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Publication activity in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE) database in the context of Chinese science and technology policy from 1977 to 2012

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  • Fu, Junying
  • Frietsch, Rainer
  • Tagscherer, Ulrike

Abstract

It is well known that the number of China's publications has increased at a remarkable rate over the last three decades. However, many related issues still remain unknown, like the scientific impact of those papers, the journals in which Chinese scientists publish their papers, and the relationship between the trend of China's publication activity and its S&T policy as well as other related governance issues. By using bibliometric methods, this paper finds that China's citation number which ranks fourth worldwide does not run parallel to the publication number that ranks second in the SCIE data-base, implying its publications haven't had the impact that was expected. Its citation rate ranks 78th though it has increased steadily. China's publications are mostly published in the lower impact journals but they attract more citations than the journals' expected values. China's S&T related inputs, including funding and personnel, have ex-hibited remarkable increasing trends during the four stages of S&T policies since 1977. Besides S&T investments, utilitarian practice nationwide may partly be responsible for the tremendous increase of SCI papers, especially when the performance-based evaluation system is mostly employed. It is essential to create a flexible environment and promote a scientific spirit combined with developing broader and more plural forms of the S&T assessment system, which would make developing an innovation country more realistic for China.

Suggested Citation

  • Fu, Junying & Frietsch, Rainer & Tagscherer, Ulrike, 2013. "Publication activity in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE) database in the context of Chinese science and technology policy from 1977 to 2012," Discussion Papers "Innovation Systems and Policy Analysis" 35, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:fisidp:35
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David Roessner, 2000. "Quantitative and qualitative methods and measures in the evaluation of research," Research Evaluation, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(2), pages 125-132, August.
    2. Zhou, Ping & Leydesdorff, Loet, 2006. "The emergence of China as a leading nation in science," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 83-104, February.
    3. R. D. Shelton & Loet Leydesdorff, 2012. "Publish or patent: Bibliometric evidence for empirical trade-offs in national funding strategies," Journal of the Association for Information Science & Technology, Association for Information Science & Technology, vol. 63(3), pages 498-511, March.
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