Using EndNote for Collaboration: the Traveling Library

A Traveling Library refers to the formatted citations in your Word document and is created for each Word document when formatted using EndNote and Cite-While-You-Write (CWYW):  it’s a subset of your EndNote library which contains only the citations that appear in your paper. Each time you format a citation (e.g. insert a reference) EndNote will look in your open library to find the corresponding reference. If the library is not available or not open, EndNote uses the “traveling library” for reference information. This allows you to collaborate with other authors on a paper without each author having the same EndNote library because reference data is kept with each formatted citation. The reference data saved with each citation includes all fields except Notes, Abstract, and Figure.

When someone e-mails you a MS Word document that has been created with EndNote citations you can export the “traveling library” from Word into a new or existing EndNote library on your own computer by following these steps:

  • Have the Word document open and go to the EndNote tab (in Word 2007 +).
  • In the most right column, click on “Export to EndNote.”




  • Choose “Export Traveling Library”. Follow the directions. You’ll be guided to add those references into either an existing EndNote library (by selecting a library from the drop-down list or using Browse to locate the library) or a new EndNote library.








Please note that this will only work if the Word document citations were created using EndNote, and the EndNote coding still remains in the document (i.e. it wasn’t converted to a plain text document before you received it).

About David

David is the Education & Information Consultant, Basic Sciences
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