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General Information, Media Advisory, Research

LSU Social Science Researchers Rank 13th in the Country for Media Impact

10/15/2013 02:38 PM

BATON ROUGE – A new study by the Center for a Public Anthropology has yielded rankings on the degree in which social science faculty at various universities and departments share their research with the broader public, and LSU is ranked 13th overall.

The Center for a Public Anthropology released their findings on the Faculty Media Impact website,, and users can see overall rankings, along with rankings for various social science disciplines – anthropology, economics, political science, psychology and sociology.

In addition to coming in at 13th overall, LSU’s faculty also ranked highly in psychology, ranked 11th; sociology, ranked 15th; and anthropology, ranked 27th. LSU’s Department of Sociology received the university’s highest citation and ranking score in the study.

“I’m delighted that LSU and sociology figure so prominently in this national ranking,” said Edward S. Shihadeh, professor of sociology and criminology and chair of the Department of Sociology. “It is not just about doing research for the sake of it, it’s about giving something back to the hard-working tax-payers who fund our research.”

The Faculty Media Impact Project places importance on public media citations, rather than citations in academic journals. The study is based on more than 50,000 search queries that involve more than 6,000 news sources relating to 12,777 professors at 94 universities in social sciences. It examines the degree to which these faculty members are cited in the Google News Archive over a six year period (2006-2012). The formula for establishing rankings highlights the total average citation score of individuals within a department or school divided by the percentage of that department's or school’s public funding.

The ranking shows the importance of not only the research itself, but having the research publicized in the media and presented to the general public.

LSU’s most cited researchers in the study include Mary Manhein, director of the Forensic Anthropology and Computer Enhancement Services, or FACES, Lab; Troy Blanchard, sociology professor; Matthew Lee, senior associate vice chancellor in the Office of Research & Economic Development and sociology professor; Wayne Parent, Russell B. Long Professor of political science; James Richardson, Harris J. and Marie P. Chustz Endowed Professor and master’s advisor in the Public Administration Institute; and John Anderson, map librarian in charge of the Cartographic Information Center in the Department of Geography & Anthropology, who all have a total citation score above 40.

According to Robert Borofsky, director of the Center for a Public Anthropology and professor at Hawaii Pacific University, “The project’s rankings allow readers to compare specific scholars, departments, and schools in respect to both their media citations and, importantly, the degree to which those who draw on public funding participate in public conversations in return. The project’s rankings strive to give credit where credit is due – to the faculty, departments, and schools that share their work with the broader public. These groups widen our world; they enrich our understandings. They deserve to be recognized.”

For information on the LSU College of Humanities & Social Sciences, visit

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