Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Journal Rankings for Philosophy

I've received many requests for some kind of journal rankings list from readers of my essay on publishing advice.

Readers will be aware of several different rankings of philosophy journals. These include the Australian Research Council's (ARC) now disused ERA rankings and European Science Foundation's (ESF) European Research Index for the Humanities (ERIH).

Plus, there have been different polls by Brian Leiter and the Brooks Blog (and this more comprehensive poll of 140+ journals). Other blogs discussing journal rankings include Certain DoubtsLemmings, Thoughts, Arguments, and Rants, and this.

Each metric has its limitations and such a discussion would merit a long blogpost of its own. Let me be clear from the beginning that I believe that journal rankings are the crudest of indicators. If you want to assess the quality of something, then read it.

What I propose here is a ranking of rankings. Journals will be grouped in tiers based upon various metrics. There is broad agreement between different lists and I don't believe this list will prove controversial.

The official Brooks Blog Journal Rankings for Philosophy *

[The full rankings can be found here  http://tinyurl.com/philosophyrankings]!]

* Note on rankings:

I have weighted the journals in the following way:

ARC ERA list:
Journals are ranked A*, A, B, C. Points awarded: A* = 5, A = 4, B = 3, C = 2.

Brooks Blog list (1):
Journals ranked 1-50. Points awarded: #1-10 = 5, #11-20 = 4, #21-30 = 3, #31-40 = 2, #41-50 = 1.

List (2) ranks journals 1-50. Points awarded: #1-10 = 5, #11-20 = 4, #21-30 = 3, #31-40 = 2, #41-50 = 1, #51-143 = 0.

ERIH list:
Journals are (now) ranked Int1, Int2, Nat. Points awarded: Int1 = 5, Int2 = 4, Nat = 3.

Leiter Reports list:
General philosophy journals ranked only in top 20. Points awarded: #1-10 = 5, #11-20 = 4. Leiter has an additional list in ethics which raises complications. Journals are not double-counted and keep score if on general list. Points awarded: #1-10 = 5, #11-20 = 4, #21-30 = 3 where journals not on list 1. While this will cover general journals and journals that publish in ethics, there is need for a list in other areas especially mind/language and philosophy of science.

Notes: There are two lists for the Brooks Blog. List 2 is original list and surveys top 143 journals from a broad range. The top 50 in this poll were polled a second time in List 1.

QUERY FOR READERS: Do the weightings seem appropriate? What would you change? What journal rankings would you add?


Prof. Kate said...

"General philosophy journals ranked only in top 20."

Do I understand this?

(Was that an epistemologically impossible question to pose to you?)

The Brooks Blog said...

I believe this refers to the Leiter ranking. A couple dozen journals were entered in a poll and he published the top 20 on his blog. I refer to this top 20. The journal rankings will be announced later today.