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09/05/2024 - Inspec reaches milestone 25 million records!

We are pleased to announce that the database now contains over 25 million records of research literature, facilitating the discovery of the latest research from hundreds of trusted global publishers!

For over 50 years IET Inspec has been an essential tool for institutions and universities around the world. Inspec is the go-to scientific and technical database for researchers, librarians, faculty and engineering professionals looking for trusted content and precision analytics across engineering, physics and computer science. 

We want to congratulate our colleagues who work with Inspec on this great accomplishment! To celebrate 25 million records, we are sharing 25 facts about Inspec:

History of Inspec

Beginning in 1898, Science Abstracts was the predecessor to Inspec. During the first year, a total of 1,423 abstracts were published at monthly intervals and at the end of the year an author and subject index were added.

In 1967 INSPEC was launched – an acronym meaning ‘Information Service in Physics, Electrotechnolgoy and Control’

The computerized Inspec production system was first developed in 1969, and INSPEC first went online in 1973 with only 20,000 records loaded for searching initially.

In 1993, INSPEC was the winner of the ‘Best Information Product Award’ from the European Online User Group. This was after a multi-year process to upgrade the database to the highest quality standards possible.

In 2019, Inspec Analytics was launched – a powerful research intelligence tool built off of the data in Inspec providing valuable insights into the research landscape.

Inspec Content

Today, Inspec evaluates and indexes over 1.5 million records each year – a vast amount of trusted research from journals, preprints, conferences, books and more.

Content selection for inclusion in Inspec is completely publisher neutral, Inspec currently indexes content from over 500 global publishers.

Inspec is one of the only databases to index newly launched journals, accepting new titles for inclusion based on the reputation of the publisher or sponsoring body.

Inspec actively ingests and indexes content from >4,500 research journals, and includes content from 12,000 inactive journals.

The historic content from the original Science Abstracts (1898-1968) has been digitized and is now called the ‘Inspec Archive.’

Inspec Indexing

Owing to the precision and accuracy of its indexing, Inspec has become the authoritative resource for accessing scientific literature across engineering, physics and computer science, serving numerous prestigious institutions and tens of thousands of users around the world.

Each record in Inspec goes through a rigorous indexing process which allows users to quickly search for and discover relevant research.

The Inspec indexing process involves human-curated indexing by subject matter experts.

Inspec includes specialized indexing such as astronomical indexing, chemical indexing, numerical indexing, treatment codes, and patent classification codes.

Inspec is currently available directly through the IET’s own platform, Inspec Direct, as well as a number of vendor platforms.

Inspec Thesaurus and Classification

The Inspec Classification is a subject categorisation scheme that contains over 3,600 Subject Classifications.

The Inspec Thesaurus contains over 10,000 Controlled Terms and is a terminology based subject index.

The Inspec subject classification is divided into 5 main sections: Physics, Electrical Engineering & Electronics, Computers & Control, Information and Technology for Business, and Mechanical and Production Engineering.

The Information and Technology for Business section was retired at the end of 2019. All relevant content from this subject continues to be indexed under other appropriate subject classifications.

The Inspec team conducts an annual thesaurus review to ensure the thesaurus and classifications keep up-to-date with the latest advances in scientific research. During this review, new terms are added and outdated terms are retired.

Inspec Analytics

In 2019, Inspec Analytics was awarded ‘Best New Product’ in The Charleston Advisor Awards.

Inspec Analytics uses semantic technology to connect each element of the literature indexed in Inspec, allowing users to explore trends and patterns across global research.

Inspec Analytics is included in Inspec subscriptions, with the option to purchase Inspec Analytics Plus (added datasets and functionality) for an additional fee.

Inspec Analytics includes more than 10 years of data, from 2013 onward.

Inspec Analytics currently has detailed insights for over 34,600 organisations; 3,600 subject classifications; and 10,000 controlled terms.