Physical Review: From the Periphery to the Center of Physics

  • Mahdi Khelfaoui
  • Yves GingrasEmail author


In this paper, we analyze in a quantitative manner the changing position of Physical Review in the global field of physics, compared to other important physics journals, since the beginning of the twentieth century. This approach complements existing intellectual and institutional accounts of Physical Review’s historical evolution and offers a dynamical portrait of the global landscape of physics journals, based on a bibliometric analysis of the relations between journals obtained through co-citation analysis. The co-citation networks constructed for successive twenty-year periods provide a measure of the rising position of Physical Review from the periphery to the center of physics. The intellectual content of the journal, with its evolving topics and most influential authors, is also analyzed using the bibliographical references contained in all its articles.


Physical Review physics journals rise of American physics bibliometrics co-citation networks 



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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Département d’histoireUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontréalCanada
  2. 2.Centre interuniversitaire de recherche sur la science et la technologieUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontréalCanada

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