, Volume 108, Issue 3, pp 1621–1636 | Cite as

Scientific output of the emerging Cuban biopharmaceutical industry: a scientometric approach

  • Ricardo Arencibia-Jorge
  • Elena Corera-Alvarez
  • Zaida Chinchilla-Rodríguez
  • Félix de Moya-Anegón


Cuba has developed a biopharmaceutical sector that involves some of the country’s most relevant scientific institutions. Despite the severe constraints on resources resulting from the U.S. embargo, the results achieved by this sector have contributed to put the country’s health indicators at the same level of high-income nations. Recently, the creation of BioCubaFarma as a cluster of high-technology enterprises organized around a closed cycle model becomes one of the most relevant efforts of the Island in order to make biopharmaceuticals one of the country’s leading export earners. The main aim of the current paper was to characterize BioCubaFarma through a battery of Scopus-based bibliometric indicators. A comparison with the most productive multinational pharmaceutical companies was made. Regression analysis of annual productivity, number of citations, scientific talent pool, innovative knowledge and other citation-based indicators was performed. Differences and similarities between BioCubaFarma and multinational companies in four Scopus subject categories related to this sector were identified. The most productive and visible institutions from BioCubaFarma were also characterized. Qualified human resources, innovative knowledge, leadership, high specialization in the field of vaccines development and non-dependence of international collaboration are strengths of the organization. However, it is still necessary to increase the number of articles published in highly visible journals with the aim to achieve a better citation-based performance. Moreover, to increase the contributions from less-productive institutions, more clinical research published in medical journals and more collaboration with universities and health institutions could also have positive benefits for BioCubaFarma’s pipelines and portfolios.


Biopharmaceuticals Pharmaceutical industry Scientometrics Bibliometric indicators Leadership Excellence International collaboration Multinational companies Cuba 



This research was supported by 2015 Postdoctoral Short Visiting Program of the Spanish Instituto de Bienes y Políticas Públicas (IPP) from Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC).


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Center for Scientific Research (CNIC)HavanaCuba
  2. 2.SciMago Research Group, Institute of Policies and Public GoodsCCHS-CSICMadridSpain

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