AuthorSearch() implements the Author Search API. It performs a query to search for authors and then retrieves the records of the query.

Table of Contents


class pybliometrics.scopus.AuthorSearch(query, refresh=False, verbose=False, download=True, integrity_fields=None, integrity_action='raise', count=200, **kwds)[source]

Interaction with the Author Search API.

  • query (str) – A string of the query. For allowed fields and values see

  • refresh (Union[bool, int], optional) – Whether to refresh the cached file if it exists or not. If int is passed, cached file will be refreshed if the number of days since last modification exceeds that value.

    Default: False

  • download (bool, optional) – Whether to download results (if they have not been cached).

    Default: True

  • verbose (bool, optional) – Whether to print a download progress bar.

    Default: False

  • integrity_fields (Union[List[str], Tuple[str, …], None], optional) – Names of fields whose completeness should be checked. ScopusSearch will perform the action specified in integrity_action if elements in these fields are missing. This helps avoiding idiosynchratically missing elements that should always be present (e.g., EID or source ID).

    Default: None

  • integrity_action (str, optional) – What to do in case integrity of provided fields cannot be verified. Possible actions: - “raise”: Raise an AttributeError - “warn”: Raise a UserWarning

    Default: 'raise'

  • count (int, optional) – (deprecated) The number of entries to be displayed at once. A smaller number means more queries with each query having fewer results.

    Default: 200

  • kwds – Keywords passed on as query parameters. Must contain fields and values mentioned in the API specification at

  • ScopusQueryError – If the number of search results exceeds 5000, which is the API’s maximum number of results returned. The error prevents the download attempt and avoids making use of your API key.

  • ValueError – If any of the parameters integrity_action or refresh is not one of the allowed values.

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The directory for cached results is {path}/STANDARD/{fname}, where path is specified in your configuration file, and fname is the md5-hashed version of query.

property authors

A list of namedtuples storing author information, where each namedtuple corresponds to one author. The information in each namedtuple is (eid surname initials givenname documents affiliation affiliation_id city country areas).

All entries are strings or None. Areas combines abbreviated subject areas followed by the number of documents in this subject.


ValueError – If the elements provided in integrity_fields do not match the actual field names (listed above).


Return the age of the cached file in days.

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Return the modification date of the cached file.

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Return number of remaining requests for the current key and the current API (relative on last actual request).

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Return time when current key is reset (relative on last actual request).

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Return the number of results (works even if download=False).

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The class is initialized with a search query which you can read about in Author Search Guide. An invalid search query will result in an error.

>>> from pybliometrics.scopus import AuthorSearch
>>> s = AuthorSearch('AUTHLAST(Selten) and AUTHFIRST(Reinhard)')

You can obtain a search summary just by printing the object:

>>> print(s)
Search 'AUTHLAST(Selten) and AUTHFIRST(Reinhard)' yielded 2 authors as of 2020-07-13:
    Selten, Reinhard; AUTHOR_ID:6602907525 (74 document(s))
    Selten, Reinhard; AUTHOR_ID:57213632570 (1 document(s))

To know the the number of results use the .get_results_size() method, even before you download the results:

>>> other = AuthorSearch("AUTHLAST(Selten)", download=False)
>>> other.get_results_size()

The class mostly provides a list of namedtuples storing author EIDs, which you can use for the AuthorRetrieval class, and corresponding information:

>>> s.authors[0]
[Author(eid='9-s2.0-6602907525', surname='Selten', initials='R.',
 givenname='Reinhard', affiliation='Universitat Bonn', documents=74,
 affiliation_id='60007493', city='Bonn', country='Germany',
 areas='ECON (73); MATH (19); BUSI (16)')]

It’s easy to work with namedtuples: Using pandas, you can quickly turn the results set into a DataFrame:

>>> import pandas as pd
>>> pd.set_option('display.max_columns', None)
>>> print(pd.DataFrame(s.authors))
                  eid surname initials givenname  \
0   9-s2.0-6602907525  Selten       R.  Reinhard
1  9-s2.0-57213632570  Selten       R.  Reinhard

                     affiliation  documents affiliation_id     city  country  \
0               Universität Bonn         74       60007493     Bonn  Germany
1  Southwest Jiaotong University          1       60010421  Chengdu    China

0  ECON (73); MATH (19); BUSI (16)
1                         COMP (3)

Downloaded results are cached to speed up subsequent analysis. This information may become outdated. To refresh the cached results if they exist, set refresh=True, or provide an integer that will be interpreted as maximum allowed number of days since the last modification date. For example, if you want to refresh all cached results older than 100 days, set refresh=100. Use s.get_cache_file_mdate() to get the date of last modification, and s.get_cache_file_age() the number of days since the last modification.

There are sometimes missing information in the returned results although it exists in the Scopus database. For example, the EID may be missing, even though every element always has an EID. This is not a bug of pybliometrics. Instead it is somehow related to a problem in the download process from the Scopus database. To check for completeness of specific fields, use parameter integrity_fields, which accepts any iterable. Using parameter integrity_action you can choose between two actions on what to do if the integrity check fails: Set integrity_action=”warn” to issue a UserWarning, or set integrity_action=”raise” to raise an AttributeError.

>>> s = AuthorSearch("AUTHLAST(Selten)", integrity_fields=["eid"], integrity_action="warn")