How to analyse citations with Scholarometer or Publish or Perish

An earlier post examined how to track citations with Google Scholar and Web of Science. However, there are free tools that let you do even more sophisticated analysis of these citations: Scholarometer and Publish or Perish. The statistics they produce can be helpful in determining the larger impact of an author’s publications. Both Scholarometer and Publish or Perish draw their data from Google Scholar, which provides a comprehensive source of citation data across the social sciences.


Scholarometer, still in beta version, works as a browser extension for Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. Once the extension is installed, simply click on the Scholarometer symbol (an orange ‘S’) in the top right of Chrome or click on View — Sidebar — Scholarometer in Firefox.

You can do a basic search by filling in the author’s name, or an advanced search which will allow you to control the form of the author’s name or identify a specific citation. Before you can submit your query, you must also tag it. These tags are made publicly available and strengthen Scholarometer’s comparative data. The tags themselves are controlled using predefined categories derived from the indexes of Thomson Reuters’ Web of Science. As you begin to type in your tag (such as “sociology”), you will see certain tags have a golden key next to them. These are the controlled tags and you must choose at least one to complete your query. You may also add additional tags of your own devising.

Search results in Scholarometer

An example of a search in Scholarometer - click to enlarge

Results will load on a webpage behind the extension’s dialogue window in Chrome or next to the sidebar in Firefox. Several metrics are offered as the “impact analysis”, plus an index specific to the controlled tag you selected. To make the statistics even more accurate, have a look at the results and click those that definitely relate to the author. Having removed the false positives that skew the data, select “view checked” to re-calculate the metrics.

Mousing over an individual citation offers a range of additional options, including viewing the original article and conducting a search in Google Scholar for related citations.

The results themselves can be saved and exported in a variety of ways. Click “export” or “share” in the top right to see the options.

Scholarometer’s help section is fairly sparse. If you encounter any difficulties, talk to us in the Library.

Publish or Perish

Publish or Perish is a program that must be installed on your computer. It will run on Linux, Windows and Mac operating systems. Once installed, the main dialogue window allows you to enter an author’s name, plus names which should be excluded. To control results even more, specify years of publishing activity and select one of seven general academic categories.

Results load below as soon as you run a search; they may be sorted by clicking on each category heading. Uncheck incorrect matches and the metrics at the top will automatically be updated. Publish or Perish offers the wider range of statistics, with ten types of indexes provided. Each offers a slightly different perspective on an author’s impact.

If you’d like to see any of the articles included in the results, simply double-click the citation and Publish or Perish will automatically search Google Scholar for you.

Publish or Perish search

Search results from Publish or Perish - click to enlarge

To export your results, click on “copy” on the right-hand side and choose what form you would like them in (such as text, Excel, etc.).

While Publish or Perish’s main focus is an author’s impact, it is also possible to examine the impact of a journal or analyse an individual citation. Click on one of these types of searches in the top left.

Publish or Perish also has a comprehensive help file. If you can’t find what you need there, ask us in the Library!


About Nuffield College Library

We are a social sciences library serving Nuffield College and the University of Oxford
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One Response to How to analyse citations with Scholarometer or Publish or Perish

  1. Pingback: 2010 in review « Nuffield College Library's Blog

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