Interactive Map Viewer

About Interactive Map Viewer

The Interactive Map Viewer visualizes geospatial data in a familiar interface.

Interactive Maps provide authors and readers with many benefits. They:

  • Enable readers to access the author's geographic data in a familiar and easy way
  • Offer more functionality than regular maps, including zoom and pan, and show data on mouseover
  • Are KML/KMZ based, allowing authors to create the file required for submission conveniently:
    • from their Geographic Information System (GIS) or Google Earth without significant reformatting or editing, or
    • by typing coordinates and selecting markers in our author tool

Interactive Maps created with the author tool typically show the research location with simple markers. Those created in a GIS system can include more detailed information in lines, shaded areas, overlays, multiple pins, mouse hover annotations and other features.

Example Articles

Content Innovation

With features such as Interactive Maps, Elsevier’s Content Innovation program gives authors the opportunity to present their work in powerful new ways. By supporting new digital formats that are commonly used in modern-day research, and adding valuable context to the article, these enrichments improve the way articles are presented online, giving readers better insights and helping authors make an impact.

Related Content Innovations:

We develop all our Content Innovation features by working with researchers. If you have any suggestions for us, or would be willing to take part in user testing, we’d like to hear from you. Just e-mail us at

Author Instructions


The Interactive Map Viewer works with files in KML or KMZ format.

Authors can create a basic KML files by specifying coordinates and selecting markers in the author tool.

Authors using Geographic Information System (GIS) can make use of more advanced features by exporting their KML/KMZ files from the system, keeping in mind the following limitations:

  • The Interactive Map Viewer makes use of Google Maps, and supports these KML elements.
  • The maximum file size is 3 Mb.
  • The maximum number of network links is 10.
  • The maximum of elements is 1000.
  • Elements cannot be time-animated.
  • 3D models are not possible.
  • Use mouseover annotations instead of a legend.


If you create your file using the author tool, the tool immediately show will display how your map will look in ScienceDirect.

Before submission, GIS users must upload their map into the author tool to verify how it will display online. There may be differences in display between GIS and the Interactive Map Viewer as the Interactive Map Viewer does not support the same features any GIS system does.


In your manuscript, you can indicate where you want the material to appear in the article, for example, by writing ‘File1 here’. After you’ve tested your file, please do not forget to upload it into the online submission system together with your article.

  • In EES, this is done in the “supplementary files” section
  • In EVISE, the file can be uploaded in the upload screen. Please select the option “Interactive Map Data (KML or KMZ)” as the submission type.

Reviewer Instructions

Reviewers will find KML/KMZ files associated with the Interactive Map Viewer in the supplementary material submitted with the manuscript. Reviewers can inspect how the Interactive Maps corresponding to the submitted files will display online by uploading them into the author tool.

  • EES: the files can be downloaded via links on the final pages of the reviewer PDF
  • EVISE: the files can be downloaded directly from the system

For more information, read the general reviewer instructions for Content Innovation.