Publish or Perish in the news

The development of the Publish or Perish software is a volunteering effort that has been ongoing since 2006. Publish or Perish was designed to help individual academics to present their case for research impact and tenure and promotion to its best advantage, even if you have very few citations. You can also use it to decide which journals to submit to, to prepare for a job interview, to do a literature review, to do bibliometric research, to write laudatios or obituaries, or to do some homework before meeting your academic hero. Publish or Perish is a real Swiss army knife.

The Publish or Perish software is used and praised in more than 80 countries. Users include individual academics and librarians, governments departments (e.g. US Dept of Energy, US Dept of Veteran Affairs, US Environmental Protection Agency, US Agency for International Development), inter-governmental organisations (e.g. the Worldbank, United Nations), grant giving agencies (e.g. SSHRC in Canada, CNRS in France), and research laboratories (e.g. Microsoft, Hewlett Packard, IBM). More than 800 libraries in more than 60 countries now recommend Publish or Perish.

It is widely used at highly ranked universities such as Harvard, Stanford, MIT, Oxford, and Cambridge, universities that have comprehensive access to commercial alternatives. However, it is even more satisfying to see its equally high use at under-resourced universities in countries such as Armenia, Botswana, Mongolia, Paraguay, Tajikistan, and Uruguay.

Referencing Publish or Perish

If you are using the Publish or Perish software in one of your research articles or otherwise want to refer to it, please use the following format:

Harzing, A.W. (2007) Publish or Perish, available from

News coverage for Publish or Perish

Publish or Perish has received very frequent news coverage. A small selection of both recent and older publications:

  • An article published in România Liberă, one of the leading newspapers in Romania, suggests readers to use Publish or Perish to assess the relevance of academics and promote a more meritocratic system of appointment in universities and other academic bodies.
  • Publish or Perish used in an article in Science to source citation scores for academics with active Twitter profiles.
  • Blog on the LSE Impact of Social Sciences blog advocating a more inclusive way to rank academics by using career-based citation metrics.
  • Related coverage on predatory open access publishers in Scams rock academic publishing.
  • Five minutes with Anne-Wil Harzing, an interview about Publish or Perish on the LSE Impact of Social Sciences blog.
  • An article published in The Italian newsmagazine l'Espresso, one of the two most prominent Italian weeklies, used Publish or Perish to expose nepotism in Italian academia.
  • The Italian newspaper Linkiesta used Publish or Perish to compare the academic credentials of ministers in the new Monti government with those in the old Berlusconi government.
  • Times Higher Education, "Free app has the cite stuff for REF", in which LSE Professor Patrick Dunleavy favours it over peer review for the British Research Assessment.
  • The Australian's Higher Education supplement in January 2008 and again in April 2011, June 2011 and April 2015.
    • Anne-Wil Harzing's Publish-or-Perish is a great asset that gives you a quick snapshot of any scholar you want to research. Indeed, I was doing a teleconference with the president of one of the major European universities last week and while we were talking he was using this program to scan my work and its citations; I was doing the same with his work!
    • Professor Dunleavy is an advocate of a system developed by University of Melbourne academic Anne-Wil Harzing that he said was used extensively by universities in Europe and Britain.
    • University of NSW marketing professor Ian Wilkinson, who feared the Australasian journal for his field might not survive a Thomson-dominated RQF, is an admirer of Publish or Perish and has urged the Government to look at it.
  • The Association for Psychological Science, "Publish or Perish: Grade yourself and persist"
  • The Hindu, online edition of India's national newspaper

Reviews for the Publish or Perish Book

  • Impact of Social Sciences blog "Harzing's book is an excellent introduction to the complex world of article level citation data. I would highly recommend it for any researcher who wishes to understand this growing field, and it is full of practical advice."
  • Nature, the international weekly journal of science (Dec 2010): “The Publish or Perish Book is a useful resource for scientists, particularly in fields in which Google Scholar is a major source of citations.
  • Journal of the American Society for Information Science & Technology (April 2011): "Harzing’s book is a useful, thoughtfully written, and highly informative source on a particular implementation of citation analysis .."
  • Scientometrics (April 2011): "Harzing has certainly created a tool which can be used to blast paths through the evaluative defenses surrounding the entrenched positions of academia."

