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Research landscape of the BRICS countries: current trends in research output, thematic structures of publications, and the relative influence of partners

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  • Sergey Shashnov

    () (National Research University Higher School of Economics)

  • Maxim Kotsemir

    () (National Research University Higher School of Economics)

Abstract

This article provides the comprehensive analysis of research landscape in BRICS countries in different aspects: level of their publication activity and contribution to the global process of knowledge generation; thematic structure of publications of BRICS countries, their scientific specialization; quality of articles measured by citation indicators; similarity of thematic structures of publications; international research collaboration profiles; and finally closeness and relative influence of each country in intra-BRICS collaborating pairs. Special sections of the article are devoted to review of the literature, which discusses the main articles on various aspects of BRICS countries’ publication activity and their international research collaboration and to description the database and set of various bibliometric indicators, used in our analysis. We use Scopus database and the timespan of our research covers 2001–2015 years that allows us to identify key points in development of research landscapes of BRICS countries. The empirical part of the article is structured as follows. First, we provide the overview of publication activity and thematic structure of BRICS countries. Second, we measure the closeness of thematic structure of publications versus each other and versus general research agenda in the world using different indices of structural difference. Third part is the analysis of research collaboration with clear visualization of its thematic structure, identification of potential areas of collaboration and detection the influential countries in intra-BRICS collaborating pairs. We use wide range of bibliometric indicators: citation indicators; indices of structural difference; indicators of scientific collaboration. We apply different approaches to visualise data in form of different illustrative graphs including colored tables to do our research easy-to-read-and understand. The results of the study may be of interest to decision makers in determining the conscientious research story of the BRICS countries and priorities setting for multilateral scientific and technological cooperation, as well as for researchers dealing with relevant problems.

Suggested Citation

  • Sergey Shashnov & Maxim Kotsemir, 2018. "Research landscape of the BRICS countries: current trends in research output, thematic structures of publications, and the relative influence of partners," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 117(2), pages 1115-1155, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:117:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s11192-018-2883-7
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-018-2883-7
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    Cited by:

    1. Mohammad Javad Mansourzadeh & Behrooz Shahmoradi & Hossein Dehdarirad & Elmira Janavi, 2019. "A note on using revealed comparative advantages in scientometrics studies," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 121(1), pages 595-599, October.
    2. Radhamany Sooryamoorthy, 2019. "Scientific knowledge in South Africa: information trends, patterns and collaboration," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 119(3), pages 1365-1386, June.
    3. Maxim Kotsemir, 2019. "Unmanned aerial vehicles research in Scopus: an analysis and visualization of publication activity and research collaboration at the country level," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 53(4), pages 2143-2173, July.
    4. Houcemeddine Turki & Mohamed Ali Hadj Taieb & Mohamed Ben Aouicha & Ajith Abraham, 2020. "Nature or Science: what Google Trends says," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 124(2), pages 1367-1385, August.
    5. Houcemeddine Turki & Mohamed Ali Hadj Taieb & Mohamed Ben Aouicha & Ajith Abraham, 0. "Nature or Science: what Google Trends says," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 0, pages 1-19.
    6. Sandro Tarkhan-Mouravi, 2020. "Traditional indicators inflate some countries’ scientific impact over 10 times," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 123(1), pages 337-356, April.
    7. Hans Pohl, 2020. "Collaboration with countries with rapidly growing research: supporting proactive development of international research collaboration," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 122(1), pages 287-307, January.
    8. Luigi Aldieri & Gennaro Guida & Maxim Kotsemir & Concetto Paolo Vinci, 2019. "An investigation of impact of research collaboration on academic performance in Italy," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 53(4), pages 2003-2040, July.
    9. Sokolov, Alexander & Shashnov, Sergey & Kotsemir, Maxim & Grebenyuk, Anna, 2019. "Quantitative analysis for a better-focused international STI collaboration policy: A case of BRICS," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 147(C), pages 221-242.
    10. Xiaoyu Cai & Tao Han, 0. "Analysis of the division of labor in China’s high-quality life sciences research," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 0, pages 1-18.

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