Springer Nature: Beijing tops first in Nature Index 2021 Science Cities

Editor’s note: During the 2021 Zhongguancun Forum, which is held in Beijing from September 24 to 28, 2021, CGTN spoke to China President of Springer Nature Niels Peter Thomas to discuss how Chinese scientific research has become more pronounced on the world stage over  the past two decades. Springer Nature is a leading research, educational and professional publisher, which owns high-profile scientific journal Nature.

Beijing tops the Nature Index 2021 Science Cities list for contributing the most to scientific advancement, China President of Springer Nature Niels Peter Thomas said at the 2021 Zhongguancun Forum on Saturday, attributing this to the success of the Chinese research and development over the past years.

Chinese contribution to world science journals improved greatly, Thomas said, illustrating that the number of articles in Nature that were connected with Chinese authorship or Chinese authors coming from research and institutions in China surged to 18 percent in 2020, compared with barely zero in 1997.  

Chinese contribution to science journals is not only reflected in the quantity, but also in the quality, he said.

Looking at 82 leading journals worldwide, the latest Nature Index showed that China’s participation and contribution has moved to the second place in the world, contributing to the highest quality research articles.01:52

The following excerpts from an interview with Thomas have been edited for clarity and brevity.

CGTN: How big are the impacts that Chinese scientists bring to the global science and technology research? 

Thomas: It’s really impressive how much Chinese research has accelerated on the world stage. In the major research outlet, the number of Chinese researchers involved has much grown since then. 

Taking the Nature journal alone as an example, we can see that from 1997 to 2020, the number of articles that were connected with Chinese authorship or Chinese authors coming from research and institutions in China rose from 0.5 percent to 18 percent. 

CGTN: What experiences we could draw from the COVID-19 and what’s the best way to promote global cooperation in this area?

Thomas: All major publishers decided from the beginning, that everything directly related to COVID-19 should be open accessed, published and opened up, everything for every institution. 

No matter if there was subscription or not, so every researcher, or every person in the world, can read everything, every research result about COVID, which actually we have seen a very impressive pace of treatment, vaccinations, and all kinds of knowledge gathering around this. 

I think this is the biggest lesson learnt that open access does work, open access and open science is the way to go, to accelerate scientific advancement.

Source: CGTN, 26-Sep-2021 https://news.cgtn.com/news/2021-09-26/Springer-Nature-Beijing-tops-1st-in-Nature-Index-2021-Science-Cities–13SonNJs2CQ/index.html?fbclid=IwAR24jIzaiyJJ7USDZ3im03SnO_Z4OghjPDbNYUKtkwjOCcuGw1MKT4-gVR0