Monday, November 12, 2018

Pakistan's Scientific Output Doubles in 5 Years

Pakistan's quality-adjusted scientific output (Weighted Functional Count) as reported in Nature Index has doubled from 18.03 in 2013 to 37.28 in 2017. Pakistan's global ranking has improved from 53 in 2013 to 40 in 2017. In the same period, India's WFC has increased from 850.97 in 2013 to 935.44 in 2017. India's global ranking has improved from 13 in 2013 to 11 in 2017.

Top 10 Pakistan Institutions in Scientific Output. Source: Nature Index
Pakistan's Global Ranking:

Pakistan ranks 40 among 161 countries for quality adjusted scientific output for year 2017 as reported by Nature Index 2018.  Pakistan ranks 40 with quality-adjusted scientific output of 37.28. India ranks 11 with 935. Malaysia ranks 61 with 6.73 and Indonesia ranks 63 with 6.41. Bangladesh ranks 100 with 0.81. Sri Lanka ranks 84 with 1.36. US leads with almost 15,800, followed by China's 7,500, Germany 3,800, UK 3,100 and Japan 2,700.

Nature Index:

The Nature Index is a database of author affiliation information collated from research articles published in an independently selected group of 82 high-quality science journals. The database is compiled by Nature Research. The Nature Index provides a close to real-time proxy of high-quality research output and collaboration at the institutional, national and regional level.

The Nature Index includes primary research articles published in a group of high-quality science journals. The journals included in the Nature Index are selected by a panel of active scientists, independently of Nature Research. The selection process reflects researchers’ perceptions of journal quality, rather than using quantitative measures such as Impact Factor. It is intended that the list of journals amounts to a reasonably consensual upper echelon of journals in the natural sciences and includes both multidisciplinary journals and some of the most highly selective journals within the main disciplines of the natural sciences. The journals included in the Nature Index represent less than 1% of the journals covering natural sciences in the Web of Science (Clarivate Analytics) but account for close to 30% of total citations to natural science journals.

Pakistan vs BRICS:

In a report titled "Pakistan: Another BRIC in the Wall", author Lulian Herciu says that Pakistan’s scientific productivity has quadrupled, from approximately 2,000 articles per year in 2006 to more than 9,000 articles in 2015. During this time, the number of Highly Cited Papers featuring Pakistan-based authors increased tenfold, from 9 articles in 2006 to 98 in 2015.

Top Asian Universities:

British ranking agency Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has recently ranked 23 Pakistani universities among the top 500 Asian universities for 2019, up from 16 in 2018.  Other South Asian universities figuring in the QS top universities report are 75 from India, 6 from Bangladesh and 4 from Sri Lanka.

In terms of the number of universities ranking in Asia's top 500, Pakistan with its 23 universities ranks second in South Asia and 7th among 17 Asian nations topped by China with 112, Japan 89, India 75, South Korea 57, Taiwan 36, Malaysia 26, Pakistan 23, Indonesia 22, Thailand 19, Philippines 8, Hong Kong 7, Vietnam 7, Bangladesh 6, Sri Lanka 4, Singapore 3, Macao 2 and Brunei 2.

Summary:

Pakistan's quality-adjusted scientific output (WFC) as reported in Nature Index has doubled from 18.03 in 2013 to 37.28 in 2017. Pakistan's global ranking has improved from 53 in 2013 to 40 in 2017.  Pakistan ranks 40 with quality-adjusted scientific output of 37.28. India ranks 11 with 935. Malaysia ranks 61 with 6.73 and Indonesia ranks 63 with 6.41. Bangladesh ranks 100 with 0.81. Sri Lanka ranks 84 with 1.36.  In a report titled "Pakistan: Another BRIC in the Wall", author Lulian Herciu says that Pakistan’s scientific productivity has quadrupled, from approximately 2,000 articles per year in 2006 to more than 9,000 articles in 2015. During this time, the number of Highly Cited Papers featuring Pakistan-based authors increased tenfold, from 9 articles in 2006 to 98 in 2015.   British ranking agency Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has recently ranked 23 Pakistani universities among the top 500 Asian universities for 2019, up from 16 in 2018.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Pakistan Hi-Tech Exports Exceed A Billion US Dollars in 2018 

Pakistan Becomes CERN Member

Pakistani Scientists at CERN

Rising College Enrollment in Pakistan

Pakistani Universities Listed Among Asia's Top 500 Jump From 16 to 23 in One Year

Genomics and Biotech Research in Pakistan

Human Capital Growth in Pakistan

Educational Attainment in Pakistan

Pakistan Human Development in Musharraf Years

14 comments:

19640909rk said...

