PRESS RELEASE FROM NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
22 MARCH 2012
Japan retained its number one position in Asia-Pacific science, well ahead of fast-growing China and steady Australia, according to the Nature Publishing Index 2011 Asia-Pacific, released today. China consolidated second place, with Australia third, Korea fourth, and Singapore fifth.
Japan published well over one third of the articles contributed by Asia-Pacific countries to Nature research journals in 2011. Japan’s research institutions outperformed all others in the Asia-Pacific region. Seven institutions in Japan ranked in the top ten for Asia-Pacific, and four in the top five. All seven institutions in the regional top ten appear in the Nature Publishing Index 2011 Global 100 (beta) rankings, also released today.. Last year, the University of Tokyo became the first organization in the Asia-Pacific to contribute more than 100 articles to the Nature family of journals.
David Swinbanks, Regional Managing Director of Nature Publishing Group, reports, “Japan’s output has grown dramatically year on year between 2010 and 2011, faster than in previous years, and continues to grow in 2012.”
Japan has demonstrated its resilience by increasing its publication rate of scientific papers in Nature journals despite more than US$1 billion in damage to universities and national labs, following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
The Nature Publishing Index 2011 Asia-Pacific measures the output of research articles from nations and institutions in terms of publications in 2011 in the prestigious Nature research journals. The Index, which provides a unique insight into the quality and impact of Japanese and Asia-Pacific science, is published as a supplement to Nature today.
The supplement provides a snapshot of research in the Asia-Pacific in 2011. To see the latest results for the region, and the Nature Publishing Index Global Top 100, visit the Index website at www.natureasia.com/en/publishing-index/. The data posted on the website is updated every week with a moving window of 12 months of data.
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Notes on the Nature Publishing Index:
The Index results should be used with some caveats. The Index only covers Nature and the 17 Nature research journals, so while it offers broad coverage of basic research in the life sciences, physical and chemical sciences, coverage of applied sciences, engineering and clinical medicine is relatively limited, and so the index should be used primarily as an indicator of strength in high quality basic research. It does not incorporate publication in other high quality journals. The Index also only considers one factor — publication output in one family of journals. It does not weight multiple factors in the way that other rankings do, such as the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities or the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.
The output of an institution or country obviously depends on its size. Finally, some institutions have very large numbers of researchers that help drive up their rankings. So it is important to take into account the numbers of researchers in an institution or country when interpreting the results.
The Nature Publishing Index Global 100 (beta) (www.natureasia.com/en/publishing-index/global/) ranks the top 100 institutions in the world according to the numbers of papers published in Nature research journals in 2011, and is derived from a beta website covering over 2500 institutions worldwide that published in Nature research journals in 2011. The Nature Publishing Index Global Top 50 (beta) is produced in collaboration with Digital Science, a division of Macmillan Publisher Ltd.
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