Academic journal article Journal of Electronic Commerce Research

Academic Perceptions of Electronic Commerce Journals: Rankings and Regional Differences

Academic journal article Journal of Electronic Commerce Research

Academic Perceptions of Electronic Commerce Journals: Rankings and Regional Differences

Article excerpt

1.Introduction

The exploration of electronic commerce (e-commerce or EC) extends the online market, as well as changes the way business is conducted, making e-commerce research one of the most attractive areas for business research. Spanning a period of three decades, research issues have evolved from the conceptual development of e-commerce to recent social media-oriented social commerce [e.g., Friedrich 2016; Lin et al. 2017; Wirtz & Göttel 2016]. The number of papers and journals has grown rapidly, but their quality and foci vary. Furthermore, since e-commerce is an emerging cross-disciplinary field, many journals in related fields, such as information systems (IS) and marketing, are also publishing e-commerce papers. A recent study indicates that the prolific authors of EC papers differ greatly between EC and IS journals [Hsu & Chiang 2017]. Hence, a question of interest to many scholars is how these EC journals are perceived by researchers in general, and how EC journals compare to top journals in related fields. Knowledge of the above issues can help researchers assess the value of different journals when they submit their research work, as well as enable administrators to accurately measure research performance.

With the above understanding, the objective of this study was to examine how these journals are perceived by the academic community, and provide an explanation why certain high-quality EC papers are not published in EC journals. An open survey was conducted online to collect data on four dimensions: popularity, relevance, academic contribution, and publication preference. We analyzed a total of 162 responses received from researchers around the world.

Previous EC journal rankings focused on evaluating the quality of EC-related journals, giving scholars who intended to study EC-related topics an idea for reviewing research literature [Wang & Chen 2010; Bharati & Tarasewich 2002; Mylonopoulos & Theoharakis 2001]. However, in these studies, top-ranked journals usually overlapped those that rank high in related fields, such as IS journals, confusing the perception of e-commerce journals. To bridge the above-mentioned gap, this study aims to investigate academic perceptions of EC journals and how they compare with top journals in related disciplines.

A ranking investigation customized for EC journals would allow scholars to rapidly peruse the profiles of these journals in order to determine a suitable target for paper submission. In addition, this knowledge would help researchers find well-written EC research papers and identify mainstream EC research issues, as well as ensure that the authors of papers published in top EC journals are recognized by their peers. To achieve the goal, this study targeted two research questions: (1) how EC journals and top journals in reference disciplines are perceived by EC scholars, and (2) whether scholars' perception vary in different regions?

2.Literature Review

2.1.Historical Development of E-Commerce Journals

As e-commerce has grown, the number of published academic papers in this area has dramatically increased [see e.g., Hsu & Chiang 2017]. The development of EC journals includes three main stages: initiation, expansion and maturity. The field of EC journals was born in 1991, kickstarted by the publication of three journals: Electronic Markets (EM), Internet Research, and the Journal of Organizational Computing and Electronic Commerce (JOCEC). In 1993, the Journal of Business-To-Business Marketing was founded, followed by the International Journal of Electronic Commerce (IJEC) and the Journal of Internet Banking & Commerce (JIBC) in 1996. Between 1991 and 2000, ten new e-commerce journals were established, but the main expansion stage occurred between the years 2001 to 2013, when a total of 27 new EC journals appeared. During that same period, however, the following 7 journals were either discontinued or merged: Quarterly Journal of Electronic Commerce (QJEC, inactive since 2002), Journal of Internet Marketing (JIM, inactive since 2003), WebNet Journal (inactive since 2001), e-Service Journal (inactive since 2012), Journal of Strategic E-Commerce (JSE, inactive since 2007), International Journal of Cases on Electronic Commerce (IJCEC, inactive since 2007), and International Journal of e-Business Management (inactive since 2011). …

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