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The scenario of Brazilian health sciences in the period of 1981 to 1995
Pereira JCR, Escuder MML
45: (1) 95-105 MAY 1999

Ensuing a previous study of Brazilian sciences production for the period 1981-95, health sciences were taken apart for scrutiny. ISI data was obtained in an aggregate format comprising 40 health research fields recording their yearly number of papers, proportion out of the country, proportion out of the field, and impact relative to field.

Simple linear regression was used to examine time trends in production and impact of research fields. A complementary variable representing growth trend was computed as the regression slope. Data were then analysed by means of Factor and Correspondence Analysis. Results allowed the production of location maps of research fields so that hierarchy and relationships among them could be examined in the form of geometric distances.

It was found that health sciences represent 42% of the Brazilian scientific production and that their trends in both production and impact do not differ from other sciences taken altogether. Measurements of production were found negatively correlated with impact and factor analysis revealed that the major distinction between fields is attributable to production (64% of measurement variations against 19% due to impact). Experimental Biology & Medicine largely exceeds other fields in production, though at ordinary levels of impact. Correspondence analysis refined the study of impact allowing the identification of the best performers as Clinical Immunology & Infectious Diseases, Environmental & Social Medicine, and Radiology & Nuclear Medicine.

The information provided can advise national policy makers on science & technology about priorities concerning the improvement of the country's competitiveness.

KeyWords Plus:

Pereira JCR, Inst Dante Pazzanese Cardiol, Lab Epidemiol & Stat, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Inst Dante Pazzanese Cardiol, Lab Epidemiol & Stat, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Inst Hlth, Res Support Grp, Sao Paulo, Brazil.


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Laboratório de Epidemiologia e Estatítisca.