, Volume 109, Issue 3, pp 2165–2179 | Cite as

The challenges to expand bibliometric studies from periodical literature to monographic literature with a new data source: the book citation index

  • Wolfgang Glänzel
  • Bart Thijs
  • Pei-Shan Chi


This study aims to gain a better understanding of communication patterns in different publication types and the applicability of the Book Citation Index (BKCI) for building indicators for use in both informetrics studies and research evaluation. The authors investigated the differences not only in citation impact between journal and book literature, but also in citation patterns between edited books and their monographic authored counterparts. The complete 2005 volume of the Web of Science Core Collection database including the three journal databases and the BKCI has been processed as source documents. The results of this study show that books are more heterogeneous information sources and addressed to more heterogeneous target groups than journals. Comparatively, the differences between edited and authored books in terms of the citation impact are not so impressive as books versus journals. Advanced models and indicators which have been developed for periodicals also work for books—however with some limitations.


Book citation index Citation distribution Citation pattern Citation ageing 



This paper is based on previous works which are done at ECOOM and presented at the fifteenth ISSI Conference in Istanbul (Chi et al. 2015) and the twentieth STI Conference in Lugano (Glänzel and Chi 2015). The authors thank Wouter Jeuris for structuring a database with WoS data provided by Thomson Reuters.


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.KU Leuven, ECOOM and Dept. MSILeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Library of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Department of Science Policy & ScientometricsBudapestHungary

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