PRESS RELEASE FROM NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
22 MARCH 2012
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SINGAPORE SCIENTISTS MOST PRODUCTIVE IN ASIA-PACIFIC
Singapore’s scientists are the most productive of the top-ranked Asia-Pacific countries, according to the Nature Publishing Index 2011 Asia-Pacific, released today. Singaporean scientists are top in terms of articles per capita and articles per research scientist, outperforming researchers in higher ranked countries Japan, China, Australia and Korea. The city-state’s high levels of investment in science and technology have resulted in Singapore ranking fifth in the region.
The top three institutions in Singapore: the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR); the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU); are all ranked in the top 50 in the Asia-Pacific for the 2009-2011 period — at 15th, 18th and 35th, respectively.
Another facet of Singapore’s success is the increase in the number of institutions contributing each year. Ten institutions published in Nature research journals in 2011, up from only three in 2009. This number is expected to continue to grow as the Singapore Government is already committed to expanding dramatically the amount of money spent on R&D in 2011–2015.
Singapore’s vibrant knowledge-based economy is characterized by high levels of collaboration between government agencies and private research institutes, including international companies such as GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis and Merck, and also between disciplines. This multidisciplinary collaboration has been actively encouraged in Singapore’s R&D strategy.
In a dynamic Asia-Pacific, Singapore faces a challenge from the larger Taiwan and India, both with a growing presence in research and development in the region.
The supplement provides a snapshot of research in the Asia-Pacific in 2011. To see the latest results for the region, 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.
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