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The Publication Success of 102 Nations in Scopus and the Performance of Their Scopus-Indexed Journals


Over the years, the number of journals indexed in Scopus has increased, although it varies significantly between countries. The increasing proportion of international journals of a country provides new venues for papers from that country to be seen by other researchers worldwide. In this work, we evaluate the relationship of a country’s scientific performance or publication success with both its journals’ quantity and quality. The specific objective of the study is to identify the relationship between the country’s publication success and the quantity and quality of those country’s journals indexed in Scopus during 2005–2014. The publication success of 102 individual countries, measured by their scientific productivity, impact and collaboration indicators, the quantity of country’s Scopus-indexed journals in 2014 (a total of 22,581 journals) as well as the quantity of its journals were investigated. Scopus-indexed journals are predominantly from Western Europe (48.9%) and North America (27.7%), with the United States and the United Kingdom dominate with a total 51%. The contribution from the peripheral countries is comparatively small, however there are a good number of contributions from the South-East Asian countries. Estonia is the fastest growing country in terms of having indexed journals in Scopus, following by Iran and Malaysia. Among the studied indices, it was found that publication success (total publications and total citations) of 102 countries are strongly correlated with quantity (number of indexed journals and number of documents published in indexed journals) and quality (citations per paper, SJR, h-index, CiteScore and SNIP) indicators of country’s journals. We can conclude that the scientific productivity of a country depend critically on the number of journals indexed from that country in citation databases. The study provides a context with which the relative success of publications can be assessed, yielding new insights into the scientific impact of individual countries and the performance of journals that they published.

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Fig. 1


  1. SCImago Journal Rank, developed by SCImago.

  2. Source Normalized Impact per Publication, developed by CWTS.


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The work of A. Abrizah was supported by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (HIR-MOHE) UM.C/HIR/MOHE/FCSIT/11. Conceived the paper: AA. Designed the experiments: MAE, AA. Performed the experiments: MAE, MT. Analyzed the data: MT, AA. Contributed materials/analysis tools: MAE, MT. Wrote the paper: MAE, MT, AA. Data Collection: MAE.

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Correspondence to Mohammadamin Erfanmanesh.

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Erfanmanesh, M., Tahira, M. & Abrizah, A. The Publication Success of 102 Nations in Scopus and the Performance of Their Scopus-Indexed Journals. Pub Res Q 33, 421–432 (2017).

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