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India in global top 10 in research article output

B. Aravind Kumar
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Dr. Michiel Kolman — Photo: K.V. Srinivasan
Dr. Michiel Kolman — Photo: K.V. Srinivasan

The “Research Strengths of India,” revealed by Elsevier's bibliometric tool SciVal Spotlight, could come in handy for policy-makers as well as institutional heads.

This was stated by Michiel Kolman, senior vice-president, Global Academic Relations at Elsevier, while presenting the data of the ‘SciVal country map' of India at the Indian Science Congress at Kattankulathur, near here, on Wednesday.

(Elsevier is a company which publishes medical and scientific literature. It is a part of the Reed Elsevier group.)

Dr. Kolman said India was strong, based on leadership articles, in chemistry (35 per cent), engineering (18 per cent), mathematics and physics (11 per cent) and biology (10 per cent).

India was in the global top 10 in article output and it was growing at an impressive 8 per cent. It, however, lagged behind China and Brazil.

India was ranked in the top 20 in quality of articles. The most productive institutions in the country were the IITs, the IISc, and the CSIR institutions. The only university among the top 10 was the University of Delhi, Dr. Kolman noted.

Scopus, which served as the underlying bibliometric database for SciVal Spotlight, had sourced over 18,000 journals from over 5,000 publishers, scanning 42 million records (70 per cent abstract) and over three million conference papers. From working with researchers and librarians, Elsevier was moving towards the top of the pyramid. SciVal Spotlight was developed to target institutional heads such as deans, provosts, directors and heads of departments and government funding agencies, Dr. Kolman said. “SciVal Spotlight, will help evaluate research and establish strengths greatly assisting in policy formulation.”

It would be very useful for institutions to gather exceptional research teams and retain them. Top scientists in every discipline (based on quality articles) could be identified using the zoom in tool and narrowing subject-wise specialists. It would also help in identifying the strong areas of each university and explore the scope for collaboration between institutes.

Results revealed that research was very strong in physics, chemistry, engineering, earth science, biology, biotechnology and infectious diseases in India. Some areas in which the nation was not too strong were computer science, social science, health sciences, medicine, and brain research. Almost all institutes had shown a steady growth in publication of research articles, but there was some catching up to do with the best in the world in terms of quality, Dr. Kolman said. 

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