Search concepts

These are the original OpenAlex Concepts, which are being deprecated in favor of Topics. We will continue to provide these Concepts for Works, but we will not be actively maintaining, updating, or providing support for these concepts. Unless you have a good reason to be relying on them, we encourage you to look into Topics instead.

The best way to search for concepts is to use the search query parameter, which searches the display_name and description fields. Example:

You can read more about search here. It will show you how relevance score is calculated, how words are stemmed to improve search results, and how to do complex boolean searches.

Search a specific field

You can also use search as a filter, allowing you to fine-tune the fields you're searching over. To do this, you append .search to the end of the property you are filtering for:

The following field can be searched as a filter within concepts:

You can also use the filter default.search, which works the same as using the search parameter.

Autocomplete concepts

You can autocomplete concepts to create a very fast type-ahead style search function:

This returns a list of concepts with the description set as the hint:

{ 
  "results": [
    {
        "id": "https://openalex.org/C41008148",
        "display_name": "Computer science",
        "hint": "theoretical study of the formal foundation enabling the automated processing or computation of information, for example on a computer or over a data transmission network",
        "cited_by_count": 392939277,
        "works_count": 76722605,
        "entity_type": "concept",
        "external_id": "https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Q21198"
    },
    ...
  ]
}

Read more in the autocomplete page in the API guide.

Last updated