Web of Science

Information about Web of Science searches

The Web of Science search pane in Publish or Perish allows you to perform a Web of Science search and analyse its results; it contains a structured version of the parameters accepted by Web of Science. Publish or Perish uses these parameters to perform a Web of Science search, which is then analyzed and converted to a number of statistics. The results are available on-screen and can also be copied to the Windows clipboard (for pasting in other applications) or saved to a text file (for future reference or further analysis).

Web of Science subscription required

You (or the organization that you work for) will need a Web of Science subscription before you can run Web of Science queries. You will then have to sign in to Web of Science to create a new session. For detailed instructions, see Web of Science sign in.

How to perform a Web of Science search

To perform a Web of Science search:

  1. Enter the relevant parameters in the various fields (see below for an explanation of each parameter);
  2. Click Search or press the Enter key.

The program will now contact Web of Science to obtain the citations, process the list, and calculate the citation metrics, which are then displayed in the results list. The full list of results is also available for inspection or modifications and can be exported in a variety of formats.


This pane contains the following fields.

Option Description

Enter the names of the authors you want to look up. For Web of Science searches (only), you should enter the author names as Lastname, Initial.

For general tips on search syntax, see Author search.


Enter the range of years in which the papers must have been published. You can set either year to 0 (zero) to indicate "don't care".


Enter the affilations that you want to search for. For tips on search syntax, see Affiliation search.


Enter the name of the publication or journal you want to look up. For tips on search syntax, see Journal search.


Enter the ISSNs of the journals you want to look up. The ISSNs must use the format dddd-dddd, i.e., 4 digits, a hyphen, and another 4 digits.

Title words

Enter words from the title of the article that you want to look up. For tips on search syntax, see General/keyword search.


Enter any additional words that must appear alone or in combination in the title, abstract, or main text of the returned papers. This can be used to narrow down the search for a specific set of papers. For tips on search syntax, see General/keyword search.


Perform the search. If possible, the search is satisfied from the local Publish or Perish cache; this saves time and reduces the load on Web of Science. If no cache entry for the search exists or the entry is older than the maximum cache age, then the search is forwarded to Web of Science. After the results are received from Web of Science, the local cache is automatically refreshed.

Search Direct

Submit the search directly to Web of Science, bypassing the local Publish or Perish cache. This may be useful if you suspect that Web of Sciencemay have newer information than is available through the local cache. When the results are returned from PubMed, the local cache is automatically refreshed.

Note: It is not useful to perform multiple direct lookups for the same search shortly after another; this merely increases the load on Web of Science. We recommend that you only use the Lookup Direct function as a last resort.

Clear All Clears all query fields. You can use this to quickly prepare the fields for an entirely new query.
Revert Restores the query fields to their previous state. This function is only available as long as you have not performed a lookup with the current query fields.
New Creates a new search using the same initial search parameters as the current one. You can use this, for example, to create multiple related searches: either the same search parameters submitted to different data sources, or variations of the parameters to the same data source.