Ranking of Universities and researchers in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering by Research.com

The website Research.com has published its ratings of Top Universities and Top Scientists, based mostly on citation. The Mechanical Engineering in the UWM is the number 91 in the USA, and the number 338 in the world. University Rankings/Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. Prof. Michael Nosonovsky was rated 817 in the world, 349 in the USA (and the 4th in Wisconsin). The total of 1328 top researchers in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (525 of them in the US) were included. Last year, in a similar study by Elsevier, which used a different methodology, Dr. Nosonovsky’s rank among researchers in Mechanical Engineering was 223 in the world, 68 in the USA, and the 3rd in Wisconsin. (See Elsevier ranking of most cited Mechanical Engineers.)

There are more top scientists in the UWM Materials Science, Electrical Engineering, Chemistry, and in other areas.

I am not a big fan of measuring scientific accomplishments by citation. Your results, found in your publications, should speak for themselves. There are different kinds of papers and articles (and experienced editors know that different kinds of papers are needed for a good journal). There are different types of contributions to a paper, and there are different reasons why papers are cited. High citation does not necessarily mean a high quality of results, and vice versa.

Despite that, citation is important, and many academics still value citation and productivity. This is because some people would not have time to read your papers and discuss your results. In that case, formal rankings may be helpful, and many people value them. When I visited the ITMO University in Russia, I was surprised to find the slogan “In H-index we trust” at ITMO, and I made a selfie next to it. The H-index is not a god, and there is no need to trust in it uncritically. Citation indices including the H-index are just tools, which measure, approximately, researchers’ impact on the scientific literature. While one should not overestimate the value of high citation, there is also the tendency to underestimate it, particularly among people who do not publish much themselves. Of course, many scientists hope that their results, ideas, and inventions will stay in the literature or in textbooks, say, 50 or 100 years from today. Nobody knows whether that would happen, but high citation of a paper, say, 10 years after its publication is still better than low citation.