Episode 17: Configuration of reference management software


What is reference management software?

Whenever you use sources such as books, journals, or websites in your research papers you must give credit to the original author by properly citing the sources. Citations also help your reader find the sources again.

When working on extensive research projects, you will need to collect, organize and format all your citations. So-called Reference management software allows you to search for and store your references, as well as create in-text citations and bibliographies.

Reference management software (also called: citation management software or personal bibliographic management software) is software for scholars and authors to use for recording and utilising bibliographic references (citations). Once a citation has been recorded, it can be used time and again in generating bibliographies, such as lists of references in scholarly books, articles and essays.

Let’s get an overview about popular Citation Tools. You will see which one suits best for your demands:

Examples of tools

1. Zotero

Zotero is a free, open-source and easy-to-use tool to help you collect, organize, cite, and share your research sources. It is an add-on for the Firefox browser. You can also search for other researchers in your field.
What makes Zotero very comfortable to use: it automatically senses content when you’re browsing the internet or a scientific database, allowing you to add it (one or several references) to your personal library with a single click. Since it is a browser add-on you will have the advantage that you don’t have to change between your browser and your desktop tool to manage your records.

Download and more information: http://www.zotero.org/
Help and Tutorials in several languages: http://www.zotero.org/support/
Quick Start Guide: https://www.zotero.org/support/quick_start_guide

Hint: Zotero will automatically recognize “proxied resources” and save the settings. That means it will recognize as soon as you enter one of the locked databases via findit.lu and will easily handle their results / bibliographic records.
In Zotero go to Preferences > Advanced to type in the Url for the findit.lu OpenUrl Resolver see “Further information” below for more information on OpenUrl Resolver.



2. Citavi

Citavi is widespread in Germany and its core features are reference management, knowledge organization, and task planning. Like in Zotero so-called “Picker Extensions” for your browser are available. The extension will automatically recognize references while browsing the internet or databases, so you will be able to import them with one click. You can also select sentences or paragraphs manually within an article and save it as a quotation, abstract or keywords to your saved bibliographic record.
There is a free version available (limited to 100 references per project).

Download free version: http://www.citavi.com/en/download.html
Detailed Manual: http://manual.citavi.com/en/
Videos and Slideshows: http://www.citavi.com/en/support.html#2

Hint: Go to Tools > Options > Search for editing your preferences to search findit.lu (=Bibliothèque nationale de Luxembourg) via Citavi. While typing “luxembourg”, the system will suggest the National Library as result. Just check it and click “Add” to save your preferences.

You can edit the OpenUrl / “BaseURL” (see “Further Information” below)  within the following tab “OpenURL”.


3. EndNote

EndNote is citation management software produced by Thomson Reuters. In comparison to the other mentioned tools mentioned here, EndNote requires a fee. A free 30-day-trial is available.
With EndNote Web you can collect and organize references as well as format citations and footnotes or a bibliography. Additionally, you can share references with others who have EndNote Web. With the latest version you have the possibility to sync your content, so you can access your research from anywhere and manage your EndNote library from multiple computers.
EndNote doesn’t support searching findit.lu via its interface. In return more than 400 library catalogues and databases (like PubMed or Web of Science) can be easily searched

Download 30-day trial version: http://endnote.com/downloads/30-day-trial
Video Tutorials: http://endnote.com/if/endnote-video-training
Detailed Manuals: http://endnote.com/if/online-user-manual


4. Mendeley

Mendeley is a free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research library, collaborate with others online, and discover other relevant papers based on what you are reading.

In comparison to the other citation tools Mendeley’s main focus is on the collaborative aspect of researching. It’s like a social network for researchers: you can edit your personal profile, exchange information with other researchers and see hot articles based on readership statistics about papers, authors and publications.
Mendeley is both an online application and a desktop application, between which articles can be synchronised and to some extend shared with others in a scientific social network.

In Mendeley online, there is the usual option to configure the findit.lu OpenURL resolver (more information):
1. Select “Account details” from the “My Account” dropdown.

2. The automatic IP recognition using “Choose library from a list” doesn’t work with Mendeley, so choose “Add library manually” and add details:

More features and download of Mendeley Desktop: http://www.mendeley.com/features/
Help & Video Tutorials: http://www.mendeley.com/videos-tutorials/


Further information – OpenURL

If possible, you should edit the preferences of your Citation Tool and connect it with findit.lu. So you will have the possibility to article availability on findit.lu via your Citation Tool and import the results.
If you can edit the OpenUrl Resolver (also called “Base URL”) please use the following:

Open Url Resolver for Findit.lu

You can search popular or specific library catalogues via Reference Tools like Citavi or EndNote. Only one of our examples (EndNote) will be able to search scientific databases like PubMed or Ebsco from its user interface.

In most cases you will be able to install a “picker” for your browser which adds the bibliographic record, citation or image from scientific databases with one click to your citation project. All of the mentioned tools are able to import references and/or pdf-files.


Congratulations, you have now covered all Episodes!

List of all Episodes: http://blog.findit.lu/help


Download this episode