13 from S'pore on list of world's top scientific minds

13 from S'pore on list of world's top scientific minds
Prof Lee Jim Yang of NUS (L), who produced around 20 papers last year, was also on the list. Prof Zhang Hua of NTU carried out award-winning research in areas such as the use of nanomaterials.

SINGAPORE - Thirteen professors from Singapore have been named among the world's best and brightest in a new report.

Eight from the National University of Singapore (NUS) and five from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) - specialising in areas including agricultural science and conservation - were named by business information firm Thomson Reuters in its report: The World's Most Influential Scientific Minds: 2014.

It is the largest number of researchers from Singapore to feature on the global list of top scientific researchers which this year featured about 3,200.

It is the third time the New York-based firm has compiled such a list. Only two NUS researchers and one from NTU were named on the first one in 2001.

The study used a new methodology that only considered researchers' latest and most cited papers, instead of all their work over a longer period.

In addition, NTU's Professor Zhang Hua, 43, was one of two from Asia who emerged on a list of 17 "hot" researchers - those who have produced work in the last two years that has been most frequently cited by academics.

Thomson's bibliometric analysis consultant David Pendlebury said there has been a "notable improvement" in the impact of Singaporean research.

"(This) matches all other Thomson Reuters indicators of Singapore's advance in terms of output, world share, citation impact, production of highly cited papers and university rankings," he said. The NUS and NTU were placed second and 11th in Asia respectively in the recent Times Higher Education ranking, he noted.

Data was collected by trawling thousands of journals to count how often papers were cited by other academics between 2002 and 2012.

The top three institutions with the most highly cited researchers were Harvard University, the National Institutes of Health and Stanford University, all in the United States.

Both the NUS and NTU said their inclusions on the list reflects growth in their research activity.

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