Statistical modeling of scientific productivity and impact provides insights into bibliometric measures used also to quantify differences between individual scholars. The Q model decomposes the log-transformed impact of a published paper into a researcher capacity parameter and a random luck parameter. These two parameters are then modeled together with the log-transformed number of published papers (i.e., an indicator of productivity) by means of a trivariate normal distribution. In this work we propose a formulation of the Q model that can be estimated as a structural equation model. The Q model as a structural equation model allows us to quantify the reliability of researchers’ Q parameter estimates. It can be extended to incorporate person covariates and multivariate extensions of the Q model could also be estimated. We empirically illustrate our approach to estimate the Q model and also provide openly available code for R and Mplus.

This content is only available as a PDF.

Author notes

Handling Editor: Vincent Larivière

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. For a full description of the license, please visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode.