Top nations in the sciences and social sciences by output

January 15, 2009

 Country Papers produced 1999-2008% world output 1999-2008% world output 1989-93
1 United States 2,999,344 31.838.2
2 Japan806,008 8.58.0
3 Germany775,787 8.27.7
4 England687,778 7.37.2
5 China586,664 6.21.5
6 France555,113 5.95.7
7 Canada420,636 4.55.0
8 Italy400,229 4.23.2
9 Spain296,892 3.11.8
10 Russia9,904 3.04.5
11 Australia1,311 2.92.3
12 India242,222 2.62.5
13 The Netherlands234,947 2.52.3
14 South Korea222,348 2.40.4
15 Sweden176,642 1.91.8
16 Switzerland170,842 1.81.5
17 Brazil161,716 1.70.7
18 Taiwan147,430 1.60.6
19 Poland134,068 1.41.0
20 Belgium1,307 1.31.0
The data above were extracted from the Essential Science Indicators database of Thomson Reuters. This data­base, currently covering January 1999 through October 2008, surveys only journal articles (original research reports and review articles) indexed by Thomson Reuters. Here our ranking in all fields of the sciences and social sciences is by papers produced. For articles with multiple authors from different nations, each nation receives full, not fractional, publication credit. Essential Science Indicators tabulated a total of 9,445,252 articles and reviews for the period indicated. The world per cent figure is calculated for each nation based on that total. The per cent shares of these top 20 nations adds up to 102.8 per cent, which reveals multinational co-authorship.

Essential Science Indicators surveys publication and citation data over a decade, with bimonthly updates. To contrast the world share figures for these nations for 1999 to 2008, Thomson Reuters’ consulted its National Science Indicators database, which covers the period 1981 to 2007, and checked the world share figures for these top 20 nations for 1989 to 1993. As the table shows, the US, Canada and Russia have lost world share comparing 1989-93 with 1999-2008, whereas China, South Korea, Brazil and Taiwan have increased their world shares of science and social science papers dramatically. For more information on Thomson Reuters’ Essential Science Indicators, see

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