The purpose of this study is to evaluate publication output and citation impact in the social sciences in Malaysia, based on Social Science Citation Index (SSCI) data, for the period 1999–2008. In addition to the analysis of trends in publication and citation patterns and national publication profiles, an attempt is made to explore the strengths and weakness of different fields, using a new mathematical index, the scientific power index (PI). The findings indicate that publication output in the social sciences has been on the increase since 1999. Mostpapers have been published in median-impact-factor journals (mean impact factor of 2.72 per paper). Internationally co-authored publications represented 77 per cent of all citations. Most of the prolific authors are from the highly productive institutions; however, none of highly cited first authors are from highly productive institutions. Psychology, economics, management, and environmental studies are the dominant fields in Malaysian social sciences.