Musings on Accounting Research by Steve

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Monthly Archives: July 2015

MAR – is it a blip or the real thing (BABY)?

MAR or Management Accounting Research in some way is the biggest news in the two year impact factor of the SSCI as far as accounting journals go. It has broken out of the social science ghetto where according to one research study, 80% of SSCI journals have a two year impact factor of less than 1.9.  MAR’s impact factor is a robust 2.125.  Where did MAR come from and how did it break out of the SSCI norms????  Why, if you are an American are you unlikely to have read MAR and likely never seen it cited in the American 3 (at least recent articles)?

Examining MAR’s citation pattern is interesting.  It has, in the last two years, one cite combined in TAR, JAR, CAR, and JAE!  MAR’s claim to fame rests of a series of European based management journals with a strong bit of help from AOS. The Scand. Journal of Management, European Management Review and Accounting and Business Research are the big sources of citation.

This goes to my previous point, as more journals are “admitted” to the SSCI various clusters that would not be apparent in citations dominated by the American 3 and their associates will be seen and will influence the rankings of the journals more and more. But we have seen this before – the rise and crash and now small recovery of RAS is a lesson to those who would celebrate too early.  As recently as 2011 RAS (review of accounting studies) was above the 2 mark and had been for a handful of years starting in the early 2000’s!

Soon, why do we need to move to using the five year impact factor as our gauge (if we use one at all) for seeing the impact of journals.

SSCI – AOS is big winner

One of the key things to realize about the SSCI Impact Factors is that they are based on citations in other journals that are members of the SSCI!!! NOT from all journals. Hence, the history of success of most North American journals is that the senior ones are more likely to be in the SSCI combined with the prevalence of lower impact North American based journals in the SSCI. Worldwide it is both less likely the senior journals are in the SSCI and if they are in the SSCI it is less likely that lower impact journals are also in the SSCI. Both of these factors contribute strongly to the dominance of the American three accounting journals in impact factors.

But recently more and more non-American journals have been joining the SSCI. With that brings a wider diversity of types of research that is reported on and cited in those journals. In particular I note that the Critical Trio as I like to call them (AAAJ, CPA as well as the more centrist AOS) are, effective next year, ALL members of the SSCI. Given the huge number of citations AAAJ and CPA generate for AOS, despite the short term downward drift of AOS in the two year impact factor that looks large on the surface, seems likely to be transitory shock as capital markets folks might say. Note that AAAJ has only be in the SSCI for two years and CPA starts in 2015. Given AOS’s current high 5 year impact factor (still number 2 among all accounting journals) and given the added numbers that will be coming in from AAAJ and CPA over the next three to five years, AOS is definitely a candidate for being the big winner this year.

Tomorrow another likely big winner is discussed!

Holiday week in North America

As Australia and other southern hemisphere folks move into “winter” we in North America just had a week of national (Canada) /nationalistic (USA) holidays. You gotta love the difference between how these two neighbors celebrate. 4th of July is all about Americans are the best in the world whereas Canada Day is all about partying, family and friends. After watching the Canadian parliament hill celebration versus the Washington DC celebration on the old TV it really strikes home as to how different these two countries are along some dimensions.

Hence, the silence last week. Back to normal programing tomorrow with a discussion of SSCI and why AOS might be the big winner this year despite appearances to the contrary!!!

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