|Relationships between h index and number of papers, log-transformed # citations for highest-cited publication and the # years since the first publication for 38 plant/ecosystem ecologists|
I knew that I could find people that have been published on papers that were highly cited, but they didn't have a high H-index. That wasn't too hard. Being a coauthor on a highly-cited paper isn't as diagnostic as the number of publications and the number of years cited.
The one relationship that is hard to find outliers for is the number of publications. I couldn't think of anyone that had published a lot of papers that had a low h-index. Tilman is really the only outlier for this. Based on the number of publications he has published, his H-index should be 56 not 86.
Outside of Tilman, when you take into account the number of publications and how long they've been publishing, that's 90% of the variation in H-index. National Academy members (red dots) aren't necessarily higher or lower than non-academy members (P = 0.2). You can find individuals 10 points higher than you expect, which is diagnostic of something, but looking at the individuals that are 10 points too low, I don't think one would denigrate their stature because their h-index was 65 not 75. Still, there might be something to the residuals.
The final equation I get is H index = 3.8 + 0.17*#pubs + 0.54*#yearspublishing. r2 = 0.90.
For what it's worth, my h-index is spot on. I've authored or co-authored 57 papers published in 14 years. That predicts an h-index of 21. Mine is 22.
One thing that is interesting here is that the h-index, at least in my discipline and for almost everyone, really doesn't provide much more information than knowing the number of publications and how long they've been publishing.
Another thing is quantifying what it takes to get to an h-index of 45. Just 160 publications in 25 years is all. Or 150 publications in 30 years, if you can wait a bit longer.
For me, that would be 10 papers a year for the next 11 years.
The H index might not necessarily provide more information for most than how many for how long, but what is represented by an H-index of 45 is pretty impressive.