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Research Impact

This guide outlines the resources and support available for ACU researchers to track their research impact.

Research impact

The Australian Research Council (ARC) defines research impact as “the demonstrable contribution that research makes to the economy, society, culture, national security, public policy or services, health, the environment, or quality of life, beyond contributions to academia”.

Why is it important?
It is important that researchers know their impact as it can help:

  • justify requests for grants and other funding; 
  • quantify, and determine how their research is being used;
  • identify other researchers or institutions that are using their work; and
  • identify other researchers, and potential collaborators, in their field
  • support applications for tenure or promotion; 

ACU Research Bank

 Research Bank is ACU's institutional research repository. It serves to collect, preserve, and showcase the research publications and outputs of ACU staff and higher degree students. Where possible and permissible, a full text version of a research output is available as open access.

Why deposit your research publications in ACU Research Bank?

  • To increase access - all Research Bank entries are discoverable using Google Scholar
  • To increase research impact - when your work reaches a wider audience, it can often lead to an increase in citations and other impact measures
  • To keep track of your work - have access to all of your research outputs wherever you are
  • For HERDC reporting - Publication data are sourced directly from Research Bank
  • For ERA reporting - Publication data for the ACU ERA submission is sourced from Research Bank

Need some help?

Contact your Librarian - they can assist you.

Common metrics

The most commonly used measurements include journal based metrics and citation metrics.  In addition, there are a number of researcher identity schemes which aim to provide consistent identifiers for authors and ensure that attribution is correctly assigned when work is cited.

Common citation metrics Common journal metrics
Total number of publications (researcher)      Journal Impact Factor. Search in Journal Citation Reports.
Total number of citations Source normalised impact per paper (SNIP). Available in the Scopus database. Use the Compare Journals Tool.
Citations per paper (cpp) SCImago Journal Rank (SJR). Available in the Scopus database. Use the Compare Journals Tool.
Hersch's h-index  Eigenfactor and Article Influence Score
Percentage of papers cited  

There is no one ideal tool for tracking research. All tools have their limitations.  Peer review is also important. Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA), for example, acknowledges that in some disciplines peer review rather than citation analysis is the preferred means of assessing research.