American Chemical Society journals remain most impactful for chemistry community

The journals of the American Chemical Society (ACS) recorded new levels of prominence in 2019, according to data reported on June 29 in the 2020 Web of Science Journal Citation Reports™ (JCR) from Clarivate.

ACS’ journals grew in published output, impact and citations across the portfolio, reflecting their deep and enduring relevance across chemistry and related fields. Total citations increased to over 3.6 million, an almost 7% increase from the previous year. These citation gains represent a decade of continuous growth for ACS Publications, with the number of citations doubling in the past 10 years. As a result of the expanded citations, ACS journals remain the most impactful in five of the seven main chemistry categories: Chemistry, Analytical; Chemistry, Inorganic & Nuclear; Chemistry, Medicinal; Chemistry, Multidisciplinary; and Chemistry, Organic.

“We’re proud that ACS Publications’ journals continue to be indispensable to our community,” says Sarah Tegen, Ph.D., senior vice president, ACS Publications Division. “Our authors, peer reviewers and editors deserve tremendous credit for their contributions to the chemistry enterprise. The increases we’ve observed in our journals’ citations and impact are due to the remarkable growth in output and readership that would not have been possible without their hard work and dedication.”

Notable highlights from this year’s JCR include ACS’ flagship multidisciplinary chemistry journal, the Journal of the American Chemical Society, which continued to strengthen its position as the most-cited journal in chemistry, tallying more than half-a-million citations in 2019, contributing to its Journal Impact Factor™ of 14.612. This strong performance continues to place it firmly above competitor journals, such as Wiley’s Angewandte Chemie International Edition. ACS journals lead in both the most citations and highest Journal Impact Factor™ in the multidisciplinary chemistry category; Chemical Reviews secured its leadership position as the highest impact chemistry journal with a Journal Impact Factor™ of 52.758.

ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces expanded in published articles, citations and impact for the fifth year in a row, with citations increasing by over 44,000. ACS Applied Energy Materials received an inaugural Journal Impact Factor™ of 4.473, encompassing only one year of published articles. ACS recently expanded its portfolio of journals to support additional applied materials research, and its growing strength and importance in the discipline is evident.

ACS’ environmental and sustainable chemistry portfolio led the field in impact and citations. ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering increased its Journal Impact Factor™ to 7.632 while expanding citations by more than 65%. Environmental Science & Technology (ES&T) remained the most-cited journal in the “Engineering, Environmental” and “Environmental Science” categories, with a record Journal Impact Factor™ of 7.864 and a record 187,990 citations. Environmental Science & Technology Letters also earned its highest-ever Journal Impact Factor™, 7.678, and its highest-ever citation count. ACS is expanding this portfolio through the introduction of ACS ES&T Water and ACS ES&T Engineering later this year.

Citations, Journal Impact Factor™ and published output grew in journals across the portfolio. ACS Catalysis received an Journal Impact Factor™ of 12.350 and 70,712 citations, an increase of 27% from 2018, and ACS Sensors received an Journal Impact Factor™ of 7.333 and 6,209 citations, an increase of more than 80%.

Topically focused journals saw increases in Journal Impact Factor™, including ACS Energy Letters, a relatively new journal which has rapidly grown in influence since its founding. The journal’s Journal Impact Factor™ increased to 19.003, supported by over 18,000 citations, making it the highest impact journal in the “Electrochemistry” category and surpassing all competitors. ACS Nano received a Journal Impact Factor™ of 14.588, with over 166,000 total citations. The Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling received a Journal Impact Factor™ of 4.549 and 19,075 citations, while Biomacromolecules received a record high Journal Impact Factor™ of 6.092 and 38,863 total citations.

The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry achieved 118,586 citations and is the most-cited journal in the category of “Agriculture, Multidisciplinary.” Many ACS journals dominated their category, including Analytical Chemistry, receiving the highest citations in the “Chemistry, Analytical” category; Inorganic Chemistry as the most-highly cited in “Chemistry, Inorganic & Nuclear;” the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry as the most-highly cited in “Chemistry, Medicinal;” Organic Letters as the most-highly cited in “Chemistry, Organic;” Crystal Growth & Design as the most-highly cited in “Crystallography;” and Macromolecules as the most-highly cited in the “Polymer Science” category.

Demand for open access publishing is growing, and ACS is pleased to serve the needs of this community. ACS Central Science, the premier venue for publishing exceptional interdisciplinary chemical research that is free to both authors and readers, also saw citations rise over 60%. ACS Omega reached a Journal Impact Factor™ of 2.870 and attracted more than 10,600 citations, close to a threefold increase from the prior year. Both journals continue to attract more global authors year on year.

“ACS Publications is dedicated to the advancement of science that addresses the world’s most urgent problems. We’ve been at the forefront of changes in academic publishing, and are innovating new ways to expand access to scientific research,” says James Milne, Ph.D, president, ACS Publications. “Our role in the global chemistry community is clear through our commitment to publishing impactful, highly cited research that propels science forward.”

We invite our readers to take a deeper dive into the data behind the JCR by exploring a selection of the most-read and most-cited articles from across our portfolio of journals and learning more about why ACS Publications journals are leaders in their fields.

The American Chemical Society (ACS) is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. ACS’ mission is to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and its people. The Society is a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related information and research through its multiple research solutions, peer-reviewed journals, scientific conferences, eBooks and weekly news periodical Chemical & Engineering News. ACS journals are among the most cited, most trusted and most read within the scientific literature; however, ACS itself does not conduct chemical research. As a specialist in scientific information solutions (including SciFinder® and STN®), its CAS division powers global research, discovery and innovation. ACS’ main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

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