New in MPG/SFX: "View this record in Web of Science"

Wouldn’t it be nice if the MPG/SFX service menu for a specific journal article includes a link to the corresponding record in the Web of Science – to provide you with an easy option to lookup cited references, citing articles and related publications? It took us a while to implement, but we finally came up with this:

screen shot of new sfx service
Example MPG/SFX menu:

The target title ("Web of Science") links to the appropriate full record view and the "Times Cited" count to the citing articles page in the Web of Science (WoS). Please note that access to the WoS database requires a subscription, but all users from the Max Planck Society should have access from their workplace.

The above information is fetched on request by using Thomson Reuters new Links Article Match Retrieval Service (AMR). Our implementation for SFX is a bit preliminary and the service fails to identify the WoS record under certain circumstances (e.g inaccurate or incomplete metadata). Some detailed testing will be done next week, but your feedback is always welcomed!

12 thoughts on “New in MPG/SFX: "View this record in Web of Science"”

  1. Is this really implemented yet? I haven’t seen any “View this record in Web of Science” information in any MPG/SFX menu, except for the example you provided. Or are the “certain circumstances” actually the rule rather than the exception?

  2. @Martin de la Iglesia: As I said before, the service hasn’t been tested thoroughly until now. Therefore, we have no reliable insights into how often it is displayed or not. Obviously, the lookup is more successful if an article identifier is available, e.g.: – OpenURL with doi – OpenURL with pmid

    … but it works for other requests also, e.g. – OpenURL from CSA – OpenURL from Ovid

    BTW: The service is currently not displayed for OpenURL requests originated from the WoK because this would be redundant.

    However, there is definitely room for improvement…

  3. @Jonathan Rochkind: Thanks for pointing to the corresponding service by Scopus, but we haven’t licensed access to this database. It looks like Elsevier is a bit more "generous" than Thomson Reuters: Users without a subscription can have a peek on citing articles for free, see Cited by example. Wow, but I guess access to the API requires a subscription?

  4. Glad to see that TR has finally provided these linking capabilities!
    I would, however, like to suggest a slighty different presentation of these new (and perhaps older) services:

    Relevant Links
    * For additional NCBI Links, view this record in PubMed
    * For cited references and more, view this record in Web of Science
    * Papers which cite this record (in journals covered by WoS): 22

    This would allow the integration of future services and would remain valid even when not all services are possible.
    Does anyone agree?

  5. Ha, I just noticed another reason for the absence of the service. Our lookup uses a pretty harsh timeout (2 sec) to avoid that the display of the SFX menu is delayed for too long. This worked perfectly while the initial testing of the implementation because the WoS service tended to answer within a second. But the response times have increased by now! Hm, I will add another second…

  6. There are some things you can do with Scopus without a subscription (quite a few actually), but I’m not sure if those things alone would be worthwhile or not. My goal was to advertise and increaese ‘access points’ to the services we already subscribe to, I haven’t thought/analyzed whether there’s something useful you can do with Scopus without a subscription. We subscribe to both Scopus and ISI here.

    But it’s quite possible there are useful things you can do without a subscription, let us know if you end up investigating!

  7. And I’ve ALWAYS had problems with slowness of response from the ISI API.

    Within the Umlaut architecture that we’re using on top of SFX, it’s possible to deliver the initial page with SFX kb results, while other services are still running in the background, and then have the backgrount results added as they come in (either with javascript, or with a manual click to ‘see more stuff’ for non-js browsers).

    That’s one aspect of Umlaut that makes it more feasible to include a lot of services like this ISI one. We include all sorts of stuff, confident that it won’t slow down the initial page with SFX kb results.

  8. @Inga: OK, now I know why I didn’t see any WoS links: I had only tried in WoK. I hadn’t expected the service to be so smart as to ignore requests from WoK. Good work indeed.

  9. @Ben: Thanks for sharing your ideas regarding the presentation of the new service. Some remarks:

    1. Heading: All links offered by the MPG/SFX server are "relevant", but the software groups them according to the type of service they provide. A heading is defined for each service category, i.e. the "Cited Record" section bundles services related to the initial reference (= cited metadata record). I changed the associated heading to "Reference" to avoid the term "Cited", but "Relevant Links" would be a bit too unspecific to me.

    2. Target descriptions: Texts have been revised according to your suggestions, see

    3. Splitting service: In general, it’s possible to split the new “Web of Science” service into two entries in the MPG/SFX menu, but this requires some additional programming and configuration. Please note that Thomson’s AMR documentation specifies exactly how links to the WoS should be displayed on the user interface. Links to citing articles pages should be offered as "View citing articles in Web of Science®", but I probably could add a note like "(in journals covered by WoS)". As a workaround, I moved the "Times Cited" information to the notes of the existing service, see

    Hm, I’m not sure if I really like that. The initial implementation already combined the "Web of Science®" trademark with the Times Cited count – which was pretty elegant from my point of view…

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