October 28, 2021

Research Article: “Exploring WorldCat Identities as an Altmetric Information Source: A Library Catalog Analysis Experiment in the Field of Scientometrics” (Preprint)

The article (preprint vefrsion) linked to below was recently made available on arXiv.


Exploring WorldCat Identities as an Altmetric Information Source: A Library Catalog Analysis Experiment in the Field of Scientometrics


Daniel Torres-Salinas
University of Granada, Spain

Wenceslao Arroyo-Machado
University of Granada, Spain

Mike Thelwall
University of Wolverhampton


via arXiv

Note:  “This is a pre-print of an article published in Scientometrics. The final authenticated version is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11192-020-03814-w”


Assessing the impact of scholarly books is a difficult research evaluation problem. Library Catalog Analysis facilitates the quantitative study, at different levels, of the impact and diffusion of academic books based on data about their availability in libraries. The WorldCat global catalog collates data on library holdings, offering a range of tools including the novel WorldCat Identities. This is based on author profiles and provides indicators relating to the availability of their books in library catalogs.

Here, we investigate this new tool to identify its strengths and weaknesses based on a sample of Bibliometrics and Scientometrics authors. We review the problems that this entails and compare Library Catalog Analysis indicators with Google Scholar and Web of Science citations. The results show that WorldCat Identities can be a useful tool for book impact assessment but the value of its data is undermined by the provision of massive collections of ebooks to academic libraries.

Direct to Full Text Article
15 pages; PDF.

Direct to Access/Use WorldCat Identities

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.