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Key citation databases

Key databases for citation tracking include Web of ScienceScopus, and Google Scholar.

Hanken subscribes to Web of Science and Scopus (available through Hanna). Google scholar is freely accessible, but you need to activate the library’s link and log in to Hanna to access licensed materials.

In a citation database, you get information not only about who has cited an article, but also about how many times an author has been cited. You can also list all articles citing the same source.

While all sources of citation data are continually trying to extend their coverage, a single database cannot index all the world's scholarly publications. And coverage in different disciplines is different. For example, the coverage of the arts and humanities may be less comprehensive, especially for books.

Generally, Web of Science and Scopus offer good coverage of sciences and social sciences, with less emphasis on humanities. Google Scholar covers all disciplines equally well, and captures 'grey literature' such as policy papers and technical reports in addition to journals. But  the criteria for inclusion in Google Scholar are not wholly transparent.

Web of Science

  • Owned and produced by Clarivate Analytics. 
  • Includes the Science Citation Index - SCI, Social Sciences Citation Index - SSCI, and Arts and Humanities Citation Index - AHCI.
  • Aims to include the best journals of all fields.
  • Includes citations starting from the year 1945, but Hanken has access only to citations starting from 1986.
  • The Citation Report is easy to generate, but only counts references to articles that are also in the database.


  • Owned and produced by Elsevier.
  • A multidisciplinary database that covers about 23,000 journals. Indexes more journals than Web of Science and includes some conference proceedings, which results in better coverage for Economics and IT.
  • Only indexes citations starting from 1996, and only counts references to publications that are also in the database.

Google scholar

  • In theory, Google Scholar is able to index all sciences in all fields on the Internet.
  • Journal article coverage is not as good as the above in their core fields.
  • Has better overall coverage in fields where conference publications are important. 
  • Disadvantage for materials published prior to 1990.