How will the ratio of China-authored to U.S.-authored highly cited (top 1%) AI papers change over the next three years?
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Context. Citations are a commonly used, though imperfect, measure of a paper's quality. Analyses of U.S. and China publication trends in AI have shown that while there are now more China-authored AI papers than U.S.-authored AI papers, fewer of the China-authored AI papers are highly cited. The gap is closing, however. The above-cited study from the Allen Institute estimates that China will have more top 1% (by citation count) AI papers than the U.S. in 2025. This question is based on different data than the Allen Institute study, but shows similar trends.
Data and resolution details. This question is based on (de-duplicated) publications from Dimensions, Microsoft Academic Graph, and Web of Science. We classified publications as "AI" or not using a predictive model trained on arXiv publication data, where a publication is "AI" if it’s categorized on arXiv under any of artificial intelligence, machine learning, computer vision, computation and language, multi-agent systems, or robotics. To read more about this method, see “Identifying the Development and Application of Artificial Intelligence in Scientific Text.” A paper is a "U.S. paper" if any of its authors is affiliated with a U.S.-based institution. A paper is a "China paper" if any of its authors is affiliated with a China-based institution. "Highly cited" papers are those that are in the top 1% of papers published that year by citation count.
The historical and forecasted values are the number of highly cited China AI papers divided by the number of highly cited U.S. AI papers.
The historical data underlying the graph is here.
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