ACU now subscribes to Book Citation Index in Web of Knowledge

27/05/2013 – 2:47 pm
Barbara Adamson

Books traditionally have not been covered in database citation-tracking tools such as Web of Science and Scopus but that is starting to change.  In the last two years Thomson Reuters, producers of Web of Science, have added two Book Citation Indexes to their journal citation-tracking databases.  ACU now subscribes to the  Book Citation Index — Social Sciences and Humanities and the  Book Citation Index — Science.

Below are examples of how our new subscriptions to the Annual Review of Sociology and the Annual Review of Psychology can be tracked using the Book Citation Index.

If you use the Book Citation Index and search on the Annual Review of Sociology (there is a drop-down option to select  Publication Title)  then sort by Times cited – Highest to Lowest – you will find that the DiPrete article below has been the most highly cited article to date with 126 citations.  The database then allows you to look up each of these 126 citations.

DiPrete, T. A., & Eirich, G. M. (2006). Cumulative advantage as a mechanism for inequality: A review of theoretical and empirical developments Annual Review of Sociology, 32,  271-297.

The most cited article in the Annual Review of Psychology, is this one, with 697  citation as at 27 May 2013:

MacKinnon, D. P., Fairchild, A. J., & Fritz, M. S. (2007). Mediation analysis Annual Review of Psychology ,  58, 593-614.

These are actually examples of book series but if you use the Topic field to search on the word psycholog* (note that the asterisk is a truncation symbol allowing retrieval of titles with the stem “psycholog”), you will find that this book has had 691 citations as at 27 May 2013:

Wegner, D. M. (2002). Illusion of Conscious Will. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Book Series do seem to figure prominently but you can refine your results to just books.

There are some key limitations to the resource at present.  Firstly, it only goes back to 2005 (with some earlier citations) and this is not enough time to build up a huge body of citations.  Secondly, not all publishers are included at this stage.

There are more than 40 000 books in the database at present (including the Science sub-set) and 10 000 more are being added each year.  The Social and Behavioural Sciences and Arts and Humanities together account for over 60 % of the database.

You can add the Social Sciences Citation Index and the Arts and Humanities Citation Index to your search to cover journal citations as well.

Book citations can also be tracked via Google Scholar.  When searching for a book title in Google Scholar, put quotation marks around the book title to retrieve the book.  There are usually more citations retrieved when using Google Scholar.

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