, Volume 85, Issue 2, pp 387–400 | Cite as

What makes a journal international? A case study using conservation biology journals

  • Michael Calver
  • Grant Wardell-Johnson
  • Stuart Bradley
  • Ross Taplin


The qualitative label ‘international journal’ is used widely, including in national research quality assessments. We determined the practicability of analysing internationality quantitatively using 39 conservation biology journals, providing a single numeric index (IIJ) based on 10 variables covering the countries represented in the journals’ editorial boards, authors and authors citing the journals’ papers. A numerical taxonomic analysis refined the interpretation, revealing six categories of journals reflecting distinct international emphases not apparent from simple inspection of the IIJs alone. Categories correlated significantly with journals’ citation impact (measured by the Hirsch index), with their rankings under the Australian Commonwealth’s ‘Excellence in Research for Australia’ and with some countries of publication, but not with listing by ISI Web of Science. The assessments do not reflect on quality, but may aid editors planning distinctive journal profiles, or authors seeking appropriate outlets.


International journal Conservation biology Journal ranking Bibliometrics Citation studies 



American Midland Naturalist


American Museum Novitates


Animal Biodiversity and Conservation


Animal Conservation


Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems


Archives of Nature Conservation and Landscape Research


Biodiversity and Conservation


Biological Conservation


Biological Invasions


Bird Conservation International


Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History


Canadian Field Naturalist


Chelonian Conservation and Biology


Conservation Biology


Conservation Ecology/Ecology and Society


Conservation Genetics


Conservation Science Western Australia


Diversity and Distributions


Ecology, Environment & Conservation


Ecos: a Review of Conservation


Environmental Conservation


Global Change Biology


Japanese Journal of Conservation Ecology


Journal for Nature Conservation (Muzaffarnagar)


Journal of Coastal Conservation


Journal of Insect Conservation


Journal of Natural History


Natural History


Northeastern Naturalist


Pacific Conservation Biology




Polar Biology


Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia


Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales


Revista Chilena de Historia Natural


Science for Conservation


Southeastern Naturalist


Southwestern Naturalist


Western North American Naturalist

Mathematical Subject Classification (2010)




We thank, without implication, Harry Recher, Helmut Abt and an anonymous reviewer for helpful reviews. Chris Dickman sourced editorial details for a journal we could not access readily and staff from the document delivery section of the Murdoch University library located information for titles not held in Western Australia.

Supplementary material

11192_2010_273_MOESM1_ESM.doc (102 kb)
DOC 102 kb


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Calver
    • 1
  • Grant Wardell-Johnson
    • 2
  • Stuart Bradley
    • 1
  • Ross Taplin
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Biological Sciences and BiotechnologyMurdoch UniversityMurdochAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Environment and AgricultureCurtin UniversityPerthAustralia
  3. 3.School of AccountingCurtin UniversityPerthAustralia

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