Index Copernicus Value

By :- Rahul Kaushik
M.Pharm (Pharmacognosy)

ICV stands for Index Copernicus Value. It is a value that categorizes various Journals from varied fields according to their importance, scientific content accuracy, editorial, technical and international standards. Its an initiative started by Index Copernicus International based at South Africa. IC aimed to provide assistance to new comers in the field of scientific publication.

Brief Introduction of Index Copernicus International

Index Copernicus (IC) is a world-wide gateway to complex scientific information. This system is aimed at:

  • academic-level researchers
  • clinical practitioners
  • information and reprint providers
  • librarians
  • journal editors
  • government agencies

IC Journals is a journal indexing, ranking and abstracting site. Index Copernicus’ innovative approach to the international scientific information services is integrative, interactive and inclusive.


Most of the existing scientific information systems provide only one type of information bibliographical in nature. Bibliographical databases only provide information on published papers, whereas other databases focus on the registration of trials or other types of information. As one can imagine, single pieces of information are of limited value. Index Copernicus provides easy links between a number of different information areas, leading effortlessly from one type of information to another. A search in the scientists database, for instance, can lead to information linked on other services like the Journals Master List, Case Reports Register, Patents, or Clinical Trial Register. IC is thus truly interactive, answering the user’s more complex questions.


The information depends on the user’s depth of inquiry, often providing novel and useful information that the user desires. It can thus be tailored to the user’s unique questions, making it totally interactive. In other words, the user can control the type of information acquired.


IC is a global scientific database through which all journals can be registered, not just those deemed appropriate by an arbitrary group of individuals. This characteristic makes IC truly inclusive as opposed to exclusive. However, it is important to note that IC respects the various scientific communities submitting their information by allowing those communities to determine what they want to have displayed globally and what they want to keep confidential. Countries may, for example, not want to have details about their scientists and projects listed, allowing this information to only be displayed “locally”. This would be important for patenting considerations.

IC is, by its very nature, multi-cultural, serving the global scientific community and respecting the cultural makeup of its members. IC, if so desired, can also be set up for various countries in a multi-lingual manner whereby the information can also be made available in local dialects. In general, IC can also be used as a major local productivity tool through which its databases highlight top local scientists also serving as a network for other scientists wishing to find assistance or colleagues and determine processes that will ensure their success. Excellent networking clearly increases the chances for funding and international recognition. Having this peer finding tool therefore brings experts together, again increasing their chance for grant funding on many levels. The same productivity tool and potential for collaboration on an international level can be noted. We regard this IC activity as vital for all scientists/clinicians, regardless of their discipline.

IndexCopernicus Evaluation Methodology 2011

Stage 1 : Detailed Parametrical analysisThe following groups of parameters are evaluated:
  • Scientific quality: 580 base points (58.0%)
  • Editorial quality: 200 base points (20.0%)
  • International availability: 135 base points (13.5%)
  • Frequency-Regularity-Stability: 50 base points (5.0%)
  • Technical quality: 35 base points (3.5%)
  • Total: 1000 base points (100,0%)

Stage 2 : Negative score analysisNegative score is given for:

  1. irregular or late issuance [late by up to one publishing period (-30), joint issues (-50), late more than one publishing period (-60)];
  2. Unethical advertisement placement [within article (-60), directly before/after article (-40).




Stage 3 : Expert peer-review

Frequency-Regularity-Stability: 50 base points (5.0%)

  1. Scientific significance of the published material [±20]
  2. Up-to-date content [±20]
  3. Educational value [±20].

How do the Index Copernicus Value (ICV) calculated ?First, Base Points (BP) are converted into 10 points Total Basic Score (TBS), then:

  1. For journals indexed in Current Contents Index Copernicus Value (ICV) calculations are based on the following formula:
    9+[(TBS)×(IF)] (where IF = impact factor value).
    This formula ensures that the journals indexed at Current Contents a have minimum ICV of =9 points.
  2. For the rest of journals which are NOT indexed in Current Contents TBS=ICV

