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China's global growth in social science research: Uncovering evidence from bibliometric analyses of SSCI publications (1978–2013)

Weishu Liu, Guangyuan Hu, Li Tang and Yuandi Wang

Journal of Informetrics, 2015, vol. 9, issue 3, 555-569

Abstract: The phenomenon of China's rise as an emerging scientific power has been well documented, yet the development of its social science is less explored. Utilizing up-to-date Social Science Citation Index (SSCI) publication data (1978–2013), this paper probes the patterns and dynamics of China's social science research via bibliometric analyses. Our research indicates that despite the national orientation of social science research and the linguistic obstacle of publishing for an international audience, China's publications in the SSCI dataset have been rising in terms of volume, world share, and global ranking. But China is still not yet a major player in the arena of social sciences, as is evidenced by the number of Chinese journals indexed in SSCI and the lack of Olympic players. Team research features China's international publishing in social science, but the research outputs are highly unbalanced at regional and institutional levels.

Keywords: Large-scale bibliometric analysis; Research evaluation; Social sciences development; China; Science and technology policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015
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