(17 Mar 2021) China is growing in dominance in Asia-Pacific collaborations, according to the Nature Index 2021 Asia Pacific supplement, published today. The supplement draws on Nature Index data to track trends in research output and collaboration in the Asia-Pacific region. The strongest partnership in the region is between Australia and China, however among leading APAC countries India has the fastest-growing research relationship with China, with an increase of 261 percent in Collaboration Score* since 2015. Overall, the United States, Germany and the UK remain important collaboration partners for Asia Pacific but their partnerships in the region are neither as large nor growing as fast as those of the region with China. The US-China research partnership has grown 56 percent since 2015 – a larger increase than for the US with other leading research countries of APAC.
In terms of output, the Asia-Pacific region’s share of global output tracked by the Nature Index has grown from 26.9 percent to 34.3 percent since 2015, with China responsible for more than 98 percent of the increase. Without China, the region’s share of output would have declined slightly, in part due to the 2015-2020 slide in Japan’s contribution. Other countries in the region are also showing an increase in research output. The APAC Rising Countries list (available online) places Vietnam and Thailand second and third in terms of output tracked by the Nature Index following China. The top three APAC institutions according to Nature Index data from 2020 are the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the University of Science and Technology of China and The University of Tokyo.
In addition to trends in research output and collaboration, the supplement explores important areas of research for the region such as climate change and sustainability, and lists the most influential institutions. The supplement also examines how the pandemic has driven India’s quest for greater scientific self-sufficiency through the search for indigenous Covid-19 vaccines. Furthermore, it explores innovations developed in the region such as novel magnetic and superconducting properties of materials developed by researchers from Japan and South Korea.
The press release in full can be found here.