Facts on Science, Technology and Innovation

Southeast Asia and European Union



Short summary on „Co-publication analysis among ASEAN countries and their collaboration with the EU28+AC”

Over two years from 2014 to 2016, the SEA-EU-NET analysis team carried out analyses of research output in ASEAN Member States, combining Web of Science and Scopus statistics. Here are some results (see www.sea-eu.net for more details):

In the examined time span of 2004 to 2014, the overall ASEAN scientific output in terms of scholarly publications amounted to ca. 550,000. The growth of annual output has been striking in this decade: In 2004, around 23,000 publications with ASEAN-based authors were indexed in the citation databases. In 2014, it was 80,000. Output thus more than tripled (to a certain extent this also has to do with improved database coverage of local journals).

Out of all ASEAN countries, Singapore (SG) has the highest number of publications (Singapore-based authors are involved in 34% of all ASEAN output). On the other hand, Malaysia (MY) is growing fastest in terms of its publication output since 2004 and now has the highest annual publication output in the region. Differences in annual output of the ASEAN Member States have increased 2004-2014, which reflects different levels in R&D investment.

International collaboration plays a major role in the publication output of the ASEAN region. Overall, around 39% of the publications in ASEAN are international co-publications. In the most recent years, the share has been slightly above 40%. Globally, the EU is the strongest partner in co-publication collaboration. 32% of all international co-publications (and 13% of all publications) in ASEAN feature at least one EU-based co-author. Other important co-publication partners are the USA, China, Japan, Australia, and India.

International collaboration shares vary considerably among the ASEAN Member States. 66% of publications with Vietnam-based authors involve at least one international co-author. In the Philippines, it's 55% of the publications, in Thailand only 38%.

As regards the research areas in Southeast Asian publication output,  strongest in terms of number of national publications as well as international co-publications are Clinical Medicine, Information & Communication Technologies (ICTs), and Engineering. These thematic output patterns are fairly consistent with global patterns with the exception of a greater relevance of ICTs in Southeast Asian output compared to global output.

The analysis of thematic patterns in output becomes more fruitful when combined with the analysis of geographic patterns. In the case of Clinical Medicine, the strongest intra-ASEAN ties are Malaysia-Singapore, Thailand-Singapore, and Malaysia-Thailand. The strongest international co-publications in this field were recorded for Thailand-USA, Thailand-EU, and Singapore-Australia. Clinical Medicine is almost always at the top of each country's co-publication ties; exceptions are Biology and Earth and Environmental Sciences in case of Indonesia-Germany, Physics and Astronomy in case of Vietnam-Germany, and Biology as well as Chemistry in case of Myanmar-Germany. Another noteworthy exception on the intra-ASEAN level is Malaysia-Indonesia, where Clinical medicine is considerably weaker than in other country ties. In case of both Engineering and Information & Communication Technologies, the strongest intra-ASEAN ties are attributed to Indonesia-Malaysia and Malaysia-Singapore (other country ties are far behind their output level), the strongest international ties to Singapore-China, Singapore-USA, and Singapore-EU.

We have developed an interactive web-based visualisation (works best in Firefox and Safari browser!) to help the users of our data to explore it according to their own interest. What this tool allows you to do is to find our quickly

  • What are the most important partner countries in ASEAN-EU cooperation of my country (put your mouse over a country and see the major cooperation partner countries highlighted in red)?
  • How does the situation evolve over the years (use the heatmap in the middle to find information on the changes from one year to the next)?
  • How does the situation change from one topic to another (use the dropdown menu on the bottom left to change from ASEAN-ERA data to ASEAN-ERA data in specific topics)?

We are happy to also provide you with the slides from two recent presentations on bibliometric and patent analyses held in Bangkok and Singapore respectively (again, please use Firefox to ensure the slides work properly):

For further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the SEA-EU-NET bibliometrics team through Dietmar Lampert or Alexander Degelsegger.

This project has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological
development and demonstration under grant agreement no 311784.

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