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COUNTER Frequently Asked Questions

What does COUNTER mean?

COUNTER (Counting Online Usage of NeTworked Electronic Resources) is an initiative formed by libraries and publishers to provide consistent, credible and comparable usage reporting so as to help libraries understand how the information accessed from a variety of vendors/publishers is being used.

To learn more about COUNTER, go to

My Reports

How do I access reports for the IOP titles or packages that my institution has subscribed to?

To access the reports, you first need to login to the "MPS Insight" interface. Once logged in, you will see the "Choose Service" dropdown where you can select "IOPscience".

Electronic Journals appears in the "Choose Service" dropdown menu, what is this?

Electronic Journals was our journals subscription platform until March 2010. In March 2010 all of our journal subscribers were transferred from Electronic Journals to IOPscience. IOPscience replaces Electronic Journals as our journal subscription platform.

If your institution subscribed to titles via Electronic Journals then you can view your legacy statistics prior to March 2010 by choosing "Electronic Journals" in the "Choose Service" dropdown menu.

At any time you can switch to another service using the "Choose Service" dropdown on the top right of the page.

Similarly, you also get the option to choose a Service while logging out. So you can either logout completely or move to a different service.

My institution subscribes to the product "IOPscience extra", how do I see the reports for my institution?

To access the reports, you first need to login to the "MPS Insight" interface. Once logged in, you will see the "Choose Service" dropdown where you can select "IOPscience".

What COUNTER reports are available for IOP Publishing?

COUNTER reports include:

  • Journal Report 1: Successful Full-Text Article Requests
    COUNTER report showing the number of full-text article downloads by month and journal
  • Journal Report 3: Successful Item Requests
    COUNTER report showing the number of views of tables of contents, abstracts, references and full-text articles by month and journal
  • Journal Report 5: Number of Successful Full-Text Article Requests by Year-of-Publication and Journal
    COUNTER report showing the number of full-text article downloads by year-of-publication by journal back to 1874, including print and online ISSN.
  • Consortium Report 1: Number of successful full-text journal article or book chapter requests by month (XML only).
    COUNTER report broken down by consortium member, showing the full-text usage data for every online journal taken by individual consortium members, calculated on the same basis as in Journal Report 1.

The Journal Report 2: Turnaways by Month and Journal is not required. The COUNTER definition of a turnaway is a rejected session due to exceeding the simultaneous user limit allowed by a licence. As the IOP Publishing site does not operate a simultaneous user policy there are no turnaways.

Which journals are included in COUNTER reports?

All IOP journals are listed in the COUNTER reports, whether you subscribe or not. This is to allow you to see usage of Open Access titles, and other content that IOP makes freely available, such as This Month's Papers (free access to articles for the first 30 days after online publication) and other selected papers.

When should I expect monthly COUNTER reports to be updated?

The COUNTER standard requires that publishers deliver COUNTER Reports within one month. This means that the report containing usage data for January must be available to libraries by the end of February. MPS Insight aims to make reports available earlier than the one month maximum defined by COUNTER.

You can opt to receive an email alert notifying you when your updated COUNTER reports are available each month – see the Email Alerts section.

How do I access last year's reports or those of years before that?

MPS Insight hosts a number of years of historical reports for IOP Publishing so you are able to access your reports from one place. To choose an earlier year, select the required year from the Reporting Period dropdown on the Usage Reports Page.

For the Electronic Journals service, COUNTER reports are available from January 2006 until March 2010 when all Electronic Journals customers were migrated to IOPscience.

For IOPscience, reports are available from January 2009.

I can see all reports for 2009. Why are certain reports not available for 2008 or before?

Since MPS Technologies have started generating some reports only from 2009, such as the JR5 and XML Consortia report, you will not find these reports pre-2009 in MPS Insight.

Why am I seeing a list of more than one library when I access reports?

If you are an administrator for multiple libraries or a Syndicate, you will see a list of all Site and Syndicate accounts that you have permission to access.

For Syndicates you also see [+] beside the library names; you can click on this symbol to expand the list of libraries that you have access to and access reports for each library. You can also click on the Syndicate name to see consolidated statistics (generated using rules dictated by project COUNTER) for the entire Syndicate.

How can I download and save my reports?

Follow the steps below:

  1. Click on the Usage Reports Tab at the top of the page
  2. If you manage more than one library, browse or search for the desired library account. For tips on search, see help on Managing Multiple Libraries.
  3. On reaching the Usage Reports page of the account, select the year you want to download the report for from the Reporting Period dropdown on the right.
  4. Choose the format (CSV (Comma Separated Values) or XML) for the report and click on the respective icon (image).
  5. You will see a window asking you to open/save the file. Click "Save".
  6. Specify the location where you want to save the file and click "Save" (your screen may look different to the one above depending on your browser).

