Scopus makes an entrance

World’s largest database of abstracts and cited references enters final testing.

World’s Largest Database of Abstracts and Cited References Enters Final Testing

Amsterdam, 15 March 2004 - The true potential of the world’s scientific literature is unleashed today, as the first fully functioning version of Scopus - Elsevier's highly anticipated, full text-linking abstract and indexing (A&I) database - is released to select libraries for final testing and user trials. Full commercial release is expected to follow in Q4 2004.

Conceived solely in response to librarian and user requirements, Scopus is the result of Elsevier's two year collaboration with librarians and researchers at over 20 of the world’s foremost institutions. The outcome? Marshall Clinton, Director of IT Services at University of Toronto Libraries, sums it up: “At the University of Toronto, there is no question that Scopus will not only become a key information source for science, technology and medicine but also supplant some of the more traditional information sources.”

Throughout the development phase, librarians and researchers were unanimous in their requests for a comprehensive resource to eliminate duplication of content, and provide seamless access to full text. So, at the heart of Scopus is the biggest A&I database of scientific literature ever assembled, covering titles from over 4000 STM publishers. And to ensure nothing is missed, Scopus simultaneously searches the scientific web using the science-only Internet search engine, Scirus. Results are listed almost instantaneously, then users can seamlessly link to the full text in one click. It’s this solution which is making ‘dead-links’ a thing of the past. And it’s receiving glowing reports from users, asking: “why didn’t they have this when I was doing my PhD!” 

But that’s just a glimpse of Scopus’ intuition – a sixth sense for knowing how its users think – developed by modelling testers’ cognitive patterns. “We recorded every detail of testers’ reactions when using Scopus,” says Jaco Zijlstra, Director of Scopus. “Now, users can find their way immediately. With Scopus users can expect the unexpected – helping to find results they didn’t even know they wanted.”

The result of all this testing is a user interface which is beautiful in its simplicity, with easy-to-use searching straight from the home page and intuitive browsing tools to fuel serendipity. According to Marshall Clinton: "The Scopus interface clearly reflects the value of the user-centred design approach used in its development. The system works the way researchers use abstract and citation data, not the way we think they should use it." 

In addition to the direct involvement of leading institutions as development partners, Elsevier was able to draw on 30 years' experience in producing some of the most important and respected STM electronic platforms, including abstract and indexing databases such as the renowned Compendex® and EMBASE®, and the ScienceDirect Navigator®.

But Scopus is as much a service as it is a product. Industry-leading levels of reliability and powerful delivery will be coupled with local customer support, customer-specific usage reports which will be COUNTER compliant, as well as on- and off-site training, to provide a complete package for librarians and end-users.

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Notes to Editors

For more information, or to speak with the Scopus development team, please contact Stuart Mayell, Jon Cope, Rachel Sweeting or Claire Jackson at the Scopus Press Office on +44 (0) 20 7009 2835 or email

About Elsevier
Elsevier ( is a world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and services. Working in partnership with the global science and health communities, the company publishes more than 1,800 journals and 2,200 new books per year, in addition to offering a suite of innovative electronic products, such as ScienceDirect® and MD Consult, bibliographic databases, online reference works and subject specific portals.

Elsevier is a global company headquartered in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and has offices worldwide. The company is part of Reed Elsevier Group plc, a world-leading publisher and information provider. Operating in the science and medical, legal, education and business-to-business sectors, Reed Elsevier provides high-quality and flexible information solutions to users, with increasing emphasis on the Internet as a means of delivery. Reed Elsevier’s ticker symbols are REN (Euronext Amsterdam), REL (London Stock Exchange), RUK and ENL (New York Stock Exchange).

About Elsevier
Elsevier is a world-leading provider of information solutions that enhance the performance of science, health, and technology professionals, empowering them to make better decisions, deliver better care, and sometimes make groundbreaking discoveries that advance the boundaries of knowledge and human progress. Elsevier provides web-based, digital solutions — among them ScienceDirect, Scopus, Elsevier Research Intelligence and ClinicalKey— and publishes over 2,500 journals, including The Lancet and Cell, and more than 33,000 book titles, including a number of iconic reference works. Elsevier is part of RELX Group plc, a world-leading provider of information solutions for professional customers across industries.

For more information, or to speak with the Scopus development team, please contact Stuart Mayell, Jon Cope, Rachel Sweeting or Claire Jackson at the Scopus Press Office on +44 (0) 20 7009 2835 or email