By: Leopoldo de Meis , Maria Scarlet do Carmo and Carla de Meis


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Intense competition among Brazilian scientists for scarce funds may be improving the country's science, but what is the affect on the individual, particularly on new PhDs who need to establish a career?

In this letter to Nature, three researchers from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro report that Brazilian scientists are increasingly evaluated purely on the basis of their publication record — and on the impact factor of the journals that publish their research papers.

Scientists have excessive workloads and are under growing pressure to publish more every year, they say, promoting a "cultural distortion where scientometrics prevails over knowledge".

Link to letter in Nature

Reference: Nature 424, 723 (2003)