Blogs featuring Publish or Perish

Publish or Perish has been featured on literally hundreds of blogs and personal websites in dozens of different languages. A small selection:

  • The London School of Economics Impact of Social Sciences blog in which Professor Patrick Dunleavy calls the British Research Assessment "lumbering and expensive" and pleads for the use of Publish or Perish as an alternative.
  • An Icelandic blogger praising (in English) the ease of use of Publish or Perish. "There is really no excuse for not using such a resource!"
  • Thumbs-up by a US blogger: "This is one of the coolest search tools I've seen, ever".
  • A German blog commending PoP for being "quick to install, swift to use and making bibliometrics more understandable" [translated from German].

Articles using Publish or Perish

Note: If you are using the Publish or Perish software in one of your research articles or otherwise want to refer to it, please use the following format:

Harzing, A.W. (2007) Publish or Perish, available from

Over a thousand academics have used Publish or Perish to conduct analyses for their academic papers. A small selection can be found here:

Anne-Wil's own papers using Publish or Perish

I have used Publish or Perish in a number of published books journal articles that focus on impact analysis, the introduction of new metrics, and a comparison of coverage of Google Scholar, Microsoft Academic, Scopus and the Web of Science. I have also made several white papers on these topics available on my website.

Books and journal articles

White papers

User feedback for Publish or Perish

The software is used and praised all over the world, from individual academics and librarians to governments departments (e.g. US Dept of Energy, US Dept of Veteran Affairs, US Environmental Protection Agency, US Agency for International Development), from grant giving agencies (e.g. SSHRC in Canada, CNRS in France) to research laboratories (e.g. Microsoft, Hewlett Packard, IBM). A small selection of the many thank-you messages and expressions of support that I have received over the last eleven years.

The more I work with GS the more I appreciate the gate those guys opened for us. PoP enhances GS and if I were working for Google, I would consider developing it further to become the equivalent of Google Earth.

I wanted to thank you for creating Publish or Perish and for your book. This has been absolutely instrumental in making my case for promotion to Full Professor. Your work has allowed me to regain my grasp of this process. I am very appreciative that you have provided this irreplaceable information free of charge. I know that I am not the only woman who has been discouraged in her academic aspirations who has benefited from your work.

We have benefitted from the use of Harzing’s Publish or Perish software. We have been fans of your work for some time now and have used your tools to inform our own benchmarking here at Harvard Business School.

It was a great pleasure to meet someone who has contributed so much, completely free of charge, to the development of the social sciences. Academic altruists are rare indeed, and your PoP programme is a huge advance.

As I am sure you realize, being able to demonstrate the influence of research by the Worldbank is enormously important to supporting and expanding that research. [...] I have found your software Publish or Perish to be the single most useful tool available for these purposes.

I think a lot of people have been wanting “someone” to do this for a while now. You’re that someone – kudos and thanks to you!

Many thanks for your generosity and congratulations for your work. If we didn't have your program It would be very complicated to conduct our research, because we are running this project with a shoe-string budget.

I’ve referred people to your software more times than I can count. At least within our circles, it’s recognized as the single most effective tool for calculating personal H-indices. I do not doubt that PoP is in large part responsible for the broadening interest in bibliometrics. Giving academics a tool by which to compare themselves to their peers has had a tremendous impact globally.

I am writing to thank you for offering the Publish or Perish software to the academic community at no charge, and for keeping this excellent product updated. Within our university, individual faculty members use Publish or Perish to track the impact of their work, and we find it indispensable.

