Publication Output, by Region, Country, or Economy

Publication output reached 2.6 million in 2018 (Table 5a-1). The high-income economies (the United States, Germany, Japan, and other similar countries) produced 56% of S&E articles in 2018, upper-middle-income economies (China, Russia, Brazil, and other similar countries) produced 34%, and lower-middle-income economies (India, Indonesia, Pakistan, and other similar countries) produced 9% (Figure 5a-1 and Table S5a-2).

S&E articles in all fields, for 15 largest producing regions, countries, or economies: 2008 and 2018

(Number)

EU = European Union.

Note(s)

The countries or economies are ranked based on the 2018 total. Article counts refer to publications from peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings in S&E and indexed in Scopus (see Technical Appendix for more details). Articles are classified by their year of publication and are assigned to a region, country, or economy on the basis of the institutional address(es) of the author(s) listed in the article. Articles are credited on a fractional-count basis (i.e., for articles from multiple countries or economies, each country or economy receives fractional credit on the basis of the proportion of its participating authors). Detail may not add to total because of countries or economies that are not shown. Proportions are based on the world total excluding unclassified addresses (data not presented). Data were extracted in June 2019. Average annual change, or compound annual growth rate, is average growth rate = (year 2 publications/year 1 publications)(1/number of years) -1. See Table S5a-1 for groupings of regions, countries, or economies. Detail and other countries are available in Table S5a-2.

Source(s)

National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation; Science-Metrix; Elsevier, Scopus abstract and citation database, accessed June 2019.

Science and Engineering Indicators

Global share of S&E articles by income group: 2000–18

Note(s)

Article counts refer to publications from a selection of peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings in S&E fields from Scopus. Articles are classified by their year of publication and are assigned to a region, country, or economy on the basis of the institutional address(es) of the author(s) listed in the article. Articles are credited on a fractional-count basis (i.e., for articles produced by authors from different countries, each country receives fractional credit on the basis of the proportion of its participating authors). Data are not directly comparable to Science and Engineering Indicators 2018; see the Technical Appendix for information on data filters. Low-income economies are not included in this figure because of their low publication output. For more information on the 2019 World Bank Country and Lending Groups classification of income groups, see https://datahelpdesk.worldbank.org/knowledgebase/articles/906519-world-bank-country-and-lending-groups, accessed January 2019. Data by country and income groups are available in Table S5a-2.

Source(s)

National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation; Science-Metrix; Elsevier, Scopus abstract and citation database, accessed June 2019.

Science and Engineering Indicators

The last decade has seen a difference in the publication growth rates of middle- and high-income economies. The number of articles from upper-middle- and lower-middle-income economies combined grew 9% per year while the output of high-income countries grew 1% per year from 2008 to 2018 (Table S5a-2). The world’s average annual growth rate from 2008 to 2018 slowed to 4% compared to 6% for the 2000 to 2008 period (Table 5a-1 and Table S5a-2).

The contribution to the world’s increasing publication output varies across countries and economies. Viewing each country’s or economy’s publication output as a share of the total global output shows that the historically large producers—United States, EU countries (combined), and Japan—have declining shares of the world’s increasing output since 2000 (Figure 5a-2 and Figure 5a-3). Meanwhile China and India have increased their share of the growing world output. China produced 5% of global output in 2000 and grew to 21% in 2018; India’s share rose from 2% to 5% during this period (Figure 5a-3). Among the 15 largest publication producers, countries with higher than average growth rates include South Korea (4%), Brazil (5%), China (8%), Russia (10%), India (11%), and Iran (11%) (Table 5a-1).

S&E articles in all fields, for selected regions, countries, and economies and rest of world: 1996–2018

EU = European Union.

Note(s)

Article counts refer to publications from a selection of peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings in S&E fields from Scopus. Articles are classified by their year of publication and are assigned to a region, country, or economy on the basis of the institutional address(es) of the author(s) listed in the article. Articles are credited on a fractional-count basis (i.e., for articles produced by authors from different countries, each country receives fractional credit on the basis of the proportion of its participating authors). Data are not directly comparable to Science and Engineering Indicators 2018; see Technical Appendix for information on data filters. For more information on the 2019 World Bank Country and Lending Groups classification of income groups, see https://datahelpdesk.worldbank.org/knowledgebase/articles/906519-world-bank-country-and-lending-groups, accessed January 2019. Data by country are available in Table S5a-2.

Source(s)

National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation; Science-Metrix; Elsevier, Scopus abstract and citation database, accessed June 2019.

Science and Engineering Indicators

S&E articles, by global share of selected region, country, or economy: 1996–2018

EU = European Union.

Note(s)

Articles are classified by their year of publication and are assigned to a region, country, or economy on the basis of the institutional address(es) of the author(s) listed in the article. Articles are credited on a fractional-count basis (i.e., for articles produced by authors from different countries, each country receives fractional credit on the basis of the proportion of its participating authors). Data are not directly comparable to Science and Engineering Indicators 2018; see Technical Appendix for information on data filters. For more information on the 2019 World Bank Country and Lending Groups classification of income groups, see https://datahelpdesk.worldbank.org/knowledgebase/articles/906519-world-bank-country-and-lending-groups, accessed January 2019. Data by country are available in Table S5a-2.

Source(s)

National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, National Science Foundation; Science-Metrix; Elsevier, Scopus abstract and citation database, accessed June 2019.

Science and Engineering Indicators

The U.S. annual publication growth rate of 1% fell below the world's average annual growth (4%) (Table 5a-1). EU countries that ranked among the world’s largest 15 producers had annual growth rates below the world average from 2008 to 2018: Italy (2%), Spain (2%), Germany (1%), the UK (1%), and France (0.0%) (Table 5a-1). The three largest contributors to the growth in the world’s publication output—from 1.8 million in 2008 to 2.6 million in 2018—were China (35%), the EU (12%), and India (11%) (Table 5a-1). The United States contributed 4% to the world’s publication research growth from 2008 to 2018.

In terms of the absolute number of publications, researchers in China and the United States produced the most S&E publications, producing 528,263 (21%) and 422,808 (17%) articles, respectively, of the 2.6 million world 2018 total (Table 5a-1). The next closest countries by research publication count were India (135,788), Germany (104,396), Japan (98,793), and the UK (97,681) (Table 5a-1). Nine other countries complete the list of the largest 15 countries by output: Russia, Italy, South Korea, France, Brazil, Canada, Spain, Australia, and Iran. Together, these 15 countries produced just over 75% of the world’s publication output in 2018 (Table 5a-1). The top 15 producers of S&E articles have been stable over the last 10 years with the exception of Iran replacing Taiwan (Table 5a-1 and Table S5a-2).