being published and how it is assessed.
For more details about any of these lists, or for information on how to potentially improve your journal's ranking, please contact your Managing Editor.