Pros and Cons of the Impact Factor in a Rapidly Changing Digital World


  • Michael McAleer Department of Finance, Asia University, Taiwan; Discipline of Business Analytics, University of Sydney Business School, Australia; Econometric Institute, Erasmus School of Economics, Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands; Department of Economic Analysis and ICAE, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain; Institute of Advanced Studies, Yokohama National University, Japan
  • Judit Oláh Faculty of Economics and Business, Institute of Applied Informatics and Logistics, University of Debrecen
  • József Popp Faculty of Economics and Business, Institute of Sectoral Economics and Methodology, University of Debrecen



Impact Factor, Quality of research, Pros and Cons, Implications, Digital world, Editorial policies, Open access online publishing, SCIE, SSCI.


The purpose and novlty of the paper is to present arguments for and against the use of the Impact Factor (IF) in a rapidly changing digital world. The paper discusses the calculation of IF, as well as the pros and cons of IF. Editorial policies that affect IF are examined, and the merits of open access online publishing are presented. Scientific quality and the IF dilemma are analysed, and alternative measures of impact and quality are evaluated. The San Francisco declaration on research assessment is also discussed.