The Female Science Professor blogs/questions the our practices of citation. She writes:
“A group of colleagues makes a specific effort to cite each other’s papers — those paper not involving the author/s doing the citing, so no self-citation is involved — to help each other get their citation numbers up. They don’t gratuitously cite a paper that is irrelevant to the topic at hand, but they proactively seek opportunities to cite each other’s papers, and, given a range of options for citation of a particular point, they will choose to cite a paper by someone from this group.
If you have not participated in something like this, does it bother you that some people do this?”
She brings up questions about how cite, why, and what is the measurable impact.