Riaz Bhai,

Just recently, there was an DAWN article by an eminent Pakistani Scientist, Mr. Parvez Hoodbhoy. Please go through the article and you will get better idea of what is Pakistani "Scientific Output" really means. Statistics from Pakistan can be misleading.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1342483

Riaz Haq said...

19640909rk: "Statistics from Pakistan can be misleading."

The statistics I have shared in this post are not "from Pakistan". The papers included by Nature Index are "research articles published in an independently selected group of 82 high-quality science journals". And "the journals included in the Nature Index represent less than 1% of the journals covering natural sciences in the Web of Science (Clarivate Analytics) but account for close to 30% of total citations to natural science journals".

Read the following:

The Nature Index is a database of author affiliation information collated from research articles published in an independently selected group of 82 high-quality science journals. The database is compiled by Nature Research. The Nature Index provides a close to real-time proxy of high-quality research output and collaboration at the institutional, national and regional level.

The Nature Index includes primary research articles published in a group of high-quality science journals. The journals included in the Nature Index are selected by a panel of active scientists, independently of Nature Research. The selection process reflects researchers’ perceptions of journal quality, rather than using quantitative measures such as Impact Factor. It is intended that the list of journals amounts to a reasonably consensual upper echelon of journals in the natural sciences and includes both multidisciplinary journals and some of the most highly selective journals within the main disciplines of the natural sciences. The journals included in the Nature Index represent less than 1% of the journals covering natural sciences in the Web of Science (Clarivate Analytics) but account for close to 30% of total citations to natural science journals.

A Patriot said...

@19640909rk:

Hoodbhoy is a mix of Hussain Haqqani and Cyril Almeida... a paid traitor whose job is to publish negative and socially divisive propaganda against Pakistan.

If you must know, Nature Index measures "highly cited papers".. which refers to the top 1% of papers in the research field published in the world in the specified year. These are the type of papers Hoodbhoy would give a kidney for. Being an academic, he knows fully well the significance of the nature index, but he has absolutely no shame and lies through his teeth in the article.

The 2002 setback he refers to is his favorite pasttime.. taking shots at the work done by Prof. Atta ur Rehman, who is probably pakistan's most renowned scientist alive and who was appointed by Musharraf as chairman of HEC. Prof. Rehman brought a revolution in higher education in the country.

Dr. Hoodbhoy projects himself as a peer/rival to Pakistan's most eminent scientist living: Prof. Atta ur Rehman, whose status as Pakistan's brightest scientific mind led Musharraf to appoint him as Chairman of HEC and whose contributions as HEC Chairman capacity are held in esteem throughout the world, as some of the awards and appointments he was given during and after his tenure as HEC Chairman attest to:
- Honorary life fellow of King's College, Cambridge (UK's top ranked institution), and fellow of royal society
- Austria's highest civil award in 2007
- Italy's National Award in 2009
- Awarded by Chinese Academy of Science multiple times, including a honorary professorship
- Highest Chinese Civil award "Friendship Award of China" in 2014
- innumerable other awards and honorary memberships
- after his work in Pakistan he was made President of OIC's Academy of Science
- Has also been made Co-Chair of UN Committee on Science, Tech and Innovation.

You can compare Hoodbhoy's awards with these. Hoodboy these days is a professor at Forman Christian College. Not much of a peer position to the former HEC Chairman, Minister for Science and Technology, President of OIC's Academy of Science, and the first Muslim to receive the UNESCO Science Prize.

And, btw, Hoodbhoy refused to accept the Sitara-e-Imtiaz in 2001, saying (quote from wikipedia):

"receiving an [award] – even if it is a high national award – would give me absolutely no sense of achievement or satisfaction... because it carries no credibility or prestige in professional circles"

He was probably bitter because Prof. Attaur Rehman was awarded the Nishan-e-Imtiaz (highest national civil award)

He is also well known to be a bit of a sour loser. He is a well known nuclear physicist, but for some reason he was not given much of a role in pakistan's nuclear program, or if he did, his work did not get any recognition. This is probably a reason why he became a bitter opponent of Pakistan's nuclear program and even went to the extent of publicly questioning their security and the danger of their falling in the hands of extremists.

