One reviewer of my paper commented the following:

The authors should clearly state that the literature they have included in the introduction is indicative (both in the case of experimental measurements and molecular simulation of ILs) and redirect to some recent review articles.

I don't know what does he mean. I don't know If he expected that I add some introductory sentences before reviewing literature like (bold part):

Several experiments have recently been performed in order to understand the underlying dynamics of ILS, including XXX. ZZZ et al. [8] obtained the viscosities of the ILs XXX and YYY in a wide temperature range. Moreover, ZZZ and KKK [9] recently published atmospheric pressure self-diffusion coefficients of MMM tetrafluoroborates and NNN in the temperature range of 40-90 ℃.

However, in a previous paragraph I mentioned an introductory about ILs in General and not XXX in particular:

In the literature, experimental and theoretical methods have been employed to obtain the properties of ILs. Experimental analyses such as IR, H and F NMR spectra, polarizing optical microscopy, differential scanning calorimetry, and UV-vis spectra have been used to determine the properties of ILs [5-7].

  • 1
    That does seem an odd word choice. You'd expect it to say "is indicative of XYZ". Possibly they mean that the papers you're citing are just a small part of the existing literature, and you need to make that clear in the introduction. Aug 22, 2017 at 11:33

1 Answer 1


Your reviewer might be Italian! In Italian, you can say that something is just "indicative" (or indicativo) if it is only there to give you a rough idea. You can probably just state that your literature review is not exhaustive.

Some examples of a titolo indicativo

  • It is what I first thought. Italy here.
    – Alchimista
    Aug 22, 2017 at 13:50
  • It isn't only an Italian expression. I've heard that usage of "indicative" in the French-speaking world, also.
    – Tripartio
    Aug 23, 2017 at 5:02

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