Skip to content

Search for Research Data

Search the ANDS Site


Introduction to data citation indices

Formal publication and citation of data supports the recognition of research data as a first class research output. As data citation becomes more firmly entrenched in research practice, it has become possible for citation indices to measure the reuse of research data thereby enabling recognition and reward of data publishing. This is analogous to the use of products such as Web of Science and Scopus to measure citations to journal articles and other types of scholarly publications. Such metrics are commonly used for performance appraisal and reporting.

Benefits to your organisation of having your data outputs tracked through data citation indices include:

  • capitalising on investments in data management capability
  • representation in globally recognised citation indexing services
  • ability to track reuse of institutional data assets
  • increased visibility of institutional data assets.

Data Citation Index on the Web of Science

At the present time, the Data Citation Index is the only commercial product offering data citation tracking and reporting. The Data Citation Index indexes a number of the world's leading data repositories in order to support data discovery, reuse and dissemination of research data. Learn how your records in Research Data Australia can be included in the Data Citation Index.

It enables users to:

  • discover data held in repositories across the globe
  • track the use and citation of research data across multiple disciplines
  • get a more complete view of scholarly research output beyond article publications only.

Data Citation Index

Make Data Count

The Make Data Count (MDC) project funded by the Sloan Foundation has delivered a data usage metric standard (COUNTER Code of Practice for Research Data) and a workflow for the retrieval and display of standardised usage and citation metrics in a repository interface.

There is no dollar cost to institutions wishing to implement the MDC Code and workflow so that their repository pages can display information about:

  • Views and Downloads: Internal logs are processed against the Code of Practice and send standard formatted usage logs to a DataCite hub for public use and eventually, aggregation.
  • Citations: Citation information is pulled from Crossref Event Data.

Read, watch and learn more about Make Data Count.


Altmetrics refers to a range of measures such as number of views, number of downloads, social media 'likes' and recommendations. Such metrics are becoming increasingly common across a range of data publishing models including data repositories and data journals.

Because of their immediacy, altmetrics can be an early indicator of the impact or reach of a dataset, before the long tail of formal citation metrics can be assessed. Digital Science's Altmetric service aggregates online attention for research outputs, such as mainstream and social media, online reference managers, Wikipedia, blogs, F1000 and public policy documents. Scientific Data is one data journal that displays Altmetric scores for data.