University of São Paulo: USP is among universities that publish the most studies on covid-19 in the world

THEUSP is one of the institutions that most produce scientific knowledge about the covid-19 pandemic in the world, according to a survey carried out by the company Clarivate Analytics , an international reference in scientometrics and scientific bibliography. According to the data, USP researchers published more than 2,900 papers on covid-19 from the beginning of 2020 to March 2021, which places the University as the 33rd largest producer of knowledge about the pandemic in this period in the world. Soon after comes the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), with more than 2,000 published works.

“Brazil plays a very important role in advancing our knowledge of covid-19,” said consultant Joshua Schnell, from Clarivate, when presenting the data at the company’s online event on May 27th. The numbers are based on journals indexed on the Web of Science platform , the most respected repository of scientific publications in the world.

The country as a whole has produced 3.2% of the world’s science on covid-19 so far; a value higher than Brazil’s overall contribution to all areas of science, which is 2.8%. The list includes several high-impact works, published in the best scientific journals in the world, such as Science , Nature and The Lancet .

A remarkable performance, considering the various difficulties imposed on national science by the pandemic itself and by the deep budget cuts it has undergone in recent years. “This shows the extraordinary and successful effort made by Brazilian science in the fight against covid-19, and the important role played by researchers at the University of São Paulo in this process”, says physicist Sylvio Canuto, dean of Research at the USP.

Considering all areas of research, Brazil remains the 13th largest producer of scientific knowledge in the world, with 732,000 works published in the last ten years (period 2011-2020), according to data from Clarivate. Just behind South Korea, which published 807,000, and ahead of Russia, which published 671,000. First in the ranking is the United States, with almost 7.5 million studies published in the same period, followed by China, with 4.3 million.

“This shows the extraordinary and successful effort made by Brazilian science in the fight against covid-19, and the important role played by researchers at the University of São Paulo in this process”

Sylvio Canuto, Dean of Research at USP
Countries with much smaller populations, but with much more tradition and investment in research, also appear ahead of Brazil, such as England, Germany, Japan, France and Italy. India stands out in seventh place, with 1.2 million works published.

The data show that the annual Brazilian scientific production increased continuously in the analyzed period, from approximately 55 thousand works published in 2011 to about 90 thousand publications in 2020. The same cannot be said, however, about the citation level of these publications , which had been growing until 2016, but has since fallen (a mild but noticeable drop), according to data from Clarivate. The overall impact index of Brazilian science (normalized by category), according to the data presented, is 0.8, on a scale where 1 is the global baseline.

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