At one time, when LUMS decided not to renew his contract, he went public and accused the university of not renewing his contract (which was well within the university's rights) because of a course that he was teaching about 'Science and religion'. Despite not having a shred of evidence to prove it. Despite that the fact that other professors taught similar courses on evolution and similar topics, and they never got fired. He probably was trying to use the controversy to get an offer from a western university by projecting himself as a scientist from a muslim country persecuted for his modern scientific thoughts.


Signs of a great patriot.

................................continued

A Patriot said...

continued ....................


There is a lot more than can be written about Hoodboy and the motivation for his articles, but let me just counter that article you linked:

1. His claims that HEC's policies encouraging research, publication of papers, and pursuance of Ph.Ds have turned pakistan's universities into factories producing low quality papers are absolutely false.

Publishing of low quality papers just for points is much much more widespread in India and China than in Pakistan. In fact, it is a problem in every developing country where the institutional checks that prevent plagiarism and fake research are under-developed.

2. He says that when, in a bid to boost research and production of PhD degrees, the HEC significantly increased perks for faculty members, the HEC encouraged fake research is also wrong.

The HEC was actually trying to prevent brain drain of highly qualified researchers and faculty from the country, riaz's article today showing that Pakistan has become the 40th ranked country in highly-cited research proves the HEC policies have worked.

3. Hoodboy says "It is time to reject the grotesque distortion of priorities and reorient Pakistan’s universities towards their major responsibility and purpose — teaching"

Scientists and academics the world over would laugh at this statement. Every top university in the west (in the world rather) focuses on research as its primary endeavor. Universities are research centers, more than they are teaching institutions. I think serving as a college professor has distorted Hoodboy's perceptions on what a university is supposed to do.

Rizwan said...

@A Patriot

Thanks for the very well thought out critique of Hoodbhoy. I share your sentiments.

A Patriot said...

@Rizwan: Thanks, appreciate your kind words. Such people need to be put in their place because they only deal damage to the image of the country through their lies.

Also wanted to add for the benefit of the readers:

1. For anyone who thinks that all research papers published by Pakistan's universities are like that of the mass trash that is coming out of India (and previously China as well), here is an actual report backed by facts:

http://ip-science.interest.thomsonreuters.com/incites-pakistan/

The above study by Thomson Reuters says:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Pakistan’s Highly Cited Papers have increased ten fold in the last 10 years.

In the last decade, Pakistan’s scientific productivity increased by more than 4 times, from approximately 2,000 articles per year in 2006 to more than 9,000 articles in 2015. During this time, the number of Highly Cited Papers featuring Pakistan-based authors increased tenfold, from 9 articles in 2006 to 98 in 2015.

Furthermore, in the last 10 years Pakistan has emerged as the country with the highest percentage of Highly Cited Papers compared with the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China)."
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

So a four-fold increase in overall number of papers, but a ten-fold increase in number of highly-cited papers. This fact alone is enough to prove how false hoodboy's claims are.

2. Dr. Atta ur Rehman, whom hoodboy so regularly criticizes, also happens to be one of only 4 scientists from the Muslim world to have ever been elected as a fellow of the Royal Society in the last 350 years when the Royal Society was established, and the only scıentıst to be so recognısed for researches carrıed out wıthın a Islamıc country.
This is from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atta-ur-Rahman_(chemist)

Here is Prof Rehman's researchgate profile: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Atta-ur-Rahman
And here is Hoodboy's: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Pervez_Hoodbhoy

Prof Rehman has close to 1000 research papers listed on researchgate, and some 10,000 citations. On google scholar his citation count is more than 17,000. He is probably pakistan's most prolific researcher alive.

Hoodboy has 105 papers listed on researchgate. Funnily MOST of those seem to be on topics that have nothing to do with Physics. He seems to write more papers on social or political science issues as you can tell from the titles: "Speculations on nuclear South Asia" or "STATES UNDER SIEGE: RISING TERRORISM AND THE ASCENT OF POLITICAL ISLAM" or "Pakistan's army: Divided it stands".

The point is: If you're going to believe somebody's claims on the state of science & research in Pakistan, whose will it be? A low-grade nuclear physicist who seems to have taken to writing articles and teaching geopolitics and religio-political issues more than actual physics, or the country's top scientist who has actual experience formulating policies at the highest level both in Pakistan and


3. Dr Atta ur Rehman as chairman HEC had done incredible work for the growth of higher education and science in Pakistan before his resignation due to developing differences with the PPP govt. The PTI Govt should seriously consider giving him charge of the institution once again, or appoint him as Minister for Education or Science & Technology, or an advisor the the PM on education and research. He will put the house in order.

