While the question of what makes a journal impactful continues to draw scholarly attention and debate, the lack of conceptual foundation as to what journal impact represents, and how it manifests itself, has impeded efforts to establish a richer understanding. Drawing from the theory of innovation diffusion, we propose journal impact as a multidimensional concept manifested most prominently in the magnitude, prestige, breadth, dispersion, and duration dynamics of citations accruing to a journal. In doing so, we complement extant representations of journal impact as a unidimensional concept with insights into the pattern and profile of a journal impact across space and time. We illustrate the multidimensionality of journal impact as a diffusion process in a longitudinal analysis of citation patterns at the Journal of Management Studies over a 40-year period.

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doi.org/10.1111/joms.12007, hdl.handle.net/1765/69008
ERIM Top-Core Articles
Journal of Management Studies
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Simsek, Z., Heavey, C., & Jansen, J. (2013). Journal impact as a diffusion process: A conceptualization and the case of the journal of management studies. Journal of Management Studies, 50(8), 1374–1407. doi:10.1111/joms.12007