An alternative measure of scientist impact

The TwiLi Index ranks academic scholars using a simple, reproducible formula based on their follower numbers on X (Twitter) and LinkedIn. Mike Young Academy has released the index in the period 2019-22 and is scheduled to release a new index which includes the platform Bluesky Social in 2024.

It is pronounced like ‘twilight’ without the ‘t’ at the end, the ‘TwiLi Index’.

Scientists and researchers are constantly assessed for their ‘impact’. Scholarly institutions are themselves assessed by governing and funding agencies based on impact scores.

Most often, it is the number of scholarly citations that is considered the most important measure of this. Google Scholar, for example, highlights researchers’ and scientists’ h-index, based on citations.

The TwiLi Index uses a simple formula to tally X (Twitter) and LinkedIn followers.

At the same time, many scientists have embraced the use of social media to disseminate their research, and to network with other scientists. They are most often supported in this by their university institutions that want to improve their brand among stakeholders, other scientists, and the wider public.

The TwiLi Index is a calculation of scientist ‘impact’ based on social media following that is an alternative to bibliometric scores like citation numbers. Unlike the more tongue-in-cheek formulas like the Kardashian Index, the TwiLi Index considers a high social media following to be — if everything else is equal — a good thing.

You can read about the TwiLi Index methodology, why we use the platforms X (Twitter) and LinkedIn, and how the index came about here.

The TwiLi Index is based on 100 per cent publicly available data, and all data are collected via legitimate and official channels (Twitter API, and LinkedIn front end).

TwiLi Index ranking releases:

Nordic research institutions on X (Twitter):

Ongoing work on Bluesky Social:

Find, promote and celebrate your most influential scientists!

Do you represent a university or research institution? Mike Young Academy can calculate a baseline TwiLi Index for your institution and carry out a subsequent analysis of your scientists’ interlocking social media network.

This can help you find the scientists you need to celebrate (and help motivate those that need a friendly nudge to be more active on social media!)

Contact Mike Young on 30 66 31 21 or on to hear more about what we can offer and get a no-obligation price quote.

Testimonial: “The Twi-Li Index shouldn’t stand alone, but it can be used as a good indicator of how well a researcher is disseminating her or his research through other channels than the usual”

Niels Buus Larsen, PhD Fellow, Predictive Modelling, Centre for Business Data Analytics, CBS