Do I need to have Microsoft Excel to view my reports?

A CSV file is a simple text file that can be opened and read in text editors like Notepad, EditPlus or SimpleText. But these files are most compatible with spreadsheet applications, like Microsoft Excel.

If you do not have a spreadsheet program, you can access the sites below to download them for free.

Alternatively, you can save the report on your computer, and upload it in Google Docs to view it –

My Account

How can I change my email address or password?

To change your access details, follow the steps below:

  1. Click on the Manage Account tab and then choose Update Your Account
  2. Make the required changes and click "Submit".

* Please Note:

If you do not see the Update Your Account option you should contact the IOP Publishing Customer Services team by clicking on the Help and Support tab and choose Contact Support.

Fill in the fields in the form; select "Password Problems" in the Message dropdown and click "Send". Your message will be sent to the IOP Publishing Customer Services team via email.

What is the "Security Question"?

If you happen to forget your password at any point of time, you will be asked to provide the answer to a question that you had chosen on your first login. If your answer is the same as the answer you gave when you registered, your password is reset and sent to your registered email address. This question ensures that nobody else can reset your password.

Since "Security Question" is used for your security, it is required that you provide this when you first login. To increase the security, we recommend you choose a question that will be difficult for others to guess.

I've a question/query – who can I ask?

You can contact the IOP Publishing Customer Services Team via email or by clicking on the Help and Support tab.

It's simple to use:

  1. Click on "Contact Support"
  2. Fill the form and send it.

Type of Query

Please choose the most appropriate item in the dropdown to help us answer your question promptly.

On clicking "Send", your mail will be automatically sent and you can expect a reply within two working days.

How can I create additional user accounts for library and faculty staff to also access our usage reports?

Please contact the IOP Publishing Customer Services team via "Contact Support" and we can set up additional accounts for you. Please select "Creating additional users" as the Type of Query.

What are the different types of user accounts, and what are the differences?

Two types of users who can access this application are:

  1. Admin Users
  2. Report Users

The only difference between these users is that an Admin User can view and manage SUSHI (Scholarly Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative) for their own library and for other libraries they have access to, whereas a Report User can neither view nor manage SUSHI.

* Please Note

You cannot be both an Admin User and a Report User at the same library. However, for example, you could be an Admin User of Library A and also be an Admin User or Report User of Library B.

What is SUSHI? How does it work to benefit librarians?

SUSHI, launched by the standards organization NISO, is a standard protocol that can be implemented within a library's electronic resource management (ERM) system to automate the usage statistics collection process.

Given the large number of publishers with which a typical library does business, the process of visiting each publisher's administrative Web site each month to gather usage statistics proves to be a time-consuming and tedious task for the librarians. With the help of SUSHI, this collection of statistics can be automated because SUSHI takes the form of a Web service, which stands as the preferred architecture for exchanging services and data among diverse computer systems.

To learn more about SUSHI, please visit the NISO website

What is the difference between manually downloading XML reports from MPS Insight and accessing them using SUSHI?

For a librarian, there are a number of advantages to using SUSHI as the method for collection of your reports:

  1. Cost per Click - SUSHI allows your usage data to be stored directly in a database enabling them to be combined with other data such as cost data, enabling cost-per-click calculations to be performed.
  2. Time Period - It allows you to define the time period for which you want to fetch statistics. For example, you can fetch reports for a Calendar Year or your Fiscal Year (e.g. July to June) or a customer date period, e.g. a semester.
  3. Manual login - By using SUSHI, you can fetch reports automatically from MPS Insight and download directly into your ERM system. You do NOT need to login manually to MPS Insight (although of course you can also manually login). SUSHI also informs you about the unavailability of any reports without actually requiring you to login to the website.

Overall, SUSHI allows you to set up your ERM system to make regular, scheduled transfers of COUNTER reports from all providers rather than having to allocate staff time for each manual download.

What is an Electronic Resource Management (ERM) partner?

An ERM system is a system that libraries can subscribe to, enabling management of electronic resource from a single system. ERM systems typically manage cost, renewal, license terms and other information. Recently ERM vendors have started to develop SUSHI modules. Libraries using an ERM system with a SUSHI module can set up the system to automatically import statistics from MPS without any manual intervention.

To enable SUSHI requests to be made to MPS Insight, the library needs to grant SUSHI access permission for the required service. This can be easily set up in the Manage SUSHI screen of MPS Insight.

What access details do I need to provide to my ERM partner? Where are these available from?

