Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Mapping of Indian Science and Technology Output in a National and Global Context, 1997-2007

Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

Mapping of Indian Science and Technology Output in a National and Global Context, 1997-2007

Article excerpt


Science and technology pursuit has been a major planning objective of the country, identified on purpose to initiate, advance and accelerate national development in all sectors of economy. Consequent upon this policy initiative, India has been able to usher significant growth in its capacity and capability in basic, applied, and developmental research in science and technology. The investments in S&T have also grown many-fold, from Rs.760.5 crore in 1980 to about Rs.16,361 crore in 2005-06. The total annual expenditure on science and technology is now close to 0.8% of the Gross National Product (GNP). If the government's vision at present is to be believed, the size of the education sector will grow almost 10-fold during the current XI Five-Year Plan. Given these projections in the higher education sector in the country, S&T infrastructure in India is certain to witness significant expansion too in the near future.

Several bibliometric studies have so far attempted to look at indicators as required for understanding the status of science and technology in India (1-7). They had focused on developing indicators on institutional productivity, national productivity, scattering of research across Indian & foreign journals, quality of research, and nature of collaboration, etc. Another important study (8) by the authors to this paper, conducted recently under the sponsorship of the Office of the Principle Scientific Advisor (PSA) to the Government of India, had reported several important indicators to understand the progress in Indian science and technology, covering the period 1985-1986, 1995-2006 and 2001-2002. The present study in particular analyses the role and contribution of Indian science in global context. It also compares the similarity of Indian research profile with other top productive countries and particularly with China, South Korea and Brazil.


The main objective of this study is to produce current Indian S&T indicators by measuring progress of research in India using publications output data. In this regard the study aims at: (i) analyzing India's current publications rate and its global publications share in comparison with select leading countries, (ii) comparing and understanding similarities between India's national research profile and of select leading productive countries; (iii) determining most productive and weak subject areas of research in Indian science and technology; (iv) the share of Indian science in global output in overall as well as across various subjects; and (v) comparing Indian science with China, South Korea and Brazil S&T.

Methodology and Data Source

This study uses Scopus database for drawing publications data on India and select countries leading in science and technology. Scopus is an international multidisciplinary database indexing over 15,000 international peer reviewed journals in science and technology, besides more than 500 international conference/seminar proceedings. So far Scopus is the single largest international multidisciplinary database in the world. Given its wider coverage of journals and conference/seminar proceedings from developed and developing countries (including from India and China) compared to another international multidisciplinary database such as Web of Science database, the use of Scopus is expected to generate a better picture of Indian S&T indicators and hence its selection for this study.

The study uses 11 years publications data from 1997 to 2007 on India and other top 19 productive countries for developing S&T indicators. The study has purposely used larger data set covering 11 publication years in order to ensure that the study reflects a more accurate and reliable results as possible. In addition, it used citations data for measuring quality and visibility of Indian research output. Three years citations window has been used for computing average citations per paper for all S&T papers published by India from 1997 to 2004. …

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