A close colleague of mine told me an amusing anecdote last month about a social sciences meeting for upgrading Oxford University academics to professor, at which 17 department heads presented cases for members of their staff - all but one of whom used Harzing (PoP) statistics.

Your programme is very useful to me in my professional activity and it would be a pity to lose it. It allows a quick organization of the data presented by Google Scholar with the more relevant statistics, and this is vital today for a scientist.

I've lost words to thank you for creating such a powerful tool. I love PoP so much that when there's a newly appointed researcher, i quickly check on PoP and immediately add publications in our institutional repository. PoP harvest data from all platforms even if the work is not cited, that is the strength of this tool. Thanks a million Prof. Harzing.

‘Publish or Perish’ is a vital source of data for researchers, and has proven invaluable for Emerald in two key areas. Firstly, we utilize the data to manage the performance of our journals; by benchmarking citations against competitors, by identifying high-performance articles and for helping us to judge awards. Secondly, a central part of our service is the advice we give to early career scholars on how to maximize their chances of getting published in research journals, and pointing them towards Publish or Perish and educating them on the metrics available is a key element to this service.

This is quite amazing. You posted your message three days ago. Since then, I have received links to the software six times from my friends from all around the world who saw your message and wanted to share it with me. Obviously, Publish or Perish is getting lots of attention and obviously people like it very much.

PoP is a comprehensive tool that identifies research impact and that points to the positioning of the journals where research appears. I can, for example, say that my paper in journal ABC is the Nth highest ranked of all papers in that journal since a specific date. This type of information is invaluable. It not only shows my citation count but my count relative to others who publish in the same journals.

I didn't know which papers were the most referenced for my own work, and when discussing with other researchers, in many cases they themselves don't know. Knowledge about these matters is helpful understanding the structure of the research and the social network that surrounds it.

Publish or Perish has become an essential tool for academics around the world. In my job as an editor of a major international journal, I often need to run a quick check on colleagues, for example, wish to be considered for Board membership. PoP is perfect for such purposes.

I recently had to compile an online bibliography of work in [...] for Oxford University Press. POP was incredibly helpful for figuring out what the most cited works and scholars were in the various sub-areas I included. It would certainly have been a less useful contribution to the OUP series without POP.

What a FANTASTIC tool. Thanks for sharing it. I forwarded your msg to my Dean suggesting that your program be used to gather data to be used for promotion decisions (to full professor). This would not be the only indicator of impact/quality, but certainly an important one.

As a former chair of the International Mathematical Union's Committee on Electronic Information and Communication (CEIC) I have found it necessary to be well informed about all matters relating to citation measurement and the use of related metrics. In this setting, Publish or Perish has been avery fine tool to assist with many of the delicate and consequential issues regarding the uses and abuses of citation data.

PoP has become an academic workhorse for both doing research as well as evaluating researchers and journals (I served as the chair of the "fellows selection committee" of my professional society, where it was an important tool). I also routinely use it to find important papers in an area, or the best people working on a topic (for referees).

This software is great. Thank you so much for making it available. We have to report citations each year in my department, and everyone uses ISI themselves. As you might imagine, people don't always use it correctly. Your software would provide an easy, standardized way to count everyone the same.

As a senior academic in a non-traditional field, I've recommended your web site to a number of my colleagues. I'm always looking for non-ISI options to suggest to junior faculty looking to make the case for tenure. Your efforts are appreciated!

I have been conducting an analysis of highly cited tourism scholars using 'Publish or Perish’. The PorP programme is excellent, especially since our field of study is excluded from the Thompson ISI. and your programme provide the only valid method of assessing the contribution that individual scholars have made to the field.

Related topics

Support Publish or Perish

The development of the Publish or Perish software is a volunteering effort that has been ongoing since 2006. Download and use of Publish or Perish is and will remain free (gratis), but your support toward the costs of hosting, bandwidth, and software development are appreciated. Your support helps further development of Publish or Perish for new data sources and additional features.