4.1 Benchmarking Nano-science and Technology
This chapter addresses methodologies prepared and analyses undertaken using publication data from the Database of Nanotechnology Scientific Publications as created by MERIT. It includes statistics and
indicators drawn from the database as well as further, sectoral, analysis of the data.
Recognized bibliometric techniques are employed to visualize the current state of nanotechnology basic research in the EU 27 and Switzerland, as well as putting it into an historical and global perspective. Set theory mathematics are used to define 10 industrial sectors which are subsequently analysed. Through this furether analysis deeper insights are gained into the sectoral characteristics of basic research in nanotechnology within the EU-27 and Switzerland. Here the report offers summary statistics as well indicators of quality and cross-sectoral research intensity.
Furthermore, through the comparison of publication and patent data1, we show that the “European Paradox” exists for nanotechnology, but with the caveat that through a decreased percentage for the EU of the total publication pool this gap might not be as wide as earlier presumed.
However, in the area of publication quality and efficiency some reassuring signs can be seen. Here the EU-27 and Switzerland are, still, leading. The large EU countries, including Germany, France, United Kingdom, and Italy, still dominate the ranking of EU countries by number of the publications as well as citations. It needs to be noticed that some East European countries, notably Poland, are catching up in terms of total publications.
A clearly visible trend, extended from last year when we noted that The weight of the world’s
nanotechnology scientific research to some extent has been shifting from North America and Europe to Asia in the period of 1998-2007, is that the BRICS countries led by China, and South Korea, are still steadily gaining ground.
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