Inspec Customer Research

In 2013, IET concluded a worldwide survey in which we received feedback on Inspec from engineering and physics librarians in academic, corporate and government organizations.


The survey showed, amongst librarians, INSPEC’s quality is undisputed; they agreed Inspec included:

  • Top-notch indexing and thesaurus– delivers accuracy and relevance.
  • Breadth of coverage (range of sources, types)
  • Excellent coverage of conference proceedings
  • Difficult-to-find or rare items
  • Broad international coverage
  • Depth of back file
  • Excellent subject classification
  • ISSN and DOI numbers – more accurate and relevant


Direct feedback from librarians across the globe included quotes such as:

"I highly rate it because it's always had a good reputation for indexing and searching. Because of that it's very accurate - you're not given huge results." Academic librarian, UK.

"It's a really robust online tool. It's so powerful for librarians and education managers. They really use it and recommend it for so many things." Government user, UK.

"I direct students to INSPEC because of the broad coverage (...) You get the IEEE publications, your Elseviers, your Springers, your Wiley's...a good diagnostic of publisher and professional societies. The control vocabulary descriptors are really powerful at sorting the wheat from the chaff. It's the human sorting and categorisation that really gives us value. I think it is key and if we had just to rely on Google, that would be bad." Academic librarian, Australia.

"It's an invaluable resource." Academic librarian, US.

"INSPEC is a household name so we trust that." Academic librarian, US.

"Its swathe and scope is admirable and its coverage of all types of literature is very helpful." Academic librarian, US.

"(I llike) its broader international coverage than IEEE (...) It has things that we may miss otherwise." Academic librarian, Canada.

"I'm able to tell students, 'An expert has read this and has decided that it's about the subject so it makes it easy to find content." Academic librarian, US.

"INSPEC has always had a surprisingly high coverage. I've found things that I couldn't believe were in INSPEC." Corporate user, Switzerland.