Malaysian academics ‘surprisingly’ beat Thais, Singaporeans for research papers

KUALA LUMPUR, April 5 — Malaysian researchers produced 47,000 articles curated by Elsevier or nearly twice as many as their Thai counterparts, according to the world’s largest database of intellectual material.

In a report by Thai newspaper The Nation, Malaysians also surpassed Singaporean researchers who have 34,000 articles registered on Elsevier.

“A big surprise is Malaysia, which started very low in 2005 and surpassed Thailand in 2009 and is now far above Singapore in the number of researchers,” Elsevier senior vice president Michiel Kolman was quoted as saying by The Nation.

Kolman said the sharp growth in the number of researchers was because the Malaysian government dramatically boosted funding compared to the Thai government, whose funding level has stagnated in recent years.

“They (Malaysia) have money. They hire researchers. The researchers are active, so that the output is high,” he explained.

According to the article, Malaysian researchers submit approximately 24,000 academic articles annually, compared to Singapore’s 16,000.

Thailand was third, ahead of Indonesia with its 3,000 articles per year, the Philippines (1,000) and Laos (below 500).

In the article, Elsevier did not specify the topics covered by the articles or provide a qualitative assessment of the countries’ submissions.

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