Thirty years of Brazilian research in Antarctica: ups, downs and perspectives
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The Antarctic continent is the most untouched region of the world but is also among the most vulnerable to global environmental change. Alterations to the Antarctic environment can have cascading effects many of which are unpredictable. Our objective was to investigate the contribution of Brazilian scientists to Antarctic research and to characterize the actions taken by the country to improve its scientific output and its international impact in this area. Scientific publications related to Antarctica, released from 1981 to 2011 were searched using three important science data bases. The data were used to determine the absolute increase and the relative growth rate of publications in order to characterize the contribution of Brazil to the world’s scientific understanding of Antarctica. The number of publications revealed an undersized contribution of the Brazilian science to the world’s publications about Antarctica. However, over the last 30 years there has been a substantial increase in the number of publications associated with governmental financial policies. As in other countries, Brazil’s most significant scientific contributions regarding the Antarctic continent are in the biological sciences. Therefore, public policies should maintain the current official support, while the research groups should pay attention to strategic scientific and technological areas still uncovered in the Antarctic research.
KeywordsAntarctic continent Bibliometric analysis Relative growth rate Financial support Public policies
The authors were supported by the Brazilian Antarctic Program through the CNPq (process 574018/2008), FAPERJ (process E-26/170.023/2008), Ministry of Environment—MMA, Ministry of Science and Technology—MCT and CIRM.
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