Re-evaluation: Maintaining high-quality content in Scopus
Almost a year ago we announced the launch of the new Re-evaluation program for Scopus content. This program was created as an incentive for journals to maintain their high content quality. When a journal is originally suggested for Scopus, it must undergo a rigorous evaluation and selection process to ensure it meets all the high-quality title selection criteria required for acceptance into Scopus. However, journals must also demonstrate the ability to maintain their quality status year over year.
An additional focus for the first year of the re-evaluation program was to ensure all journals met the same baseline of quality standards. When Scopus launched in 2004, content originally came from different sources with different levels of evaluation. Over time, evaluation criteria for new titles has evolved to become stricter and standardized. The re-evaluation process sets a standard level of quality expectations and applies it across all titles, regardless of when they were first accepted into Scopus.
The first analysis of all journals in Scopus flags any title that did not meet a least one of the 6 metric benchmark criteria and initiates the re-evaluation workflow. Publishers of a flagged journal are notified and provided information on which metric benchmarks were not met, along with the journal's overall performance over time. This sets the expectation for both meeting and maintaining quality standards.
If the journal shows improvement in the next annual evaluation by meeting at least one metric benchmark, coverage in Scopus will continue. In the following year, when all journals in the database are again reviewed, the journal will be checked to ensure improvement has been maintained. If the journal does not meet any of the six benchmarks for 2 consecutive years, it moves to into re-evaluation by the independent Content Selection and Advisory Board (CSAB).
The CSAB’s Re-evaluation process is based on the same Scopus title selection criteria used for newly suggested titles: journal policy, quality of the content, journal standing, regularity and quality of the homepage. If a journal does not meet all the selection criteria, the CSAB may decide that the journal should continue in Scopus but checked again in another 12 months (at the same time as the entire Scopus journal base is reviewed), or that it should be discontinued and the forward flow of content stopped. A journal that is discontinued from Scopus enters an embargo period of 5 years before it can be re-suggested for coverage.
In this way, Scopus and the CSAB can work with journal publishers in a fair and non-biased way to maintain an overall quality standard and provide you with content that is of high quality and reliable.