July 27, 2016

Salk Institute among top 25 North American scientific “stars” in Nature Index

Global, comprehensive index from Nature Publishing Group charts high-performing science centers

Salk News

Salk Institute among top 25 North American scientific “stars” in Nature Index

Global, comprehensive index from Nature Publishing Group charts high-performing science centers

LA JOLLA—Salk Institute ranks as one of the leading scientific “stars” in North America with high-quality output that has grown particularly fast, according to a new report by Nature Research.

The data, publishing July 27 and July 28, 2016 in a report called the Nature Index, use a series of metrics related to papers published in the last few years to evaluate over 8,000 scientific institutions across the globe. The index, designed to be a tool for assessing research performance, charts which countries and institutions are the most efficient at producing high-quality results based on publications in top-tier journals.

Salk Institute is listed among the top 25 institutions in all of North America in the “Regional Stars” section of the index, along with other esteemed centers such as Stanford University, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the California Institute for Biomedical Research. These institutions dramatically increased their contribution to a selection of top natural science journals from 2012-2015.

Nature Index – Top 25 Institutions in North America

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Credit: Nature Research

“While the Salk Institute has always been a top-ranking research organization, the last few years have seen incredible growth in our number of scientific discoveries thanks to our phenomenal faculty, scientists and staff, and advances in technology and fundraising support,” says Elizabeth Blackburn, president of the Salk Institute.

First launched in November 2014, the Nature Index database tracks the author affiliations of research articles published in a group of 68 high-quality natural science journals, which have been selected by independent panels of active scientists. Responses from over 2,800 individuals to a large-scale survey were used to validate the selections.

The Nature Index uses three counts of article output: article count (AC), which assigns a rank of one for each article that has at least one author from that institute; fractional count (FC), which takes into account the relative contribution of each author to an article; and weighted fractional count (WFC), which applies a weighting to fractional count to adjust for the overrepresentation of papers from astronomy and astrophysics.

David Swinbanks, founder of the Nature Index, said: “With four years of data already behind it, the Nature Index is an increasingly powerful tool to assess research performance. By identifying these rising stars, we’re given an insight into which new emerging institutions are likely to play a role in addressing some of the globe’s most pressing challenges. Providing researchers and institutions with this data, through the index’s freely accessible website, is another example of how Nature Research is working to meet the scientific community’s needs.”

More information about the Nature Index is available at natureindex.com.

About the Salk Institute:
The Salk Institute for Biological Studies is one of the world’s preeminent basic research institutions, where internationally renowned faculty probes fundamental life science questions in a unique, collaborative, and creative environment. Focused both on discovery and on mentoring future generations of researchers, Salk scientists make groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of cancer, aging, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and infectious diseases by studying neuroscience, genetics, cell and plant biology, and related disciplines.

About Nature Research:
Nature Research is a portfolio of high quality products and services across the life, physical, chemical and applied sciences, including journals, online databases and researcher services, which are dedicated to serving the scientific community. Nature (founded in 1869) is the leading weekly, international scientific journal and sits at the heart of the brand. Nature Research also publishes a range of Nature-branded research and reviews subscription journals, alongside leading open access multidisciplinary journal Nature Communications and other open access journals, including mega journal Scientific Reports and a range of partner journals known collectively as the Nature Partner Journals. Online, nature.com provides over 8 million visitors per month with access to Nature Research publications and services, including news and comment from Nature, and the leading scientific jobs board Naturejobs. Nature Research also offers a range of researcher services, including online and in-person training and expert language and editing services.

Nature Research is part of Springer Nature, a leading global research, educational and professional publisher. Springer Nature is the world’s largest academic book publisher, publisher of the world’s most influential journals and a pioneer in the field of open research. The company numbers almost 13,000 staff in over 50 countries. Springer Nature was formed in 2015 through the merger of Nature Publishing Group, Palgrave Macmillan, Macmillan Education and Springer Science+Business Media. For more information, please visit nature.com and springernature.com and follow @nresearchnews and @SpringerNature.

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