Given a paper, I'm looking for a quick way to see the citation contexts of papers that cite that paper, to gauge both the direction and intensity of sentiment towards the original paper and help me decide what to read first. The need this would address of mine is somewhat related to this question but specifically I want the citation contexts.

Since a few tools allow you to get the 'cited by' list after searching for a paper, eg. Google Scholar and Semantic Scholar, and the former actually lets you search within the citing articles, a natural next step seems to me to see the citation contexts in the summary of the search results. Is there any feature to toggle this? Or another tool that does it (whilst still being a critical platform where lots of papers will exist/have been indexed on it).

Ideas appreciated. Thanks!

  • 3
    For items that are cataloged by Google Books this is possible, but there's a lot of material that isn't cataloged by Google Books. I'm not sure if there exists an engine that does this for academic papers. One reason this might not exists is that there is likely some licensing issues involved with pay-walled articles. Jul 13, 2018 at 13:53
  • 1
    In your own LaTeX document when citing a paper and with backref option, you'll see where the references are. But that's a very different use case than your desired one. Jul 13, 2018 at 17:41
  • Might be possible with Scopus, if you have access to it.
    – Gimelist
    Jul 14, 2018 at 6:25

1 Answer 1


From my experience, I think ResearchGate is the only platform currently offering exactly that. Wherever there is a paper fully available in its database being cited by another fully available paper, it shows an excerpt of the citation. Example below:

"... The number of cases where these approximations are used is vast. For instance, among many, 1[2][3][4][5][6][7][8] for the single- or few-mode approximation, or, e.g., [9][10][11][12][13] for the usage of 1+1D cavities. While simplifying the problem, some- times the rationale for these simplifications remains to be justified, above all in relativistic regimes. ..."

Reference: Interaction of a moving two-level atom with a single-mode quantized cavity field

Citing: [6] Relativity and quantum optics: accelerated atoms in optical cavities

The above was copied from the platform's citation display of a random reference.

I believe this is an interesting and powerful feature, however it would rely on everyone having a ResearchGate profile plus all references uploaded to the platform. And I do not see that happening any time soon.

Hope that helps? Good luck.

  • Some journal websites also offer this information.
    – Karlo
    Feb 13 at 23:21

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