# Kardashian Index

The Kardashian Index (K-Index), named after Kim Kardashian, is a measure of the discrepancy between a scientist's social media profile and publication record. Proposed in 2014, the measure compares the number of followers a research scientist has on Twitter to the number of citations they have for their peer-reviewed work.

## Definition

The relationship between the number of Twitter followers ($F$ ) and the number of citations ($C$ ) is described as:

$F=43.3C^{0.32}$ The Kardashian Index is thus calculated as:

${\text{K-index}}={\frac {F(a)}{F(c)}}$ where $F(a)$ is the actual number of Twitter followers of researcher $X$ and $F(c)$ is the number that researcher should have given their citations.

## Interpretation

A high K-index indicates an over-blown scientific fame while a low K-index suggests that a scientist is being undervalued. According to the author, researchers whose K-index > 5 can be considered 'Science Kardashians'.

## Criticism

The K-index suggests that the number of citations of a given scientist is comparable to his or her scientific value. This assumption has been criticized.

On the other hand, the proposal of the K-Index in itself can be interpreted as a criticism to the assumption that scientists should have a social media impact at all while in reality social media footprint has no correlation at all to scientific quality or scientific impact.