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Citation Research and Impact Metrics

Methods and metrics for evaluating scholarly and research impact.

What You Need to Know

Collaboration can be determined both by looking at co-authors as well as the organizations of those co-authors.

Important Points: 

  • Experts.ASU is the only database that has collected publications by the author so that the searcher does not have to do it manually, however, check the publication list to make sure it includes the appropriate publications and is not missing any. The publications list in this database cannot be adjusted, so if not complete, do not use this database.
  • Searching by author name is challenging. Even if the author is consistent with exactly how their name is listed on each document, a database's policy may change the author's name (ex., using initials instead of spelling out the full first and middle names.) Use the database's HELP file for author searching to learn the specific policies of the database. Make sure that you have sufficiently covered all possible variants of the author's name in each database you use. For common names, adding in the author's organization/institution to the search generally helps, however, there may be situations when two or more people with the same name are employed by the same organization; in some cases, manually going through a results list to eliminate unwanted documents may be necessary.

Best Uses:

  • Determining who's working with whom.


  • In the center of the screen click on "Profiles" and put the ASU faculty member's name in the search box.
  • On the results page, you should see only the entry for that person. Click on the person's name in the entry's box.
  • On the person's profile screen, click on "Network" within the gray navigation bar.
  • On the network page you may change the view to visualization (image of connections), map (where the collaborators are located), profiles (information about the person) and research unit (information about the unit). For profiles and research units only the ASU data is clickable (profiles and unit information outside of ASU is not available.)

Use the Scopus database for authors not in Experts.ASU or if you want to use different parameters for the search.

Scopus covers some conference proceedings and books/book chapters in addition to journal articles and all these document types, unless you specify differently, will be in the results list. Originally Scopus only covered documents from 1996 to the present, however they are now updating pre-1996 cited references going back to 1970; consequently authors with works published from 1970-1995 may see more of the publications covered over time.

Finding collaborations in Scopus

  1. Using an author search, find all the publications in the database for an individual. Recommended search strategy:
    1. "lastname firstinitial" as author
    2. AND "arizona state university" as affiliation name (or whatever organization the author is affiliated with)
  2. Click on "Analyze Search Results" at the top of the search results section.
  3. On the analysis page, click on either the "Documents by author" or "Documents by affiliation" cards to see a bar chart. You may also use the "Export" link near the top right of the screen to download the data to a spreadsheet (csv file) or the chart as zip file.

Although other databases do not have the report generation capabilities of Experts.ASU, Scopus, or Web of Science, it is possible to extract some collaboration data from many of the indexing and abstracting services available via the ASU Library.

  1. Search for the author, making sure your searches cover all possible variant forms of the name.
  2. From the results list page, look in the left-hand column for whatever analysis, limits, or refine features are offered (a few databases use the right-hand column instead of the left).
  3. If there is an author category, the options underneath that heading will be a listing of the authors found in the results set. These are the co-authors of all the papers in the results set, in other words, these are the people that your author is collaborating with. The listing will usually be from highest to lowest with the number of results listed after the name.
  4. Also check to see if the left-hand column has a heading for institution, organization or affiliation. These will be the organizations that the co-authors are affiliated with. As with the authors, these will usually be listed from highest to lowest with the number of results listed after the name.
  5. You many select a specific author(s) or organization(s) to reduce the list to just the results associated with them. OR you may cut and paste the data from the left-hand column into a word document or spreadsheet to create a report.

The ASU Library acknowledges the twenty-three Native Nations that have inhabited this land for centuries. Arizona State University's four campuses are located in the Salt River Valley on ancestral territories of Indigenous peoples, including the Akimel O’odham (Pima) and Pee Posh (Maricopa) Indian Communities, whose care and keeping of these lands allows us to be here today. ASU Library acknowledges the sovereignty of these nations and seeks to foster an environment of success and possibility for Native American students and patrons. We are advocates for the incorporation of Indigenous knowledge systems and research methodologies within contemporary library practice. ASU Library welcomes members of the Akimel O’odham and Pee Posh, and all Native nations to the Library.