Analysis of 2 million scholars reveals which countries study the hardest, and why Open Access is critical for developing countries

LONDON, Nov. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, marking the occasion of surpassing two million users of its service, London-based startup Mendeley has published the Global Research Report- a unique analysis of two million scholars' research activity in relation to economic indicators and research productivity. The Global Research Report draws on the unique usage statistics of Mendeley's desktop- and cloud-based research collaboration platform, which is used by academics in the sciences and humanities in over 180 countries to manage their research workflows.

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The report reveals the extent to which a country's GDP per capita and R&D expenditure per capita limit its researchers' access to academic papers. Developing countries are facing considerable challenges: To afford each of their researchers access to an additional 50 research papers, developing countries require a ten-fold increase in R&D expenditure per capita. This highlights the importance of the recent trend towards Open Access publishing for making researchers in developing countries more competitive.

The data also demonstrates that having less access to research papers restricts daily studying time, which in turn is linked to a country's research productivity: The higher the daily studying time, the more citable publications and Nobel Laureates a country produces.

Finally, the Global Research Report provides rankings on which countries, world regions, and universities are reading the most academic papers and spending the most time per day studying the literature (only countries with at least 1,000 Mendeley users were included).

On a global average, an academic's research paper collection contains 142.8 documents. The top three world regions, countries, and research institutions by size of their academics' research paper collection are:

World Region


Research Institution

1. Western Europe: 187.1

1. Argentina: 267.6

1. University of Lausanne: 383.1

2. North America: 171.6

2. France: 232.6

2. United States Geological Survey: 380.4

3. East Asia: 156.2

3. Germany: 222.9

3. Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle: 379.1

In September 2012, the average researcher spent 1:12h per day studying the academic literature. The top three regions, countries, and institutions by their researchers' daily studying time are:

World Region


Research Institution

1. Western Europe: 1:19h

1. Netherlands: 1:25h

1. Durham University: 1:47h

2. Oceania: 1:18h

2. South Africa: 1:24h

2. ENS Lyon: 1:44h

3. East Asia: 1:15h

3. United Kingdom: 1:22h

3. University of Manchester: 1:39h

China comes in 4th in daily studying time, while the United States rank 49th globally. Complete data can be found in the Global Research Report.

Commenting on the release of the report, Dr. Victor Henning, CEO & Co-Founder of Mendeley, said: "I hope that the global research community is as fascinated by this data as we are. Looking at the rankings, maybe tomorrow professors worldwide will put up notices in their labs: 'Less cat pictures, more studying!'"

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For more information, contact:
Dr. Victor Henning, CEO, Mendeley, +44 20 7617 7519

SOURCE Mendeley