Loet Leydesdorff, Caroline S. Wagner, and Lutz Bornmann
The percentages of shares of world publications of the European Union and its member states, China, and the United States have been represented differently as a result of using different databases. An analytical variant of the Web-of-Science (of Thomson Reuters) enables us to study the dynamics in the world publication system in terms of the field-normalized top-1% and top-10% most-frequently-cited publications. Comparing the EU28, USA, and China at the global level shows a top-level dynamics that is different from the analysis in terms of shares of publications: the United States remains far more productive in the top-1% of all papers; China drops out of the competition for elite status; and the EU28 increased its share among the top-cited papers from 2000-2010. Some of the EU28 member states overtook the U.S. during this decade; but a clear divide remains between EU15 (Western Europe) and the Accession Countries. Network analysis shows that internationally co-authored top-1% publications perform far above expectation and also above top-10% ones. In 2005, China was embedded in this top-layer of internationally co-authored publications. These publications often involve more than a single European nation.
** preprint version at http://arxiv.org/abs/1404.0462
** apologies for cross-postings
Professor Emeritus, University of Amsterdam
Visiting Professor, Birkbeck, University of London;