Working Paper Ircres-CNR 12/2017                             
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Long time series of highly cited articles: an empirical study

 Ugo Finardi a, b


a CNR-IRCRES, National Research Council, Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth, via Real Collegio 30, Moncalieri (TO) – Italy

b The Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, 315 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M5S 0A7 Canada


 corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



The study of how citations, received by scientific works, evolve with time is a relevant bibliometric topic. The present work aims at describing the evolution of received citations of highly cited scientific articles over a long time span (30 years or more). It tries to answer to the question on how such citation trends evolve, and on how much it is possible to assimilate them to a single model, by performing an empirical descriptive study. Thirty articles (the five most cited for each of the six Subject categories in two Research domains) are taken into account. Once obtained the citation received by the articles, their trends are traced and analysed. The empirical results show that received citations exhibit significantly different trends. Moreover, many articles are not affected by the phenomenon of aging. Such facts make it more difficult to generalize citation trends.



Received citations trends; empirical study; highly cited; long time series.


JEL Codes: I23, O30


DOI: 10.23760/2421-7158.2017.012


How to Cite this Article

Finardi U., 2017. “Long time series of highly cited articles: an empirical study”, Working Paper IRCrES, n. 12, pp. 1-18.





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