To the Editor: Predicting research quality on the basis of past research publications is clearly imprecise, as noted by Nicol et al in their recent article on National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grant applications.1 They note that assessor ratings of applicants’ “track records” correspond poorly with the bibliometric data for authors, and that there is vast variability between discipline panels. For immunology, the correlation between track record scores and journal impact or citations was high, at over 0.7. For public health, the correlation was actually negative.
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