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What does h-index mean and how can countries be ranked by it?


H-index is a quantitative and qualitative measure related to scientific papers which evaluates the scientific impact of researchers, universities or countries. The United States, China, Germany and Singapore got the highest scores for the nano-articles in the five years up to 2016, according to StatNano report. Iran is ranked 18th in this ranking.

August 26, 2017 Scientific

H-index can be used to distinguish influential researchers from those who have just published a large number of articles. In fact, this criterion is a quantitative and qualitative measure of scientific articles, being used to assess the scientific impact of a research team, for example, a university or a country. This index is calculated based on the number of published papers by the researcher and the number of their citations by other literature. More precisely, h-index of 10 means that the researcher or research team has published 10 authentic publications within a given time period, each of which has been cited at least 10 times since the release date. The calculation of H-index is done by Web of Science, Scopus, and Google scholar for English-language articles.
The StatNano Database has extracted and published the value of this index for the nano-articles of various countries in the recent five years by the end of 2016 (2012-2016) from the Web of Science. According to the statistics, USA is ranked first with h-index of 269. Subsequently, China is ranked second with h-index of 238, and Germany, Singapore and South Korea have achieved the subsequent positions in this ranking, respectively. Singapore's rank in this index is interesting. Singaporean researchers have published about 11460 nano-articles in the recent five years and have been ranked 18th in terms of the number of articles, while their h-index is higher than that of South Korea and very close to Germany’s. The number of nanotechnology-related publications by both countries has been nearly four times more than that of Singapore in this period. The position of Switzerland and Australia in this ranking is fascinating in terms of the number of nano-articles (twenty-one and thirteenth, respectively), indicating higher scientific efficiency and influence of the scientists in these countries. Iran has also published more than 29,000 nano-articles over the past five years and is now ranked eighteenth with h-index of 83.
The following curve shows the ranking of 35 countries active in nanotechnology (except for USA and China) in terms of h-index and number of nano-articles. The quantity and quality of nano-articles in those countries whose statistics are closer to the hypothetical curve are more in balance.

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