According to a report published by Japan’s science and technology ministry, China has surpassed the United States as the world leader in both scientific research output and “high impact” studies.
According to the report, which was released on Tuesday by Japan’s National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTP), China now publishes the most scientific research papers each year, followed by the United States and Germany, according to the Guardian.
The figures were derived from data compiled by the analytics firm Clarivate and were based on yearly averages between 2018 and 2020.
According to the Japanese NISTP report, Chinese research accounted for 27.2% of the world’s top 1% most frequently cited papers.
The number of citations received by a research paper is a widely used metric in academia.
According to the Guardian, the more times a study is cited in subsequent papers by other researchers, the greater its “citation impact.”
The United States accounted for 24.9 percent of the top 1% most highly cited research studies, with the United Kingdom coming in third at 5.5 percent.
According to the report, China published 407,181 scientific papers per year on average, surpassing the United States’ 293,434 journal articles and accounting for 23.4% of global research output.
According to the Guardian, China accounted for a high proportion of research in materials science, chemistry, engineering, and mathematics, while US researchers were more prolific in clinical medicine, basic life sciences, and physics.
The report was released on the same day that US President Joe Biden signed the Chips and Science Act, which authorises $200 billion in research funding over ten years to make US scientific research more competitive with China.