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In the almost 40 years since we wrote Evaluative bibliometrics enormous advances have been made in data availability and analytic technique. The journal impact factor of the 1960s has clearly not kept up with the state of the art. However, for both old and new indicators, basic validity and relevance issues remain, such as by what standard can we validate our results, and what external use can appropriately be made of them? As funding support becomes more difficult, we should not lose sight of the necessity to again demonstrate the importance of our research, and must keep in mind that it is the relevance of our results that count, not the elegance of our mathematics.

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