Following many requests for more citation metrics, we have now introduced a second page of the Citesummary on INSPIRE where you can find additional columns excluding self-cites and citations to the Review of Particle Physics. You can access this extended Citesummary page via a link at the bottom of the first Citesummary page. Furthermore, we have provided some more detailed explanations of the various citation metrics; you can find them here or via a link on the Citesummary page.

Try the new metrics and tell us how you like them or if you would like some additional metrics at  
We are working on expanding our horizons in regard to citation counts. In addition to the SPIRES tradition of tracking citations to arXiv eprints and published journal articles, we are now starting to track citations to report numbers and conference proceedings, for example
This is a complex task and will take a bit longer. We will be able to offer a better service of citation analysis and interlinking to and from additional material, such as unpublished papers which did not appear on arXiv, theses and experimental notes.

As this work is ongoing you might be interested in the current citation stats of INSPIRE. We can currently track over 700,000 citeable papers out of 960,000 records overall. Of these 0.06% have over 1,000 citations, 0.24% have over 500 citations and 3.3% have over 100 citations.

Interested in more stats? Check here! Interested in searching for highly cited papers? Just use topcite, e.g. find topcite 5000+ or combine it with another search parameter, e.g. find t top quark and topcite 1000+ 

By the way – our algorithms are not perfect, yet, and can miss citations especially when figures or tables appear in the middle of reference lists, so you can help us by correcting references and citations yourself on INSPIRE. For details, please see: Please note that we’re a bit slow at the moment as we’re still completing the back office transition to INSPIRE, so it may take a few weeks for us to process your corrections but rest assured we will get to them.

Citations are of interest to the HEP community as a way of finding new papers on a topic of interest. It is therefore natural to want to find the latest citations of your own papers in order to learn of the latest developments in your field. In SPIRES this was almost impossible to do, as you had to look for new citations of each of your papers. INSPIRE is more sophisticated and allows you to do second-order searches that let you find papers citing a particular set of papers, for example those written by an author of interest: find refersto author e.witten.1 or in Invenio form refersto:author:e.witten.1

Every INSPIRE search has a link at the bottom that enables you to track the result in an RSS feed. You can then get daily RSS updates through, e.g. Google Reader or the built-in RSS readers of Internet Explorer and Firefox.  Doing this, you’ll be able to easily keep track of new citations to an author as they appear. As an aside, note that we have used the INSPIRE author identity, E.Witten.1, rather than just a name to make sure the search is unique.

This will work for searches beyond “author”. For example you could find the papers citing work done by your institution: find refersto aff “princeton u.” and then narrow that down to only citations of your institution by another institution: find refersto aff “princeton u.” and af oxford u. You basically have the full power of INSPIRE searching at your disposal.

Sometimes you only want, for example, published articles or theory papers. INSPIRE has two search terms to help with this:

1. type code, tc, lets you specify the type of paper:
b  Book,
c  Conference paper,
l   Lectures,
p  Published,
r   Review,
t   Thesis,
e.g. find t quark and tc p and tc r or find cn atlas not tc c

2. field code, fc, lets you specify what field you are interested in (based on arXiv categories but extended to non-eprints):
a   Astrophysics
b   Accelerators
c   Computing
e   Experiment-HEP
g   Gravitation and Cosmology
i    Instrumentation
l    Lattice
m  Math and Math Physics
n   Theory-Nucl
o   Other
p   Phenomenology-HEP
q   General Physics
t    Theory-HEP
x   Experiment-Nucl
e.g. find aff fermilab and fc b or find topcite 500+ and fc e

More search tips are available at:

When it comes to INSPIRE searching, large collaborations have two notable features: they write a lot of papers and they have a lot of authors. This can lead to two difficulties when searching:

  • Because collaborations have a lot of authors, many searches for theorists and other authors not on a collaboration will also return papers by collaborations where someone has a similar name.
  • If you are looking for papers by the full collaboration, individual members of the collaboration write a lot of conference papers and these will also show when you try to find the official results of the full collaboration.

INSPIRE can help with both of these issues using a new feature, the author-count (ac) index, introduced recently on our blog. To address challenge 1 you can limit the search to papers with less than, say, 10 authors, e.g.: find a j smith and ac 1->10

To address challenge 2 you want to restrict the result to papers with, say, greater than 100 authors, e.g.: find exp cern-lhc-atlas and ac 100+

As always, INSPIRE allows you to use author-count in all kinds of searches to get just the result you want.

P.S. You can also figure out the citation summary for the papers that, for example, Richard Feynman wrote alone with find a feynman and ac 1.

We released a new search feature helping you to narrow down your search results. Author count (keyword: ac) allows you to refine a search to show papers with a specific number of authors or a range of authors. For example “ac 5+” will only show papers with at least five authors. “ac 1” as search syntax shows you for instance papers only by a single author without any co-authors.

Just experiment with the new searching possibilities, combine it with other search field specifiers, and tell us about your experiences at

Try for example:
find a ellis and ac 1
find a ellis and ac 5+
find a ellis and ac 3->10
find exp cms and ac 1000+

INSPIRE runs on the Invenio search engine, making it much faster and more powerful than SPIRES. You have a choice among various search methods.

The easiest is “Google-like” search. There’s probably no quicker way to find a couple of papers by Thomas and Crewther about quarks in 2002 than just typing “thomas crewther quark 2002” into the search box.

Invenio syntax allows smart searches that were impossible with SPIRES. Say you’re interested in finding papers that Parke has written, and that Witten has cited, the author: and the citedby: operators are for you: author:parke citedby:author:witten“. You could alternatively look for the papers that Witten has written which refer to these papers by Parke, with the refersto: operator “author:witten refersto:author:parke

Of course, SPIRES syntax is there…to stay. Just remember to put “find” in front of your query to tell our search engine you’d like to use SPIRES-style searching. You can also use the refers to and cited by in SPIRES syntax “find date last month and refersto a ellis” to find recent papers referring to papers by Ellis.

We’ve seen from logfiles, and a few of you have contacted us (thanks!), that most people wanted SPIRES-like searching and that many searches failed because of a missing “find”. So, just remember to put “find” in front of your queries.

So why are there several ways to search in INSPIRE? Why not just accept SPIRES-style searches only? Because there are already a large fraction, though not a majority, of users who enjoy Google-like and Invenio syntaxes. Initial feedback is that those are more natural, more powerful, and/or more succinct for their purposes. So our search interface has to balance the different needs of many users, those who love the tried and tested SPIRES-style syntax and those (on the rise) who requested Google-like syntax. We strive to be useful for all.

Driven by user feedback we are working to improve the search experience for our users. We’ve made small changes, like adding a more prominent note about using “find” to trigger SPIRES searching or removing a drop-down menu with a list of search types which caused some confusion. At the same time, we are working on ways to smartly detect what syntax is meant. You might type a few words and we would try to figure out if you meant a SPIRES syntax, an Invenio one, or a Google-style one. This is nontrivial to do without sacrificing some search speed. Since many of the failed searches in our log files were author searches we’ve done a first step in that direction: a query starting with “a ” or “author ” is now interpreted as a search in SPIRES syntax. If our log files show a decrease of search failures in the near future we’ll also include other common SPIRES search terms like “t” for title.

We will continue to improve the search interface of INSPIRE – but we can only do this if we know what’s wrong. If something annoys you, we’ll cannot fix it unless you let us know. We’d much rather hear a complaint from someone who cares enough to send it than silence from someone who doesn’t care enough to help the community improve its tools.