Social science research: India
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A comprehensive study of social science research has found that India has mere a 1.6% global share in the 16.6 lakh articles published in reputed journals worldwide in the period between 2009-14. China, on the other hand, had a share of 5% in the same period among the 160 countries which were part of the study .
The study , authored by Sukhdeo Thorat, chairperson of ICSSR, and Samar Verma, of Think Tank Initiative, says that India has only 159 autonomous social science research institutions -“a small number“.The study also found that of the 148 autonomous institutions for which it could get detailed data, 54 are concentrated in Delhi, whereas 15, 13 and 11 are based in Maharashtra, Kerala and West Bengal respectively. The average size of faculty in the 148 autonomous institutions is over seven, which is on the lower side. Of the 148, 29% (43) have less than five faculty members per institute, 19% (29) have less than 10, and 9% (13) have less than 15 members per institute. Only 8% have faculty members numbering 10 and 20, and 9% have more than 20 faculty members.
The highest share of faculty had a background in economics and allied subjects. Related to this, the study says that the major share of research output comes from the discipline of economics, followed by sociology and political science.Others in the descending order of research output include articles and books on educational studies, international studies, social geography , population studies, social history and so on.
Predominance of English is another factor. Only 7% of all social science journals published in the country is in Hindi. Out of the 2,131 journals published between 2000 to 2015, a staggering 1,801 or about 90% were in English while only 7% or 191 journals were in Hindi. There are far fewer journals in other regional languages -34 in Gujarati, 33 in Bengali, and 24 in Marathi.