Rankings based on Google Scholar Citations: Methodology

GSC Author Profiles

          Google Scholar is a free very large bibliographic database that it is especially useful for bibliometric purposes as it provides the number (and lists all of them) of citations received by the items included. Its current size is over 200 million unique documents, (many of them with links to openly available full-text versions). This is almost three times the current coverage of the paywalled competitors like WoS/Clarivate or Scopus/Elsevier.

          GS Citations is a tool for setting up author profiles of individuals and their publications as covered by GS. There are many advantages in generating your own profile using GSC. It is really very easy to use as you only need a Google account to start collecting your publications and the associated metrics. The system is very powerful and it guides you in every step offering candidate publications (with a very low error rate) and the possibility of merging, delete or adding records.

          GSC profile should be voluntarily created by a person, the author or if he/she is already dead by another individual whishing to make an homage by recording his/her scientific publications.

          There are several presentations with easy instructions that can help you in the process. We cite these two slides collections in English and Spanish:

          * How to set up your Google Scholar profile in Google Scholar Citations (Sarah Goodier)
          * Como crear y mantener un perfil de investigador en Google Scholar Citations (Delgado & Orduña)

          Please, follow the following advices and take into account the warnings about nasty practices:

  • The profile should be 'public'. Otherwise nobody could access to your information or contact with you
  • If you have several email addresses for accesing your Google account, probably you have two or more Google Scholar Citations profiles. Please, delete duplicate old profiles as it is very confusing for readers and complex to maintain by yourself
  • Entries marked # means there are other profiles for the same author
  • If your name is common the best advice is to disable the automatic updating. The system could add to your profile (a lot of) papers that are signed by other scientists with a similar name
  • It is important to delete all the entries not being authored by you, as the profile can be excluded until it is cleaned
  • Contact with your colleagues or co-authors if you discover they are not maintaning properly their profiles

  • Identify yourself with your standard signature name (not inverse)
  • Add the ORCID identifier, with the following syntax without blank spaces (ORCID:1234-56789-8765-4321)
  • Provide information about your affiliation, including institution name and country
  • Use an institutional email account, not an anonymous one like hotmail, yahoo or gmail
  • Use keywords in English (about 5) for allowing comparisons with international colleagues
  • Preferably, neither general terms (physics, chemistry, medicine) nor very specific ones

GSC Institutional Profiles

          Only Google Scholar can create an institutional profile. If your university or institution is not included you should contact directly with Google Scholar. asking for setting it up. If the institutional profile is not including all the public profiles of your faculty members, please check the pending omnes have an standard instititutional name in the affiliattion AND an institutional email address.

          There is no problem in using other alphabets or acronyms if an alternative normalized latin alphabet version is provided too.

Information about the updates

          The rankings are updated irregularly, without a fixed frequency. When the number of new profiles reach a 'critical mass' or an important mistake is discovered, then the data for the full list of the country scientists is collected. Although Google Scholar database is updated daily and many profiles can change abruptly in a few days it is both not feasible and not fair (for comparison purposes) to refresh individual accounts. Please, take into account that in fact changes can affect to many profiles and even a large increase in your citations or h-index personal count could mean you are losing ranks in the list when comparing with others with a faster growing rate!.

           Individual updating will be unfair with the rest of colleagues.