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Scandinavian research in anaesthesiology 1981–2000: visibility and impact in EU and world context

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Abstract:

Background: 

We wished to assess the development in number and impact of publications in anaesthesiology and intensive care medicine from 1981 to 2000 in the four Scandinavian countries: Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark. For comparison, we also analyzed data from the UK and the Netherlands. Methods: 

Publication and citation data from 1981 to 2000 were gathered from National Science Indicators (2001), covering 33 journals indexed in Current Contents. Data were analyzed in running 5-year periods. The following informetric indicators were used: absolute number of publications; absolute number of citations; absolute citation impact (average number of citations per publication per 5-year period); citation impact relative to the European Union and the world; and the percentage of cited papers from each country. Results: 

The annual number of publications from Denmark was stable over the 20-year period. Sweden increased its production by 35%, while the remaining four countries showed increases from 100% to 146%. Thus, Sweden and Denmark lost visibility within the European Union (EU) and in world context. The EU and world citation shares of Finland and Norway increased slightly, whereas those of Sweden, Denmark, the UK, and the Netherlands all declined significantly. The absolute citation impact (ACI) increased for all the four Scandinavian countries. The ACI of the Netherlands did not change and was surpassed by all the Scandinavian countries by 1994–98, while the UK finished below the other five countries. Conclusions: 

(1) The annual number of publications from Sweden, Norway, Finland, the UK, and the Netherlands increased after the late eighties, whereas the net publication output from Denmark was stagnant over the 20-year period investigated; (2) the international publication and citation visibility of Finland and Norway increased slightly, as opposed to the significant decrease seen by the other four countries; (3) judging from the increase in absolute and relative citation impact and in the percentage of cited papers, the recognition of publications from the four Scandinavian countries increased over the past 20 years.

Keywords: anesthesiology*; bibliometrics*; publishing; research*; standards; statistics and numerical data; trends

Document Type: Special Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1399-6576.2004.00447.x

Affiliations: 1: Academic Department of Anaesthesia, Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, Copenhagen University Hospital (Rigshospitalet), and 2: Department of Information Studies, Royal School of Library and Information Science, Copenhagen, Denmark

Publication date: September 1, 2004

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