Athar O. said...

The ECNEC Meeting chaired by FM Asad Umar approved Pakistan Space Center (PSC) worth about PKR 30 billion today. This will be a high tech facility to build satellites in Pakistan in collaboration with China and will transfer this important technology to Pakistan. This is the single largest investment in civilian scientific and technological capability - about 15 years worth of development budget for Ministry of Science and Technology.

Taking note of our recommendations ECNEC asked SUPARCO to produce a concrete plan for transfer of technology and development of downstream vendor industry to support future satellite development activity and a commercial plan for developing satellites for other countries. Space Vision 2047 dictates that Pakistan will spend roughly $1.5-2 billion in satellite development over the next 20-25 years and a lot of this money (and capability) should go to the private sector to enable them to compete globally in high technology exports.

This is an extremely important step and is in line with the National Framework on Civilian Spillovers of Defense and Strategic R&D that we've been developing at the Planning Commission for the last year or so. It was heartening to see support from several ministers including Asad Umar, Razak Dawood, and Ishrat Hussain to add this important element to our National Space Vision 2047. Right from the beginning of ECNEC, somehow local capacity development featured as a very important point in the discussions on all projects. Overall a good day that makes over year and a half of pain and hardwork with our partners in SUPARCO and other defense agencies worthwhile! :)

This and PAF's NGFA project, if done right, could be game changers for development of critical scientific and technological capability in the private sector over the next decade or two.

Anonymous said...

Israel at 15 and Singapore at 16, while India at 11? That sounds right.

The journals included in the Nature Index are selected by a panel of active scientists, independently of Nature Research. The selection process reflects researchers’ perceptions of journal quality, rather than using quantitative measures such as Impact Factor.

Riaz Haq said...

Anon: "Israel at 15 and Singapore at 16, while India at 11? That sounds right."

Let's put this perspective:


India pop: 1.34 billion Quality-Adjusted Papers (WFC): 936

China pop: 1.39 billion Quality-Adjusted Papers (WFC): 7,449

Singapore: pop: 5.6 million Quality-Adjusted Papers (WFC): 480

Israel: pop: 8.7 million Quality-Adjusted Papers (WFC): 484

Shouldn't India compare itself with equally populous China rather than tiny Israel and tiny Singapore?

Riaz Haq said...

#Google's Lars Anthonisen, head of large customer marketing: #Pakistan is fast emerging "digital-first country". Pakistan will "produce one of the largest #digital audiences in the world" and is, therefore, a growing market for foreign #investors. https://www.dawn.com/news/1445982/google-lists-5-reasons-that-make-pakistan-an-attractive-place-for-foreign-investors

Google's Head of Large Customer Marketing, South Asia, Lars Anthonisen believes Pakistan, that he describes as a fast emerging "digital-first country", will prove to be a good investment for entrepreneurs around the world.

Anthonisen believes that Pakistan is on its way to "produce one of the largest digital audiences in the world" and is, therefore, a growing market for foreign investors.

He listed five reasons for companies to expand their digital campaigns to Pakistan in a blog post he wrote for Think with Google, a platform that hosts expert analysis for e-commerce and digital branding in the Asia-Pacific region.

Fast-growing population
According to Anthonisen, Pakistan's fast-growing population means that it has an increasing number of people that go online every day.

He also refers to growing urbanisation in the country, where 40 per cent of total households live in cities. The rate of urbanisation in Pakistan is higher than that of India, which means there are more "potential customers".

SME-driven economy
Anthonisen says that Pakistan's economy — expected to be the fourth fastest growing economy in the world by the year 2030 — is largely driven by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Around 90 per cent of the businesses in Pakistan are SMEs that have a 40 per cent share in the country's gross domestic product.

Increasing number of smartphone users
Pakistan has a sizeable online population due to decreasing smartphone prices and cheap data packages. About 59 million people in Pakistan use smartphones, out of which 83 per cent have Android devices, Anthonisen says. As smartphone prices continue to drop, the number of users is likely to increase.

Also read: 3G and 4G mobile internet users cross 30m milestone

As data prices are "some of the cheapest... in the world", the usage of mobile apps, like YouTube, is increasing.

Internet penetration at a 'tipping point'
Even though internet penetration in Pakistan stands at 22 per cent, Anthonisen claims that digital consumption in the country is on the rise. Currently, there are 4.46 million internet users in the country. He cites the increase in YouTube watch time as an example of increasing digital consumption. The video platform has witnessed a 60 per cent increase in its watch time over the past three years.

