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Monday, July 18, 2005

Research on Law Reviews

Brian Leiter (Leiter Reports, 7/15, 2005) brings
our attention to University of San Diego Professor
Thomas Smith's troubling blog post in The Right Coast
about law review citations in Lexis Shepards.

Here's a snippet from his article:

"[My] data concerns law review articles that are in
their [Lexis'] Shepard's database and how much they
get cited. This data covers about 385,000 law review
articles, notes, comments, etc. etc. that appear in 726
law reviews and journals, and looks at how often they
are cited. Cited by other law reviews, or cases. First of
all, 43 percent of the articles are not cited ... Almost 80
percent (i.e. 79 percent) of law review articles get ten
or fewer citations. So where are all the citations going?
Well, let's look at articles that get more than 100
citations. These are the elite. They make up less than
1 percent of all articles, .898 percent to be precise.
... 96 percent of all citations to law review articles."

You can read more at on The Right Coast blog.