Urban Planning Academics: Tweets and Citations

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-7635

Article | Open Access

Urban Planning Academics: Tweets and Citations


  • Thomas W. Sanchez Urban Affairs and Planning, Virginia Tech, USA


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Abstract:  This article discusses the relationship between Twitter usage and scholarly citations by urban planning academics in the U.S. and Canada. Social media and academic publications may be considered separate activities by some, but over the past decade there has been a convergence of the two. Social media and scholarship can be complementary not only when social media is used to communicate about new publications, but also to gather research ideas and build research networks. The analysis presented here explores this relationship for urban planning faculty using data for faculty who had active Twitter accounts between March 2007 and April 2019. Measures of Twitter activity were combined with Google Scholar citation data for 322 faculty with Twitter accounts. As expected, the results highlight that there are different patterns of Twitter activity between junior faculty and senior faculty both in terms of proportions of each rank using Twitter as well as activity levels on the social media platform. The results also suggest that Twitter activity does not have a statistically significant relationship with overall scholarly productivity as measured by citation levels.

Keywords:  academic; Canada; citations; Google; planning; research; social media; Twitter; US

Published:   24 February 2021


DOI: https://doi.org/10.17645/up.v6i1.3720


© Thomas W. Sanchez. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.