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Scientific publications by country: number of authors and number of articles

The 2020 State of US Science and Engineering report, published by the National Science Foundation (NSF, USA), shows the number of scientific articles1 per country from 2000 to 2018, presented in two forms.

  • Figure 1 shows the top 20 countries (in 2018) when the number of authors from each country is counted proportionally (fractional count2). According to this method, of the countries that publish the most articles in international journals, Brazil rose from 17th in the year 2000 to 11th in 2018, when the number of articles attributed to the country was 60,147.96.
  • Figure 2 shows the classification when the articles are fully counted for every country represented among the authors (full count3). Under this method, Brazil rose from 18th in the year 2000 to 14th in 2018, when researchers from the country were included among the authors of 73,073 papers.
  • Of the 20 leading countries in 2018, Brazil had the 6th highest annual growth (8.98%) in the fractional count, and the 5th largest (9.07%) in the full count.

Notes (1) SCOPUS/Elsevier database, peer-reviewed science and engineering articles published in journals and conference proceedings (  (2) Fractional count of each country represented among all the authors of the article. This method was used by the NSF in the body of its report because it eliminates repeat counts for articles with multiple authors from multiple countries. With this method, the sum of articles from each country is the total number of articles published each year.  (3) Full count of one article for each country represented among the authors. With this method, an article can be counted several times, once for each country represented among its authors.

Sources  Publications output: U.S. trends and international comparisons (Tab. nsb20206-tabs05a-002.xlsx). Science and Engineering Indicators 2020, National Science Foundation, USA.