I. Scientific QualityThe following parameters have been evaluated:

  1. International indexation Three levels of indexation have been defined:
    1. Basic level – indexation in international bibliographic databases EXCEPT Index Medicus/MEDLINE and Current Contents.
    2. MEDLINE level (indexation at Index Medicus/MEDLINE). The score can be lowered if a journal does not or is late with its delivery of XML files according to Medline requirements.
    3. Indexation is carried out at the Philadelphia Institute of Scientifi c Information’s Master Journal List (based on impact factor). IF is used in the calculation algorithm of Index Copernicus Value (ICV) – see above.
  2. Annual percent of original research papers
    An original research paper is one, which presents the results of empiric investigation (clinical or laboratorial) divided into the following sections: background, material and methods, results, discussion, conclusions, references. The percentage of the original work published in a journal refl ects its character (scientific or educational) and indicates the potential interest of researchers in publishing there.
  3. The number of papers published annually from centres outside the journal’s country of origin indirectly indicates a degree of the journal’s acceptance on the international market. The more international publications – the higher the score.
  4. Number of all papers published on annual basis
    Reflects potential authorship and acceptance for the journal. Only papers published in regular issues are considered. Papers published in special issues or supplements are not counted as they are not considered to undergo the regular peer-review process. It will also be assessed if the papers published in a journal come from a source associated with the publisher or editorial board only, lowering the IC score.
  5. The International Editorial Board adds to the score, for it creates a chance to further the journal’s development.

II. Editorial quality

  1. Cover page [all the following items should appear clearly: title, ISSN, frequency, volume/issue/part number, month/year].
  2. The leading element of editorial quality is the uniform composition of presented manuscripts and adherence to a journal’s instruction for it’s authors. The following parameters are evaluated:
    1. The summary should count 200-250 words and have a structured form, i.e. refl ect structure of an article (background, material and methods, results, conclusion). Non-structural summaries consisting of less than 200 words will receive a penalty.
    2. Key words should not repeat the title of the manuscript. Ideally, authors should use key words selected from the MeSH catalogue.
    3. Uniform presentation of original manuscripts. Research works should be divided into background, material and methods, results, discussion, conclusions, references.
    4. References should be presented in consecutive order (as they are cited in the text). The first six authors should be presented. Journal title abbreviations should be in Medline standard. Citations in the text should be marked by Arab numbers in brackets or in the upper. Each citation item should be placed in a separate paragraph.
      Alphabetical order, “en block” presentation or incorrect abbreviation of journal titles lowers the score.
  3. Information for authors should be included in each journal issue, and should contain:
    The general rules of the manuscript evaluation process, disclosing conflicts of interest between the referee and author, the referee and research sponsor, the author and research sponsor, the patient’s privacy rights and ethical issues in animal and clinical research (Editorial Policy).
  4. Detailed editorial and technical information regarding manuscript preparation (Instruction for Authors)
  5. Editorial information should include a list of Editorial Board members, editorial correspondence addresses, the name and address of the publisher, ISSN and frequency of issuance (monthly, quarterly)
  6. Advertisements should be placed on editorial pages (at the beginning and/or end of a journal).Advertisement within scientifi c content, i.e. before, inside and directly after an article is undesirable and lowers the IC score.


III. International availabilityInternational availability is important for the proper development of a scientifi c journal. Two factors are taken into consideration:

  1. The language of publication: English is preferable, since this is the universal language of science.Journals published in other languages should have full size (200-250 words) structural summaries in English and a bilingual article title as well as table/fi gure subtitles.
  2. Internet availability: The internet is an important medium for scientific publications and for the exchange of professional information. It is due to its global availability, speed and low cost of publication, in comparison with printed journals. Internet availability enhances a journal’s chance of broadening circulation and accelerating development. Access to editorial information, the table of contents, summaries, full text articles and search tools are evaluated. The preferred language of a website is English.

IV. Frequency-Regularity-Market stabilityThis group of parameters assesses the editor’s publishing/managing effi ciency. We evaluate:

  1. Regularity of issuance, which is an important factor for a journal’s stability and one of the key evaluation parameter at other international indexing databases such as Medline and Current Contents. Journals of an irregular issuance, those which are late, or those which issue joint issues receive a lower score.
  2. We add score to journals on their continued presence on the market.

V. Technical qualityTechnical quality assesses proper presentation of the scientific content. The quality of the preprint process, especially desktop publishing (DTP), the ability to print in colour, and the quality of paper (acidfree is preferred) are evaluated. The preferred format of a journal is A4.

Hope this information will help Research scholars understand the importance of ICV value of Journals.

July 2, 2011

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