Richard Van Noorden
The expanding economies of South America have led to a significant rise in scientific output over the past two decades, and research spending has increased in most countries. But given the region’s share of the world’s population and gross domestic product (GDP), publication rates still fall short of what would be expected. Research quality has not kept pace with rising output, and the continent’s research papers still struggle to attract citations from the rest of the world.
There are huge inequalities across the region, too: Brazil dominates the publication record, for example, whereas Chile takes pole position in the patent landscape and Argentina scores highly in terms of the proportion of its population working in science.
Source: Nature, 11-06-2014.