How Scopus links articles and data through the Scholix initiative
Scopus is an abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature including scientific journals, books and conference proceedings from more than 5000 publishers. The database is available by subscription from Elsevier. In 2017, Scopus became an early adopter of the Scholix initiative to enable linking of scholarly publications with datasets.

Scopus is interested in providing access to as many types of research output as possible, so expanding to research data is a natural step. This collaboration with Scholix allows Scopus to measure the level of interest its users have in research data and understand where they find the most value. 

How does it work?
The Data-Literature Interlinking Service (DLI) is an aggregator and query service across all Scholix participants. This DLI service populates and provides access to a graph of dataset-literature links collected from a variety of major data centers, publishers, and research organisations. Through collaboration with the DLI service, Scopus is able to link articles in their database with datasets (where available) in external data repositories. This is achieved by matching identifiers (such as DOIs). 

Here’s how it works:
Step 1. A user retrieves a record about an article via a search of Scopus.
Step 2. If there is a DOI associated with the article, the Scopus web app uses it to query the DLI service for links between that publication and any datasets
Step 3. If the DLI service returns data-literature link information for that publication, then Scopus displays a “Related Research Data” box in the sidebar with the dataset’s author, title, publisher, and identifier with an external hyperlink.
Step 4. To access a dataset, a user clicks on the link provided (non-DOI identifiers are resolved via identifiers.org).



“The process was easy thanks to the collaboration with the DLI group. We just had to set up harvesting of the article-dataset links using the DLI API. No written agreement was required to interact with the DLI as it is an open service, but it’s been very productive to work together to achieve this goal” - Dr. Eleonora Presani, Product Manager - Scopus

Next steps
The collaboration with Scholix is only the first step for Scopus in the area of research data. In October Scopus will release a link on the search results page to find related results on DataSearch, which is an Elsevier search engine specialized in searching research data. This will complement the current collaboration with Scholix which is limited to viewing data related to specific articles. Future collaboration with PlumX Analytics will also help define metrics around research data and their correlation with articles.

Scopus is looking forward to hearing from users to better understand the ways they would want to use research data and what they would expect from a service like Scopus. This will help develop a strong roadmap of services that will allow researchers to add datasets to their CVs; universities to showcase their data output as well as their article output; and funding bodies to evaluate proposals and measure success based also on research data, and not just publications.

The more publishers collaborate with Scholix, the easier it will be to connect publications with data and provide value around research data. If you are a publisher and would like to use the Scholix initiative to link scholarly articles in your database with datasets in data repositories, please join the Scholix working group (to make sure your needs/aspirations are noted) and then use the DLI API.