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Scopus Content update: 75,000 book titles and counting

"If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads." — Ralph Waldo Emerson, Letters and Social Aims (1876), Quotation and Originality.

With more than 75,000 additional book titles now indexed in Scopus (and another 45,000 planned for 2015), it is easier to uncover the bounty of literature supporting great intellect.   

The arts and humanities and social sciences represent more than 55% of the 75,000 titles (see graph below). Not surprising considering 80% of arts and humanities and social sciences output is published in books instead of journals (1).

Subject area coverage for Scopus book content
In a 2013 Research Trends article, Dr. Alesia Zuccala, an Assistant Professor at the University of Copenhagen, states that “the key to sustainability [for humanities research] is to develop relevant evaluation methods…”(2).  The expanding book coverage, combined with the strength of Scopus in bibliographic search, discoverability and evaluation tools, allows you to measure the impact and scholarly achievement of the humanities in a more quantitative way — filling a gap in evaluation methods.

The improved ability to create book-based citation analyses for evaluating research is a significant development across all disciplines. The resulting expansion of author data in Scopus can enhance an author’s profile and h-index — especially if you are an author whose primary method of disseminating information is through books rather than journals.  Likewise, for administrators, expanded metrics mean you can better evaluate disparate disciplines.

The role of books in science and technology is also growing, according to Suzanne BeDell, Managing Director of Elsevier Science and Technology Books, as they “tend to present a broader view of a particular subject, bring in diverse viewpoints on that subject, and treat the subject in an interdisciplinary way.” The additional book coverage means better ability to “use data and analytics to gain insights into the world’s research trends,” something Suzanne highlights as a key developing area of interest in a recent Elsevier Connect article (3).

In summary, there is a threefold impact to including quality book content in Scopus: It significantly increases subject area coverage for book-based disciplines, fosters interdisciplinary collaboration across subject areas, and fills a gap in evaluation methods.

Next time you run a search in Scopus or view an author’s profile, look for the increase in book content.

Video: Watch how book content in Scopus leads you to further insights and information, discover key influencers in your field and identify potential collaborators.

Public book list: View a list of which books are now included in Scopus.

About the data: Providing reliable metrics requires accurate data gathered from quality sources. The books selected and indexed in Scopus must undergo a rigorous selection process before they are added (as does all Scopus content). Once selected, the Scopus content team creates the metadata directly from the full text of a title. This ensures that only the most accurate data and citation information from quality books are used. Learn more about Scopus content policy and selection criteria.

This post was contributed by Susannah Beatty-Tucker and Susanne Steiginga
Susannah's Linked in profile
Susannah Beatty-Tucker
Content Marketing and Customer Engagement Manager, Elsevier
Susanne's Linked in profile
Susanne Steiginga
Product Manager, Elsevier

  1. Linda Butler. Australian research output by field and publication category, Australian National University, 2007.
  2. Alesia Zuccala, “Evaluating the Humanities: vitalizing ‘the forgotten sciences’,” Research Trends, March 2013.
  3. Harald Boersma, “Elsevier leaders look at 2015 trends in STM publishing,” Elsevier Connect, March 2015.


  Scopus further increases interoperability with SciVal

Instantly evaluate Scopus results in SciVal

On March 25, Scopus added the ability to directly export a list of Scopus documents to SciVal, Elsevier’s benchmarking and analytics product,to enable further analysis.Available to users with access to both products, the ‘Scopus to SciVal export’ feature reduces the number of steps when using the two products together.

This new feature further increases the interoperability between Scopus and SciVal, both products within the Elsevier Research Intelligence portfolio.

Here is how the Scopus to SciVal export works:

Step 1: The user enters a search in Scopus.

Step 2: From the search result page, the user selects the desired documents and adds them to a temporary Scopus list,
by going to the 'More’ option and choosing ‘Add to My list’.


Step 3: From ‘My list’ in Scopus, the user will see the option to ‘Export a list to SciVal’.


Step 4: Once in ‘My list’ the user is able to export the temporary list by clicking on the ‘Export your list to SciVal’.
A pop-up screen will appear asking users if they want to ‘Continue to SciVal’. Selecting this automatically re-directs the user to SciVal.


Step 5: The user now has the option to save the Scopus results list in SciVal.


Step 6: Once saved, this list is automatically added to the ‘Publication Sets’ in the SciVal ‘Benchmarking’ module.
This module provides the user with advanced capabilities to perform further in-depth analysis using the exported Scopus results.In SciVal a ‘Publication Sets’ is a fixed set of publications, which is never automatically updated with new publications


Step 7: Should the user want to export the same set again, an option is given in Scopus to save the temporary list. 

Note: The Scopus ‘Export to SciVal’ option can export up to 2,000 documents and can only be used for post-1995 data.

