Machine-generated summaries of three articles are published for the first time as part of a Nature Index supplement
Nature Index Artificial Intelligence (AI) supplement investigates emerging trends in AI research output alongside an experiment in AI-powered curation
London | Sydney | Berlin, 9 December 2020
Escalating computing power, expanding data sets, and algorithms of unprecedented sophistication have led to a massive increase in the number of journal and conference papers referring to AI in recent years. The Nature Index AI supplement, published today, draws on Nature Index data and the larger Dimensions* from Digital Science database to analyse this rapidly advancing and controversial topic. For the first time, the supplement also includes summaries of research articles created using AI, and it looks more broadly at how AI is being used in scholarly publishing.
The Nature Index AI supplement investigates emerging applications of AI such as in detecting deep fakes, drug discovery, and recognising bias in facial recognition. Through the profiles of six researchers, the supplement also includes insights into the people behind advances in astronomy, education and healthcare research powered by AI.
In terms of institutions that publish the most AI-related papers in the high-quality natural-science journals tracked by the Nature Index, three US institutions appear at the top: Harvard University, Stanford University and MIT. In the much larger Dimensions from Digital Science database, which encompasses AI technology development, institutions in China dominate with Tsinghua University number one. Countries with a strong record of AI research: the US, UK and Germany, come in just ahead of China, according to the Nature Index, but in Dimensions China now leads. An infographic also outlines the strongest, most productive collaborations on AI-related papers according to the Nature Index.
The supplement also looks at how AI can be applied in the context of scientific publishing, for example, to create text from structured datasets, to summarise papers, allow readers to more easily find relevant papers, and even identify possible alternative destinations for papers that have been rejected from journals. The Nature Index AI supplement includes an experiment in auto-summarisation. Different AI generated summaries of research articles published by Springer Nature are included.
David Swinbanks, Founder of the Nature Index, said: “As one of the most rapidly advancing and controversial topics in research, AI pertains to many aspects of our lives. The Nature Index AI supplement outlines some of the key trends and applications in research. It highlights that top Western institutions dominate in the use of AI in natural science research tracked by the index, while China dominates the applied research in the broad Dimensions database. As AI research output continues to increase, we hope that this supplement can draw attention to some of these advances, but also the ethical and technical challenges that lie ahead. Of particular note is the way that AI is now being used in the scientific publishing industry, where there is much scope to improve the way researchers find and digest content using the power of AI.”
Note: The Nature Index is one indicator of institutional research performance. The metrics of Count and Share used to order Nature Index listings are based on an institution’s or country’s publication output in 82 natural science journals, selected on reputation by an independent panel of leading scientists in their fields. The Nature Index recognises that many other factors must be taken into account when considering research quality and institutional performance; Nature Index metrics alone should not be used to assess institutions or individuals. Nature Index data and methods are transparent and available under a creative commons license at natureindex.com.
*Dimensions is a modern, innovative, linked-research-knowledge system that re-imagines discovery and access to research. Developed by Digital Science in collaboration with over 100 leading research organizations around the world, Dimensions brings together grants, publications, citations, alternative metrics, clinical trials, patents and datasets to deliver a platform that enables users to find and access the most relevant information faster, analyze the academic and broader outcomes of research, and gather insights to inform future strategy. Visit the Dimensions website at https://dimensions.ai and find us on Twitter @DSDimensions.
The Nature Index AI supplement is available here.
About the Nature Index
The Nature Index is a database of author affiliations and institutional relationships. The index tracks contributions to research articles published in 82 high-quality natural science journals, chosen by an independent group of researchers.
The Nature Index provides absolute and fractional counts of article publication at the institutional and national level and, as such, is an indicator of global high-quality research output and collaboration. Data in the Nature Index are updated regularly, with the most recent 12 months made available under a Creative Commons licence at natureindex.com. The database is compiled by Nature Research, part of Springer Nature.
Nature Index metrics
The Nature Index uses Count and Share to track research output. A country/region or an institution is given a Count of 1 for each article that has at least one author from that country/region or institution. This is the case regardless of the number of authors an article has, and it means that the same article can contribute to the Count of multiple countries/regions or institutions.
To glean a country’s, a region’s or an institution’s contribution to an article, and to ensure they are not counted more than once, the Nature Index uses Share, a fractional count that takes into account the share of authorship on each article. The total Share available per article is 1, which is shared among all authors under the assumption that each contributed equally. For instance, an article with 10 authors means that each author receives a Share of 0.1. For authors who are affiliated with more than one institution, the author’s Share is then split equally between each institution. The total Share for an institution is calculated by summing the Share for individual affiliated authors. The process is similar for countries/regions, although complicated by the fact that some institutions have overseas labs that will be counted towards host country/region totals.
About Nature Research
Nature Research is a portfolio of high-quality products and services across the life, physical, chemical and applied sciences – including journals, databases and researcher services – dedicated to serving the scientific community.
Nature (founded in 1869) is the leading, international weekly journal of science. Nature Research also publishes a range of Nature-branded subscription journals, the leading open access multidisciplinary journal Nature Communications, other open access journals including Scientific Reports, and a range of Nature Partner Journals published in partnership with institutions and societies. Together, these journals publish some of the world's most significant scientific discoveries.
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About Springer Nature
For over 175 years Springer Nature has been advancing discovery by providing the best possible service to the whole research community. We help researchers uncover new ideas, make sure all the research we publish is significant, robust and stands up to objective scrutiny, that it reaches all relevant audiences in the best possible format, and can be discovered, accessed, used, re-used and shared. We support librarians and institutions with innovations in technology and data; and provide quality publishing support to societies.
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About Digital Science
Digital Science is a technology company working to make research more efficient. We invest in, nurture and support innovative businesses and technologies that make all parts of the research process more open and effective. Our portfolio includes admired brands including Altmetric, CC Technology, Dimensions, Figshare, Gigantum, ReadCube, Symplectic, IFI Claims, GRID, Overleaf, Ripeta and Writefull. We believe that together, we can help researchers make a difference. Visit www.digital-science.com and follow @digitalsci on Twitter.
Elizabeth Hawkins | Springer Nature | Communications
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