China will not surpass the United States before 2020

Tomas Baiget baiget at SARENET.ES
Sun Feb 12 05:53:03 EST 2012

Dear colleagues, 

El profesional de la información (IF=0.375, SJR=0.027)
publishes an article by Loet Leydesdorff (h=53), professor of Communication and Innovation in the Dynamics of Science and Technology at the University of Amsterdam, in its current issue:

Leydesdorff, Loet. “World shares of publications of the USA, EU-27, and China compared and predicted using the new Web of Science interface versus Scopus”. El profesional de la información, 2012, enero-febrero, v. 21, n. 1, pp. 43-49.

Abstract: The new interface of the Web of Science (Thomson Reuters) enables users to retrieve sets larger than 100,000 documents in a single search. This makes it possible to compare publication trends for China, the USA, EU-27, and smaller countries, with the data in the Scopus (Elsevier) database. China no longer grew exponentially during the 2000s, but linearly. Contrary to previous predictions on the basis of exponential growth, the cross-over of the lines for China and the USA is postponed to the next decade (after 2020) according to this data. These long extrapolations, however, should be used only as indicators and not as predictions. Uncertainty in trends can be specified using the coefficient of determination of the regression (R2) and confidence intervals. Along with the dynamics in the publication trends, one also has to take into account the dynamics of the databases used for the measurement.

The article is available in open access on both EPI web sites:

It also has been translated into Spanish in:



Tomàs Baiget
baiget at
Tel.: +34-639 878 489


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