Citations of ILL's Publications

The April 1998 meeting of the ILL Science Council asked us to measure the scientific impact of ILL publications, as part of a review of our instruments. We therefore commissioned ISI, the Institute of Scientific Information, which already supplies a yearly citation index to the ILL/ESRF library, to prepare an Institutional Report on the ILL.

This Institutional Report covers 5085 ILL publications which were cited in scientific papers between the years 1981 (when records began) through 1997. If you are within the ILL and have a PC you may download the MS-Access data file (7.6 Mbyte - click on it with the right mouse button) as well as the PC-application XITE which can display the data in many different forms (eg double-click on the "Articles", "Authors", "Organisation" or other headings and order the entries according to the number of citations, year etc.

If you are outside ILL, or don't have a PC, you can still view a list of the most cited ILL authors, or even the complete ILL author list, as well as a list of the most cited ILL publications complete with the instrument on which the work was done, but you cannot download the actual ISI data for copyright reasons. You may however download the complete list of 8800 ILL publications in EndNote format and then download a free 30-day copy of the application EndNote for either Macintosh or Windows.

Although this report contains a large amount of very interesting information, it is only one way of measuring the scientific impact of the ILL. It is important to remember that only work containing the ILL name is considered (the work of ILL scientists done elsewhere is not included). On the other hand, the report also measures the impact of work done by ILL users, and of external labs. using ILL instruments.

As with any large set of data, there are small errors, which however do not change the essentials. For example, the same scientist may be entered twice with slightly different spellings of his name or initials; this can easily be checked against the full list of author names. Again, only work cited between the 1981-1997 reference periods, in the referenced journals, and including the Institute's name, is considered. Citations of books and some other types of publications is not included.

Finally, frequencies of citation differ between different scientific fields, the number of scientists working in that field, the type of article and the actual journal in which it is published. For example, a review article in a popular journal is expected to be cited more frequently. For this reason, the expected number of citations for each publication is also given.

For more information about the value and limitations of citation indexes, please refer to the Institute of Scientific Information WWW pages.

Return to ILL's home page Alan Hewat, 8 June 1998