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Monday, June 26, 2017

Ranking Legal Authors (not just academics): HeinOnline's "ScholarRank’s Top 250 Authors" -- 2017 Data

I teach in a midsize Irish law faculty. Everyone in the department has some sort of regular administrative post. Mine is the department's director of research. As such, I spend some real quality time worrying (and conferring with colleagues) about (relative) journal and faculty metrics. 

Many (perhaps most) American JDs -- current and former -- know about the Washington & Lee rankings for law journals. W&L's user friendly website is here: W&L's rankings do not carry a lot of weight in Europe. Here the focus is more on peer reviewed law journals and journals which are cited in other peer reviewed journals. So European scholars interested in metrics look to the most recent reference of the Australia Research Council ("ARC") which ranked the "top" 1167 law journals worldwide. The ARC rankings were not limited to law; and ranked journals in a greater many fields. (You can find a copy of the most recent ARC rankings here: -- go to the bottom of the page.) The journals were not given individual rankings; rather, they were ranked in broad bands: A*, A, B, and C. The ARC rankings were last updated in 2010; so their continued relevance is capable of doubt. 

Another ranking is Clarviate/InCites' (formerly Thomson Reuters') Journal Citation Reports (JCR). If you have access to Westlaw or other Thomson Reuters products, you may be able to see the JCR rankings for law (and other fields). 

There is also Elsevier/SCOPUS/SCImago's Journal (and country) Rank indicator (“SJR”). As I understand it, the SJR rankings were designed especially to facilitate cross-border rankings among Europe's many linguistic groups and journals. (Scopus website: -- it uses SJR rankings for law and other fields.) 

Heads Up: If you are a law review editor, and you are not ranked by W&L, SJR and/or JCR, then you should apply for a ranking. It is free, and there is no downside (of which I am aware). 

W&L, JCR, SJR, and HeinOnline are all current with 2016 (if not some 2017) data.

I only recently came across HeinOnline's ranking of the top-250 law authors. It is (I believe updated monthly. ( It includes all authors, even if not academics, even if retired -- or dead. It is an interesting list. I have permission from HeinOnline to reproduce their rankings. 

Seth Barrett Tillman, Ranking Legal Authors (not just academics): HeinOnline's "ScholarRank’s Top 250 Authors" -- 2017 Data, New Reform Club (June 26, 2017, 10:14 AM),


Tom Van Dyke said...

SB Tillman vs #110 Geoffrey R. Stone, a militant secularist, is hilarious

I could go on and on and on . . . but here is my favorite, the pièce de résistance . . .

Geoffrey R. Stone, The World of the Framers: A Christian Nation?, 56 UCLA Law
Review 1, 21 (2008) (emphasis added) (quotation marks omitted):

Edward Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire was literally put
to the torch at Harvard because of its uncomplimentary interpretation of
early Christianity.

The trouble with this book-burning story is that it never happened. And if Stone could
believe that late 17th or early 18th century Harvard (!) Congregationalists (!!) and
Unitarians (!!!) had a book burning, then—in my opinion—he has pretty poor
judgment. No doubt, it is a considerable and time-consuming responsibility to review
National Security Agency conduct and policy. I hope that Professor Stone’s new
responsibilities will leave him with sufficient time to check his sources in his future
academic publications.

Seth Barrett Tillman said...

Tom--I appreciate your promoting my publications. thanks. seth

Tom Van Dyke said...

hey, I'm a fan

djf said...

Shouldn't "late 17th or early 18th century" should be "late 18th or early 19th century"? Gibbon's dates were 1737-1794.