You can share your feedback by emailing Scopus Marketing

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Release Date: 
March 25 2015

  Takeaways from the Times Higher Education MENA Universities Summit

Over the last year the MENA (Middle East and Northern Africa) region has seen very exciting developments in terms of research growth. This was further established at the inaugural Times Higher Education MENA Universities Summit that was recently held in Doha, Qatar. M'hamed Aisati (Director Content & Analytics, Elsevier) was there to talk about Scopus content and the breadth of coverage in the region.

M'hamed’s presentation gave a broad overview of the interdisciplinary scientific information available in Scopus, while stressing the value of research metrics in order to assess efficiently ongoing research and current developments – an area where Scopus plays a key role given its breadth of content and focus on quality through content selection by the independent Content Selection and Advisory Board (CSAB).

M’hamed Aisati presenting about the Scopus Content Selection and Advisory Board

M’hamed Aisati presenting about the Scopus Content Selection and Advisory Board

A proof of concept for a top-30 MENA ranking was also presented by Phil Baty (editor at large, Times Higher Education), considering all universities within a country in the MENA region (including international branch campuses, e.g. Texas A&M University at Qatar) and all articles, reviews and conference papers published in the period 2009-2013 in all subject disciplines. The purpose of this proof of concept ranking (which focused solely on citation score) was to trigger debate and engage stakeholders at the conference to further discuss and share their feedback - which was exactly what followed.

Phil Baty at the summit opening

Phil Baty at the summit opening

  The pursuit of happiness

What does it mean to be happy? On an individual level, a career, a family, a social life, a home, a hobby, education and health could define happiness. Happiness has long been a holistic approach based on the fundamental idea that material and tangible gain must be balanced with emotional and social well-being.

The International Day of Happiness is March 20th and was declared a holiday by the United Nations to celebrate the happiness of individual nations across the globe. Countries looked at Gross National Product and realized that simply looking at the bottom line in terms of income doesn’t define the well-being of the country as a whole. Social and environmental considerations are equally as important.

The Sustainable Development Solutions Network releases an annual report that measures the happiness of 150 nations around the world. According to the 2013 report, the five happiest nations are: Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, Netherlands, and Sweden.  According to the SDSN, there are six factors that had the highest impact on the results: Real GDP per capita, healthy life expectance, having someone to count on, perceived freedom to make life choices, freedom from corruption, and generosity.

The global community brings focus today on happiness as a way to celebrate a sustainable, progressive future based on income, social, and environmental success. Happiness is such a priority across so many disciplines that a Scopus search using the word alone generates more than 15,000 results.

In terms of number of documents, the top five journal in our Scopus search for happiness were Social Indicators Research, Journal of Happiness Studies, Emotion, Cognition and Emotion, and Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. The most popular article was, quite aptly, Positive psychology. An introduction. by Martin Seligman and Mihály Csikszentmihalyi (cited by 2688 documents).

Finding happiness may often seem an impossible task, yet it could be much simpler than we tend to think. As British mathematician and philosopher Bertrand Russell once wrote:

“The secret of happiness is very simply this: let your interests be as wide as possible, and let your reactions to the things and persons that interest you be as far as possible friendly rather than hostile.”

  Total eclipse of the sun (and who’s studying it)

Day will turn into darkness on Friday, March 20 during a total solar eclipse - a phenomenon which occurs when the moon's apparent diameter is larger than the sun's, blocking all direct sunlight. But no need to alarm; totality will only have a maximum duration of 2 minutes 47 seconds off the coast of the Faroe Islands.

Looking at Scopus content related to solar eclipse from 1836 to the present, it is interesting to see how scientific output is spread across an array of different disciplines, stretching from astronomy and planetary sciences to engineering, medicine, and social sciences.

Carrying significant impact upon existing energy supplies, solar eclipses are being studied by researchers across the globe. Focusing on the scientific landscape for research area “solar eclipse” in SciVal, we had a look at the top countries and institutions over the last 5 years (2010-2015). In terms of scholarly output (as well as total number of views), the leading countries are US, India and UK with 198, 107 and 66 publications respectively.

Furthermore, the top 10 institutions are all based in either US or India (with the exception of Brno University of technology).

Getting ready

Make sure not to miss this year’s total solar eclipse as you may have to wait quite long before another opportunity arises (the next total solar eclipse visible in Europe will occur on August 12, 2026).

Also, make sure to prepare accordingly: do not look at the sun directly, avoid taking selfies with your camera phone, and read the instructions by the Royal Astronomical Society on how to observe an eclipse safely.

As to what would be the most fitting soundtrack for this rare occurrence? Depending on your musical taste and mood, you could choose from a variety of options ranging from Bonnie Tyler’s "Total Eclipse of the Heart" to Pink Floyd's "Eclipse", the closing track of their iconic The Dark Side of the Moon.

