Texas Tech University

CASNR Scholar Among World's Most Cited Researchers

Norman Martin

March 5, 2021


Lam-Son Phan Tran is an expert in biotechnology and biological sciences within the Department of Plant and Soil Science.

Lam-Son Phan Tran, an expert on biotechnology and biological sciences and professor in the Department of Plant and Soil Science (PSS), part of the College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources (CASNR) at Texas Tech University, has been named among the world's most highly cited researchers in their respective fields for 2020.

The annual list is compiled by Clarivate Analytics, a company that provides scientific research and analytic services. The highly anticipated annual list identifies researchers who demonstrate significant influence in their chosen field or fields through the publication of multiple, highly cited papers during the last decade.

Their names are drawn from the publications that rank in the top 1% by citations for field and publication year in Clarivate's Web of Science citation index.

This isn't the first time Tran has made it to the elite Clarivate Analytics listing. He also was honored in 2016, 2018 and 2019.

"Recognition as a highly cited researcher requires multiple papers that rank in the top 1% each year, and only the very best scientists in the world attain this honor," said Glen Ritchie, PSS chair. "Dr. Tran's accomplishment of this feat multiple times is indicative of his worldwide recognition and is a result of his exceptional research skills, leadership and work ethic. We are honored to have Dr. Tran as a member of our department, and we anticipate that he and his collaborators will direct cutting-edge research for years to come."

Tran stepped into his new research and teaching post with Texas Tech's Institute of Genomics for Crop Abiotic Stress Tolerance last September. Led by Luis Rafael Herrera-Estrella, the high-profile research group examines how plants adapt and thrive in the presence of environmental stresses, such as extreme heat and cold, drought and brackish water sources.

"This recognition shows CASNR faculty are among the world's best in their fields, with pioneering contributions advancing fundamental and applied sciences, and spurring technological innovation," said Cindy Akers, CASNR associate dean for academic and student programs.

Prior to arriving at Texas Tech, Tran served as unit leader of the Stress Adaptation Research Unit at the RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science in Yokohama, Japan. Today, his Texas Tech research program broadly focuses on regulatory network and crosstalk among signaling molecules in plant responses to environmental stresses as well as translational genomics for improvement of crop productivity in the era of global climate change.

His basic and applied research programs will contribute to some of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, which include maintaining sustainable production of crops for food, biomass and industrial uses.

One of his primary goals at Texas Tech is to further promote research on plant functional genomics and regulatory roles of signaling molecules, leading to development of crop cultivars with enhanced environmental stress resistance. Importantly, he wants to pass his knowledge and research experiences to the next generation through teaching and training.

Clarivate Analytics officials noted that researchers on the list are selected for their exceptional influence and performance in one or more of 21 fields or across several fields. The methodology that determines the "who's who" of influential researchers draws on the data and analysis performed by bibliometric experts and data scientists at the Institute for Scientific Information at Clarivate. It also uses the tallies to identify the countries and research institutions where these scientific elite are based.