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Research Impact

Author-level Metrics

Author-level metrics attempt to quantify the impact of a researcher as a whole by analyzing the total citations across an individuals' publication history.

There are a few ways to measure an authors' impact:

  1. Total Publication Counts: the total number of publications authored by a researcher
  2. Total Citation Counts: the number of times a researchers' publications have been cited by others
  3. Author Field Weighted Citation Impact: the average FWCI of an author based on their publication history since 1996.
  4. H-index: a measure of the productivity and impact of a researcher

Total publication counts, total citation counts and h-index are available in Web of Science, Scopus or Google Scholar. While FWCI of individual articles are available in Scopus, researchers may also make use of SciVal, another NUS Libraries subscribed database, to quickly find the FWCI at author level.


H-index was developed by Jorge E. Hirsch in 2005 to measure both the productivity and impact of a researcher. A researcher has index of h if he or she has h number of publications, in which each publication has been cited at least h times. For example, a researcher who has an h-index of 8, has at least 8 publications which have each been cited at least 8 times. 

Diagram from Wikimedia Commons is in the Public Domain

Author Field Weighted Citation Impact

Similar to FWCI at article level, which looks at the relative impact of an article when compared to similar publications, author level FWCI can be used to look at the impact of a researcher based on their publication history, i.e.:

  • A FWCI value of 1 means that the author has an impact equals to other authors
  • A FWCI value of >1 means that the author has publications that are cited cited more than the average, e.g. FWCI of 2.10 means 2.1 times more cited than the average.
  • A FWCI value of <1 means that the author has publications that are cited less than the average, e.g. FWCI of 0.85 means 15% less cited than average


Sources of Author-level Metrics

Scopus can be used to generate Citation Overviews that allows you to easily look at the total number of publications authored by a researcher, the number of citations for each publication and the author H-index. You can even exclude self-citations in the calculation of the total citation counts or H-index. These metrics are derived based on the publications indexed by Scopus.

Go to Scopus and search for any author by last name, first name or affiliation under Author Search.

Select the relevant author record in the author results page. Click on 'View citation overview'


The citation overview will display the number of documents, total citation counts an H-index of the author. You can choose to exclude self-citations. Scroll down to look at the citations accrued by each publication across the years. You can also export the data out into an excel file.


Citation Reports generated from from Web of Science allows you to easily look at the total publications authored by a researcher and the number of citations accrued by these publications. These metrics are derived based on  the publications indexed by Web of Science.

Go to Web of Science and search for any author by Last Name and First Name under Researchers Search

Depending on your search, you may retrieve multiple author records. Select the relevant author record by looking at the affiliations, list of recent publications and top journals.

This will bring you to the author record. You can look at the Metrics box, or click on the Dashboard for more information, or click on View Citation Report for a full list of the publications and citation counts.

The Citation Report will provide you with the author's total number of publications indexed in Web of Science, the sum of times cited and the author h-index. You can scroll down to look at the citation details for each publication, or export the data out into excel file.



Google Scholar provides authors with a way to collate all publication and citation information indexed by Google via Google Scholar profiles. With a Google Scholar profile, you can see your list of publications, your total citation counts based on Google Scholar's indexed publications, and your h-index.


SciVal is a database that can be used to evaluate the research performance of a researcher and generate other metrics that are not available in Scopus or Web of Science. The underlying data used for analysis by SciVal is based on Scopus publication data.

SciVal is a powerful and complex database that can be used in a variety of ways. This section will show you how to calculate an author's FWCI using the Benchmarking module in SciVal. Using the same steps, you can also generate other metrics like percentage of cited publications, percentage of publications in top journal percentiles, outputs in top citation percentiles etc. To use SciVal, you will need to create your own Elsevier account. To learn more about SciVal's other functions and other available metrics, you can refer to these links here:

  1. SciVal Quick Start Guide by Elsevier
  2. Research Metrics Guidebook by Elsevier

To quickly generate author-level metrics on Scival, Go to SciVal's Benchmarking Module. Click on the second entity type "Researchers and Groups" and select "Define a new researcher"


Search for an author by last name and first name, similar to how you would search for an author in Scopus. Click on search.


Select the relevant author record, click on 'Directly go to Save Researcher', and click on 'Save and Finish'


Back at the benchmarking module, click on the table view and select the + icon to choose the metrics that you are interested in.

Drag and drop metrics from the left to the table on the right and select 'Update metrics'. You can select up to 25 metrics at a time. The benchmarking module will now be updated with the metrics you have chosen. From there, you can click on the name of the metrics from the table header to fine tune the metric's settings.



There are two ways to search for institutions: (1) Select institutions, universities or commercial companies directly within SciVal; or, if unavailable (2) define such research institutes as a publication set in Scopus first, and export the Scopus publication set to SciVal. Method number (2) assumes that authors include their research institutes' name as their affiliations during publishing. This method is thus an approximation that tries to retrieve a representative sample of publications from the institute.

The subsections below will go through the steps to retrieve commonly requested metrics for institutes and research centres.

Section 1: Defining a Publication Set in Scopus and Exporting Publication Set to SciVal

To do so, you can begin your search in Scopus (however, if you already have a list of publication DOIs, you may skip to Section 3).

You may search for affiliations using the "Affiliation" search fields and searching for the name of your research institute. In some cases, you may need to experiment by using other name variants in your search. You may also use quotation marks " " to search for the name of the institute as a phrase. In addition, if your research institute has a common name, you may make use of the "Affiliation Country" search fields as well.


This will generate a list of publications from the research institute. Make use of the various filters, e.g. Year, Document types etc to help refine your search.


When you have retrieved the publications, select all of the publications and click on the arrow beside export.


Scopus allows you to export publication sets to SciVal directly by selecting SciVal as your method of export.


This will bring you to SciVal where you'll be able to save a name for the publication set. You'll need an Elsevier account to use SciVal.


Section 2: Import Scopus Publication Set to SciVal and Search for Metrics

Alternatively, if you already have a list of publications in excel format with a full list of DOIs, you may also click on the "Add new" and "Import a Publication Set". Make sure you are already at the benchmarking module of SciVal and at the Publication Sets entity type.


Paste the list of DOIs here to create your publication set.


As mentioned earlier, now that you have the publication sets defined, you'll be using the publication set as an entity to represent the research outputs of a research institute. You'll then be able to select the relevant metrics required by clicking on the button for "Add multiple / manage metrics". Make sure you are at the "Table" view in the benchmarking module.


Browse from the list of metrics on the left and drag and drop them to the table on the right.


SciVal will automatically generate the metrics for the publication sets in the benchmarking table. If you have multiple research institutes, you may repeat all these steps to generate publication sets for each institute.


You may also adjust the metrics settings if required, e.g. limit to certain publication types, exclude self-citations, edit CiteScore to SJR etc if required. Just click on the respective metric's name and edit the settings directly.

If you need to tweak the years to retrieve metrics for publications from certain years, you may make use of the year filters at the top of the page.


Section 3: Generating h-index for publication sets

SciVal unfortunately is unable to generate h-index for publication sets automatically. One method to overcome this is to export the publications from SciVal/Scopus directly and manually count the h-index yourself. An alternative would be to rely on Scopus to help you generate the h-index. At the point where you have searched for the research institutes and used the search filters, select "All" and click on "view Citation Overview".

*Do note that h-index is better suited for comparing the citations and impact of researchers against other researchers within the same discipline and academic seniority. The use of h-index for institutions, publication sets or other purposes should only be adopted as an approximation and estimate*


You'll be able to find the h-index at the top right of the page.