  Happy Saint Patrick's Day! (+3 facts about the Irish research landscape)

Celebrating Irish culture and heritage, Saint Patrick's Day is observed every year on March 17 in commemoration of Saint Patrick (c. AD 385–461), patron saint of Ireland.

Before donning our green shirts and running to the nearest Irish pub for a pint of Guinness, we wanted to have a closer look at how Ireland is performing  in terms of scientific research and output.

Here is Ireland's overview in SciVal for the period 2012-1014:

As shown in the above chart, the color of the three-leaved shamrock also has its share in contemporary Irish research: 14.2% of all publications lie within the green subject areas (biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, agricultural and biological sciences).

Digging deeper into the Scopus-based data in SciVal, here are 3 things we found out about the Irish research landscape:

1. The top 3 institutions in terms of number of publications and total citations are: University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, University College Cork.

2. The share of Irish scientific publications in the top 10% of most cited publications worlwide is on the rise:

 3. According to SciVal’s new Trends module, Irish researchers don't only like drinking beer, they are increasingly writing about it too. Cheers!

[Word cloud visualization of keyphrases in SciVal Trends from sample search on ''beer'' limited to Ireland, based on 65 documents]

  Celebrating the ultimate pi moment

Pi Day is observed annually on March 14, commemorating the famous mathematical constant π (pi) that represents the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter.

On the occasion of Pi Day we dug through our Scopus math content: from a total of 2.3M+ results for subject area ''mathematics'', 71.4% of the content comes from journal articles, while 22.7% is derived from conference papers (compared to 82.3% and 15.1% respectively from one year ago).

You can view the complete breakdown below:

Read more about Elsevier mathematics journals and learn about free access to archived articles.

Did you know?

  • Albert Einstein's birthday also falls on March 14.

  • Pi Day 2015 is quite special, since there will be an instant when the first 10 digits of Pi are reflected on the (US) date/time format (3/14/15, 9:26:53).

  Scopus provides insights into Amsterdam’s competitive advantages

Drawing on Scopus data, the ground-breaking report Mapping Research and Innovation: Understanding Amsterdam’s Competitive Advantage was released today showing how Amsterdam is building its future on a foundation of research to create a sustainable knowledge economy.

Developed by Elsevier Analytical Services in partnership with the Urban Innovation Network, the report explores the importance of aligning research with city development policies and provides a macro picture of Amsterdam’s research base.

Using Scopus data and SciVal analytics, the report analyzes the city's competitiveness across multiple dimensions of research performance from 2004-2013. Using Amsterdam as an extended case study, it provides a holistic view of the city’s research strengths and benchmarks its performance against other European cities of comparable size (a.o. Brussels, Copenhagen, Dublin, Hamburg, and Manchester). Such insights can help policymakers and business leaders collaborate more effectively, inform corporate location decisions, and guide real estate investment strategy.

In addition, Nick Fowler (Managing Director of Elsevier’s Research Management division) will be participating in the panel discussion "Disruptive strategies for attracting investment in cities" on 11 March, 16:00 - 17:00 at Palais des Festivals in Cannes, France. Read more about the event.

Find out more

Download the report: Mapping research and Innovation: Understanding Amsterdam’s Competitive Advantage

  Librarians Do Research Too! — Download the free ebooklet

The newly available Librarians Do Research Too! is a 25-page ebooklet for Library and Information Science professionals who want to start their own research projects. This Library Connect Blueprint for Success provides inspiration, guidance and resources from a leading LIS researcher.

Author Carol Tenopir is the Chancellor’s Professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville School of Information Sciences. She is the author of five books and more than 200 journal articles, and is a frequent speaker at professional conferences. Her areas of teaching and research include: information access and retrieval, electronic publishing, the information industry, online resources, and the impact of technology on reference librarians and scientists.

Download and share Librarians Do Research Too!

Dr. Tenopir will be discussing Librarians Do Research Too! in the April 16 webinar Building a professional identity: from research to impact. Register for the webinar.

Librarians Do Research Too! by Carol Tenopir and Elsevier Library Connect is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

  '2015 Best Chinese University Ranking' report based on Scopus data

We are pleased to announce that the inaugural and recently-released "2015 Best Chinese University Ranking" report, based on evaluation by the ShanghaiRanking Consultancy (SRC), is using Scopus data and metrics from SciVal analytics. A truly exciting start to the Year of the Sheep (as 2015 is referred to by the Chinese zodiac)!

The report provides a detailed look at key research performance indicators of more than 1,000 higher education institutions across mainland China. SRC's ranking of Chinese universities offers objective benchmarking of research performance of higher education institutions, allowing research management offices and higher education agencies to make strategic decisions around policy development and investments towards building the research capabilities of these universities.

Further to SRC, Scopus data and SciVal analytics also support Times Higher Education's World University ranking, US News & World Report's Arab Region Ranking, the Financial Times' MBA Ranking and QS' Top Universities Ranking for their respective organizations' rankings.