Exclusive: The CPEC plan for Pakistan’s digital future

China's investment
According to Anthonisen, the Chinese-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) programme is China's largest investment in a foreign country. One of the projects of that are part of CPEC is the laying of 820 kilometres of fibre-optic cable, that will connect more Pakistanis to the digital world.

Anthonisen advises businesses to "leave a mark" on Pakistan's growing online market to grab the "endless opportunities that it can offer to investors.

Anonymous said...

This bodes well for our soft image Go through profile of Lars Anthonisen. He is a big shot tipped to be future CEO of google. His ex-colleagues consider him a close friend of Pakistan and admirer of our culture.

19640909rk said...

@ A Patriot,

Disagree with you. Parvez Hoodbhoy always wanted to improve the educational status of Pakistan. He gave up comfortable life in USA to work for his nation. Also, he was against political loot of LUMS campus. For this, he became a hated person.

Anonymous said...

As part of ECNEC/SUPARCO deliberations, the first batch of SUPARCO engineers will be dispatched for training before the end of the year. Chinese will share detailed blue prints of PRSS-1 and PakTES-1A and road maps used by Long March rocket. PAC Kamra will also be part of the engineering projects. China will also purchase future launch capabilities once Pakistan matures as a space faring nation.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan’s #digital revolution is happening faster than you think. Growth is being accelerated by other major investments in #power and #connectivity #infrastructure, technology and digital infrastructure. #technology #CPEC https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/11/pakistan-s-digital-revolution-is-happening-faster-than-you-think/ via @wef

The digital power of China’s Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) is slowly unfolding and shaping into a whole new area of opportunity.

When the BRI took global centre stage in 2013, most conversations revolved around traditional infrastructure: building roads, railways, power sources and linking borders. However, the digital awakening that BRI brings, and the associated development of human capital and innovation, is much more powerful.

The global map is being altered at a much faster rate than anticipated due to the disruption created by digital infrastructure, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and blockchain. Further digital and technological disruption is now set to mend fractures in society – leading to improved living conditions and enhanced economic empowerment.

This disruption has given new life to e-commerce and the start-up scene in BRI countries. In light of the Global Competitiveness Index 4.0, it is extremely important that economies grow in all areas, overcoming challenges and making investment in human capital and innovation. Resilience and agility are key.

Looking at the South Asian region, some of the traditional deterrents to growth have been inadequate transport facilities, patchy power supplies and lack of financial inclusion. As we have seen in the past, industrial revolutions take their time to reach developing countries but the Fourth Industrial Revolution has been quick to reach all corners of the world.

Billions of dollars of investment are bridging the infrastructure and power supply gap while improving technology – the goal is to look past the problems that have hindered the road to progress in countries along the BRI.

The flagship project of the BRI, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which is a major collaboration between China and Pakistan, has been rapidly progressing and the impact of the project can be seen in the lives of Pakistani people, as reflected in an improving human development index.

Pakistan, which is emerging from many years of the war on terror, is now on a decent path to progress, with economic growth of 5.8% and improved investor confidence. At the World Economic Forum in 2017, Ebay’s chief executive, Devin Wenig, highlighted Pakistan as one of the fastest growing e-commerce markets in the world. In 2018, Alibaba bought Pakistan’s largest e-commerce platform, Daraz.pk.

..... Ant Financial Services, China’s biggest online payment service provider, recently bought a 45% stake in Telenor Microfinance Bank, in a deal that valued the Pakistani bank at $410 million.

Irfan Wahab, chief executive of Telenor Pakistan, called the deal a “game changer”; while Eric Jing, chief executive of Ant Financial, said it would provide “inclusive financial services in a transparent, safe, low-cost and efficient way to a largely unbanked and underbanked population in Pakistan”.

This kind of investment will benefit from the significant demographic dividend in Pakistan, targeting the largely unbanked young population, and providing not only financial inclusion but also a base on which to build digital businesses.

What the country needs now is to improve its position on the innovation and financial inclusion indices, currently at 89 and 75 respectively, on the World Economic Forum’s Competitiveness Index 2018.

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The rapid completion of CPEC projects and the use of digital technology in the process is disrupting the economy and the lives of people at the same time. The question is whether Pakistan’s leadership will choose to embrace these technologies and take advantage of the biggest project on the road to progress. The future is full of opportunities and promise.