From a recent post by Peter Klein, I’ve learned of the existence of something called the Kardashian Index.
Biologist Neil Hall made a bit of a splash a few months back by introducing the Kardashian Index, basically the ratio of an academic researcher’s Twitter followers to citations in peer-reviewed journals. (For a rough approximation, just divide Twitter followers by Google Scholar cites.) Someone with a very high K-index, the story goes, has a large popular following, but hasn’t made any important scientific contributions — in other words, like Kim, famous for being famous.
I’m afraid that my Kardashian Index may be a bit higher than it should be. I’m fairly prominent in the academic blogosphere, but my Google Scholar citation count suggests that my research hasn’t made a massive impact yet.