Release 8.8

20 February 2023 by Aaron Ballagh in Release Notes

Release 8.8
Explore the impact of Scholarly Works through citations linkages, new Metrics chart type, API updates and more!

New Features and Improvements

Explore Scholarly Citations!

With this release, we are pleased to introduce functionality for navigating the scholarly citation network (graph) by viewing the citing and cited scholarly works for a given search or collection. This allows for exploration of the linkages between documents and entities by viewing and analysing the forward and backward citations to other scholarly works, as well as the citing patents.

This new functionality can be accessed from the Explore Citations tab (formerly called Citing Patents/Cited Works), and provides access to the following sets of citing/cited works and patents:

  • Citing Scholarly Works (forward citations): These are the Scholarly Works that cite (reference) the Scholarly Works in the original result set.
  • Cited Scholarly Works (backward citations): These are the Scholarly Works that are cited by (referenced by) the Scholarly Works in the original result set.
  • Citing Patents (forward patent citations): These are the Patents that cite (reference) the Scholarly Works in the original result set.

Please Note: Citing/Cited Scholarly Works counts can not be calculated for searches with more than 1 million results. Only citation results for the first 100,000 cited/citing scholarly works in your initial search are supported at this time. We recommend refining your initial search to less than 100,000 cited/citing scholarly works in order to view all citing/cited scholarly works for your initial search.

You can read more about exploring citations on the support post here: Explore Citations

Explore Patent Citations Coming soon!

Functionality for exploring the citing and cited patents will be added soon, enabling the exploration of linkages between patent documents and entities by viewing and analysing the forward and backward citations to other patents, as well as the non-patent literature citations to scholarly works.

New Metrics Chart

A new Metrics chart type has been added to the analysis charts to enable embedding of summary metrics for a search in a dashboard or report. The chart includes settings to select the desired metrics to be displayed on the chart.

The metrics chart can be accessed from the Custom chart types in the Analysis wizard.

Other Improvements and Changes

The Lens is a work in progress and with each release, The Lens team improves on certain features or perfects the quality of the data and the service to provide you with the most comprehensive data we can source. While often these changes stem from users' feedback, they also originate from improved data processing and improvements in the source data. In this release, here is the list of other improvements and changes that were implemented:

  • Refactored the scholarly search parser, moving it from the application server to the API server and bringing it inline with patent search.
  • Updated the subscribing and supporting Institutions, added Beilstein Institut and National Institute of Informatics.
  • Add institution logos for ~900 institutions, mostly from Japan and African countries.
  • Improved styles for iframe embeds.
  • Added account password advice to registration page.
  • Localised calculated Legal Status description.
  • Added a share option for dashboards built on a collection when in presentation mode.
  • Updated Scholarly Works layout on the results list when the details are expanded to accommodate narrower screens sizes.


  • Fix localisation in the filters and analysis dashboards and charts
  • Made toolbar button styles consistent
  • Fix PatCite sidebar display
  • Fix Refine Search functionality in the classification explorer
  • Fix Non-APC Journal (Diamond OA) filter
  • Fix chart data export for multi line charts
  • Fix Paddle payment webhook validation for non-standard characters

API & Data Improvements:

  • Added support for group_by family to the Patent API. Supports SIMPLE_FAMILY and EXTENDED_FAMILY.
  • Indexed the latest updated ROR schema, including new values for institution status (active, inactive, etc.)
  • Added the funding.organisation field to the default field for an "All Fields" scholarly works search
  • Updated the Classification Explorer to the latest CPC and IPCR schemas (version 2023.01)
  • Please note: The JSON export file formats will be deprecated in a future release. Please replace the legacy JSON exports with the JSON Lines exports, which uses the same data schema as the API response.

For guidance navigating the API, please check the API Documentation, and to report bugs/issues, usability related questions, or to request features, please use our GitHub issue tracker.

Interested in supporting the sustainability of The Lens?

  • Contact your librarians and let them know about Lens for Institutions and the Institutional Toolkits.
  • If you need to use for commercial uses, please comply with Lens Terms of Use by either subscribing to an Enterprise Toolkit, or if you are a sole practitioner or SME, an individual commercial use license. See account and pricing options.
  • Do you know someone who would be interested in The Lens? Share a search or collection with them, or suggest that they register for our newsletter here.

Interested in helping us improve?

  • Collective Action needs connected actors. The Collective Action Project provides a number of different activities for all stakeholders to participate in collective problem solving. See how you can participate.
  • Are you supportive of The Lens mission and interested in volunteering your expertise and time to support The Lens? We welcome expressions of interest. Please contact us at We are happy to learn more about your skill sets and see if there is a good fit of skills and timing to contribute to The Lens.
  • If you have published using Lens tools or data, or created an application using the API or data from the Lens, please share your work with us so we can share it with others on Lens Labs to help improve The Lens as a public resource.
  • Share your use case with us and explore how The Lens can help you and keep sending us your feedback on The Lens features and functionality.

The Lens is a public good project run by Cambia, a global social enterprise that is committed to making the innovation process more transparent, inclusive and effective for those seeking to solve problems and make a social impact and thus, we welcome your active engagement, participation, and support.

See our 8.8 Release Newsletter.