Preliminary analysis of Google Scholar indexing has established that almost 5,500 academic publications include substantial use of European Social Survey (ESS) data (2003-20).

Bibliographic monitoring of English-language publications only – undertaken annually by researchers at the University of Ljubljana – found that 516 of these articles were published in 2020 alone.

Substantive use of ESS data was found in 4,747 (87.4%) academic research articles, with the remaining 682 (12.6%) focusing on survey methodology.

The research was published in peer-reviewed journal articles (52.9%), conference papers (13.9%), book chapters (13.4%), working papers (11.5%), theses (4.3%), reports/projects (2.6%) and books/monographs (1.4%).

Up to two research topics are manually coded for each publication and include politics (22.4%), immigration (13.7%), survey methods (13.4%), welfare (10.6%), the labor market (9.5%), economy (9.2%), wellbeing (7.9%), social inequalities (7.6%) and trust (7.5%).

Other research topics include, values, health, family, age groups, gender, crime, religion, education, citizenship, media, national identity, environment, Europe and post-socialism.

Of the 2,875 journal articles, 34.2% were published in sociology journals, 23.3% in those covering political science, 13.8% in economic titles, 6.7% in health and medicine and 5.8% in survey methods journals.

Other journal domains include psychology, criminology, media, demography, environment.

The preliminary report also includes a breakdown of the national affiliation of authors – led by the United Kingdom, Germany, the United States and the Netherlands.

Published alongside the report is an appendix: ESS International Bibliography 2003-20 – a document that includes citations of all 5,429 publications, including DOI references.

The analysis was led by Brina Malnar of the Public Opinion Research Centre at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Ljubljana.

A full report – ESS annual bibliographic report 2021 – will be completed by December 2021 and published on the Impact section of the ESS website.