Two new kids on the block: Crossref and Dimensions

Compares publication and citation coverage in the Crossref and Dimensions with Google Scholar, Microsoft Academic, Scopus and Web of Science

[Drawing kindly shared by Dasapta Erwin Irawan ]

After a whole string of publications on Google Scholar as a source of citation data and three articles about Microsoft Academic in 2016 and 2017, it has been a bit quiet in terms of my research on citation analysis. Today, however, I am proud to announce a new article forthcoming in Scientometrics which compares publication and citation coverage for no less than six data sources.

  • Harzing, A.W. (2019) Two new kids on the block: How do Crossref and Dimensions compare with Google Scholar, Microsoft Academic, Scopus and the Web of Science?, Scientometrics, vol. 120, no. 1, pp. 341-349. Available online... - Publisher's version [free to read]


In the last three years, several new (free) sources for academic publication and citation data have joined the now well-established Google Scholar, complementing the two tradi­tional commercial data sources: Scopus and the Web of Science. The most important of these new data sources are Microsoft Academic (2016), Crossref (2017) and Dimensions (2018). Whereas Microsoft Academic has received some attention from the bibliometric community, there are as yet very few studies that have investigated the coverage of Crossref or Dimensions. To address this gap, this brief letter assesses Crossref and Dimensions coverage in comparison to Google Scholar, Microsoft Academic, Scopus and the Web of Science through a detailed investigation of the full publication and citation record of a single academic, as well as six top journals in Business & Economics.

Overall, this first small-scale study suggests that, when compared to Scopus and the Web of Science, Crossref and Dimensions have a similar or better coverage for both publications and citations, but a substantively lower coverage than Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic. If our findings can be confirmed by larger-scale studies, Crossref and Dimensions might serve as good alternatives to Scopus and the Web of Science for both literature reviews and citation analysis. However, Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic maintain their position as the most comprehensive free sources for publication and citation data.

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