To enable ERM systems to use SUSHI to fetch reports, you need to do the following:

1.       Set up Permissions for Accounts

  • Click on Manage Account tab along the top of the page

  • Click on Manage SUSHI link or image

  • Choose the SUSHI partner you want to allow access to and click on the corresponding image under Manage SUSHI Permissions

  • You can choose to grant permission for all library accounts you have access to (if you have multiple library accounts) or just selected accounts using the options given at the top. If you have clicked on Select from Below List, you will be required to select the accounts you want to set up SUSHI for. To select these accounts, check the corresponding boxes under SUSHI Permissions.

  • After selecting SUSHI permissions, click on Update.

  • You will be taken back to the Manage SUSHI page where you will view a new image under Access details for your ERM system. The green flag shows that you have enabled SUSHI services for your accounts.

2.       Unique Customer ID

  • To ensure that your reports are only collected by your ERM system, you will need your unique Customer ID for each institution. Click on the Access details for your ERM System icon.

  • Copy or download the access details to be entered into your ERM system.

Why am I not getting the complete list of accounts I've permission to access on the "Select SUSHI Permissions" page?

To view and manage SUSHI of any library account, you need to be designated a Library Administrator for that account, rather than a Report User. Please contact if you feel you should have the ability to set up SUSHI for accounts that are not listed. So if you are an Admin User for Library A and a Report User for Library B, you can manage SUSHI only for Library A and not for B. Therefore, on the Manage SUSHI page, you will only view Library A.

What are email alerts?

Email alerts are a notification service that you can sign up to in order to receive an email when your COUNTER reports are updated each month.

When I clicked on a link, I was logged out. Why was I taken to the login page? Have my changes been saved?

You usually get logged out (timed out) of the application if you have been inactive for 30 minutes or longer. This means that you had either not clicked on a new link/tab or not refreshed your page for 30 minutes. This timeout is a security measure to protect your data. Please login again to continue accessing the site.

Note that your changes will have been submitted if you had clicked on Submit/Update or Send buttons before the timeout. But if you were taken to the Login page on clicking one of these buttons, you will be required to make the changes again.

When you have finished, we strongly recommend you click on the Logout button to ensure nobody else accesses your data.

Managing Multiple Libraries

How can I access more than one account?

In case you want to access usage stats reports for multiple libraries, send an email to IOP Publishing via the "Contact Support" section, mentioning the libraries you need access to, and they can then set up your account. Once the account is set up, you can login to the MPS Insight interface and access reports for multiple libraries. In the Usage Reports section you will see a list of libraries for which access is provided to you. You can simply click on a library link to see all reports available for that account.

In case you have access to a Syndicate-level account, you can access consolidated reports at the group level as well as reports of all library accounts under this Syndicate.

I manage multiple libraries – how can I search for individual libraries?

Click on the Usage Reports tab to search for libraries you have access to. For a quick search you can choose one of the three given options:

Browse Full List - To view the complete list of library accounts

Institution A-Z - To search for a library by its name

Search - To search for a library account using its name, Account ID or Account Type

Browse Full List - Use this tab to view the complete list of your libraries, including sites and Syndicates, arranged alphabetically. You can click on the [+] beside the parent accounts to view the child libraries on the same page. Once you have the complete list in front of you, you can click on the required name to view the reports.

For example, if you are a user of Account A with child Account N, you will have to click on [+] beside Account A to find Account N.

Institutions A-Z - You can use this option if you want to search for a Site (and NOT a Syndicate) by its name. A list of A to Z is displayed horizontally on this page. The letter your library name starts with is highlighted so that you can click on it to view a list of all sites under this letter.

For example, if you have access to Syndicate A, with child accounts N and M, alphabets N and M will be highlighted. You can click on the Library names to access their reports.


This is another way of locating a Site/Syndicate. Simply type two or more characters that are a part of the required library's Name or ID; to be more precise, select "Library Type" and press "Go".

You can click on the library names in the results to view their COUNTER reports.

How can I view the hierarchy of Sites and Syndicates? And how do I drill down to lower levels?

If you click on the Usage Reports tab, you can view a complete list of all your libraries, including Sites and Syndicates arranged alphabetically. Syndicate is accompanied by a [+] sign denoting child/member libraries. When [+] is clicked,all the library accounts under the parent account get listed and [+] turns into [-]. Once viewable, these child library accounts can be clicked open and their reports viewed.

To make the distinction between Sites and Syndicates clearer, legends are used with all library accounts. Look at the top right side of the page to confirm what these symbols stand for.

System Requirements

What system requirements are recommended for optimum performance of this site?

For best performance of MPS Insight, we recommend that you use the following:


  • Internet Explorer 6.0 and above
  • Safari 3.0 and above
  • Firefox 2.0 and above


We suggest that you use a spreadsheet application, like Microsoft Excel, to view your CSV reports.

Other Questions?

If your question is not answered here, please contact the IOP Publishing Customer Services team