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A scientometric assessment of the Southern Africa Development Community: science in the tip of Africa


  • Anastassios Pouris

    () (University of Pretoria)


This article reports the results of a scientometric assessment of the Southern Africa Development Community countries. The National Science Indicators database of Thomson-Reuters and the online ISI Web of Knowledge are utilized in order to identify the number of publications of the 15 countries over a period of 15 years; the activity and relative impact indicators of 22 scientific disciplines for each country and their collaborative patterns. It is identified that South Africa with 19% of the population in the region is responsible for 60% of the regional GDP and 79% of the regions publications. All countries tend to have the same focus in their disciplinary priorities and underemphasize disciplines such as engineering, materials science and molecular biology. It is expressed concern that the current research infrastructures are inadequate to assist in reaching the objectives developed in the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan of the Community.

Suggested Citation

  • Anastassios Pouris, 2010. "A scientometric assessment of the Southern Africa Development Community: science in the tip of Africa," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 85(1), pages 145-154, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:85:y:2010:i:1:d:10.1007_s11192-010-0260-2
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-010-0260-2

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Peter Ingwersen & Daisy Jacobs, 2004. "South African research in selected scientific areas: Status 1981–2000," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 59(3), pages 405-423, March.
    2. Anastassios Pouris, 2005. "An assessment of the impact and visibility of South African journals," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 62(2), pages 213-222, January.
    3. Torben Schubert & Radhamany Sooryamoorthy, 2010. "Can the centre–periphery model explain patterns of international scientific collaboration among threshold and industrialised countries? The case of South Africa and Germany," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 83(1), pages 181-203, April.
    4. Anastassios Pouris & Anthipi Pouris, 2009. "The state of science and technology in Africa (2000–2004): A scientometric assessment," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 79(2), pages 297-309, May.
    5. Nora Narváez-Berthelemot & Jane M. Russell & Rigas Arvanitis & Roland Waast & Jacques Gaillard, 2002. "Science in Africa: An overview of mainstream scientific output," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 54(2), pages 229-241, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Nelson Casimiro Zavale & Patrício Vitorino Langa, 2018. "University-industry linkages’ literature on Sub-Saharan Africa: systematic literature review and bibliometric account," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 116(1), pages 1-49, July.
    2. Hannes Toivanen & Branco Ponomariov, 2011. "African regional innovation systems: bibliometric analysis of research collaboration patterns 2005–2009," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 88(2), pages 471-493, August.
    3. 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.
    4. 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.
    5. Eustache Mêgnigbêto, 2013. "International collaboration in scientific publishing: the case of West Africa (2001–2010)," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 96(3), pages 761-783, September.
    6. Omwoyo Bosire Onyancha, 2020. "Towards a Knowledge Specialisation Index for Sub-Saharan Africa: an Informetrics Study," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 11(1), pages 373-389, March.
    7. Hugo Confraria & Manuel Mira Godinho, 2015. "The impact of African science: a bibliometric analysis," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 102(2), pages 1241-1268, February.
    8. Eustache Mêgnigbêto, 2013. "Scientific publishing in West Africa: comparing Benin with Ghana and Senegal," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 95(3), pages 1113-1139, June.
    9. Radhamany Sooryamoorthy, 2018. "The production of science in Africa: an analysis of publications in the science disciplines, 2000–2015," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 115(1), pages 317-349, April.


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