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Scopus continues to add pre-1996 citations

on Mon, 12/08/2014 - 09:30

In March, we launched the Cited Reference Expansion Program to include cited references in the Scopus database going back to 1970 for pre-1996 content. Our goal is to expand the ability for users to perform long-term, extensive bibliometric and historic trend analyses – and enhance h-indices for those researchers who published pre-1996.

As of November 1st we started re-indexing content and pre-1996 archives with cited references are now loaded on a daily basis. There are currently 500,000+ pre-1996 items with cited references in Scopus. This is having a positive impact on the h-index of senior researchers, making author profiles and h-index counts for these researchers more accurate and complete.

To illustrate this content improvement, we have been tracking the number of total citations and measuring the difference of the h-index for a sample set of authors from various subject areas between June and December. The initial results show there was a significant increase (85% on average) in their h-index, which is partly due to the change of the default time window for the h-index calculation from 1996 to 1970 and the first archive items with pre-1996 citations being loaded in Scopus.

For an example of pre-1996 citations of documents in the profile of an author who is active since 1984, see the screenshot below:

Do you have any questions about the Cited Reference Expansion Program? Email us at and we’ll get back to you.