Dr Mitchell Cappell and Michael Davis from Pennsylvania, USA explored whether the relative American contribution to gastroenterology research, as determined by authorship in journals, decreased from 1980 to 2005.
The team determined country of residence for authors for 8,251 articles, encompassing every gastroenterologic article published in 1980 and 2005.
The team reviewed 9 gastroenterology, and 4 leading medical journals in 8 American and 5 European journals.
|Co-authorship increased in publications from 3% to 14%|
|The American Journal of Gastroenterology|
The team identified country of residence for all editorial board members for the same years in the same journals.
In all 8 analyzed American journals, the relative frequency of non-American authors significantly and sharply increased from 1980 to 2005, and those of American authors correspondingly decreased.
The frequency of non-American authors in the general medical journals, for example the New England Journal of Medicine, rose from 10% in 1980 to 27% in 2005.
The team noted that the frequency of non-American authors in general gastroenterology journals, such as the American Journal of Gastroenterology, rose from 21% in 1980 to 52% in 2005.
The relative frequency of non-American authors in 5 analyzed European journals significantly decreased from 88% in 1980 to 76% in 2005.
Americans authors correspondingly increased in the European journals.
The same trend generally held for the editorial boards of analyzed journals.
The research team noted that the relative frequency of non-American board members significantly increased in 5 American journals, from 4% in 1980 to 31% in 2005, and decreased in all 5 analyzed European journals.
Interstate and transnational collaborations, or co-authorship, increased in publications from 3% in 1980 to 14% in 2005.
Dr Cappell's team concluded, "From 1980 to 2005, American representation in American gastroenterologic journals significantly declined."
"However, American representation in European gastroenterologic journals moderately increased."
"This may be due to increased collaboration and international representation in editorial boards."
"The increasing globalization of information, partly due to computers and the Internet, may be an important etiologic factor."
"This may result in an improving quality of research performed outside America."
"Other potential etiologic factors include improving standard of living outside America and increasing clinical volume of academic gastroenterologists in America."